Best of Boston

BEST Wine Shop

2013 BEST Wine Shop

Ball Square Fine Wines

Somerville

Few wine shops are as easy (or as fun) to explore as Ball Square. There are the weekly Friday-night tastings, the nearby cheese counter for perfect fromage pairings, and the organized shelves, which are filled with everything from solid $8… read more»

2013 BEST Wine Shop, South

Esprit du Vin

Milton

The owners here specialize in wines produced in small quantities (fewer than 10 cases). Bottles from all over the world line the shelves, designed to appeal to every budget and palate. Not only that, a quarter of the stock changes… read more»

2013 BEST Wine Shop, North

Wine Sense

Andover

Wine Sense is small, but that’s a good thing, because you can feel confident that owner Samanta Ettore has vetted every single bottle on display. Don’t want any part in the picking? Grab one of the tailored-to-the-season wine six-packs she… read more»

2013 BEST Wine Shop, West
Photo by Jesse Burke

The Urban Grape

Chestnut Hill

You can try on clothes before you buy—so why not taste bottles of wine beforehand, too? At the Urban Grape, an Enomatic tasting machine dispenses samples of 16 wines on demand. And because the many wines on offer here are… read more»

2012 BEST Wine Shop, North

The Vineyard

North Andover

You’ll find hundreds of reds and whites at this small shop on Route 114, not to mention a great selection of rosé and dessert wines, all at a variety of price points. Then there are the seasonal grand tasting events,… read more»

2012 BEST Wine Shop, South

Bin Ends

Braintree

This emporium’s selection depends solely on the weekly deals they score from their suppliers, so buy what you love now, because it may soon be gone forever. And attention bargain hunters: Bin Ends’ “six-pack’ special (buy six bottles and get… read more»

2012 BEST Wine Shop, West

The Urban Grape

Chestnut Hill

If only wine bottles could talk. Instead, most languish on store shelves across the city, relying only on crumpled winemaker-written blurbs and outdated Robert Parker ratings to convey their quality and nuances. The lucky ones, however, end up at the… read more»

2012 BEST Wine Shop

Central Bottle and Provisions

Cambridge

We’ve had it with snotty wine sellers. You know what? Sometimes all we want is an oaky California chardonnay. Instead of judging our palates or wallets, the folks at Central Bottle approach our preferences and budget like a fun riddle…. read more»

2011 BEST Wine Shop, West
Photograph by Jessica Scranton

The Urban Grape

Chestnut Hill

We’re done wandering around wine shops, waiting patiently for a clerk to comb his mental archives for something we’ll enjoy. Urban Grape sells wine the way we like to buy it: grouped by body and intensity—not by region, grape, or… read more»

2010 BEST Wine Shop
2010-wineshop1

Central Bottle and Provisions

Cambridge

We like to think we know wine. But like 99 percent of the population, we really just like to drink it. Thank heaven for Liz Vilardi, the nose-in-the-know at sparkling new shop Central Bottle. While her knowledge of wine is… read more»