Drink Cheap! St. Louis Wine List Bargains Revealed #1

Gut Check canvasses local wine bars and restaurants, looking to suss out dining-out wine bargains.

Today we have a quartet of offerings that'll keep your glass full for a lot less -- provided you visit on the right day of the week.

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Monday takes us to Cyrano's (603 East Lockwood Avenue, Webster Groves; 314-953-3232), where by-the-glass selections and whole bottles are 50 percent off on the first day of the week. With about ten by-the-glass options apiece in red and white, plus four sparklers, there are lots of choices from which to pick.

Prices on the list are on the fair side to begin with (about twice retail). So the discount drops them to what you'd pay at a wine shop. As spring rolls in, we suggest having 'em pull the cork on Martin Codax's pretty Albariño ($14 on Monday) or Loimer's Austrian riesling ($16) and look for a seat on the patio.

On Tuesday, the fine Italian cuisine at Mangia Italiano (3145 South Grand Boulevard; 314-664-8585), now under the steady hand of chef David Timney, can be accompanied by bottles from the wine list at half price. The emphasis is on Italy, natch, but there is a well-thought-out, compact selection from around the world, offered at very reasonable prices. Translation: On Tuesday you can drink some nice bottles for less than what you'd pay at a wine store.

Some good places to start:

Iname's 2008 Soave ($15 on Tuesday), Felsina's 2007 Berardenga Chianti ($15) and Paitin's 2006 Nebbiolo d'Alba Ca Veja ($22.50). Mangia's now smoke-free, so you can enjoy your wine without a side of Camel.

Wednesday is "Flight Night" at Robust (227 West Lockwood Avenue, Webster Groves; 314-963-0033) which means 15 percent off the price of all wine flights. It's no coincidence that we featured some of these selections in "Friday Night Flights" last week; Robust is a place that really takes wine flights seriously. They put together interesting, high-quality wines that are fun to drink and teach you something along the way. They're good value at their regular prices; knocking 15 percent off is icing on the cake.

Finally, on Thursday you can get your fresh, local and sustainable needs met at Local Harvest Cafe (3137 Morganford Road; 314-772-8815), and pay half price for bottles of wine to wash it all down. The selection encompasses about ten bottles each of red and white, with an emphasis on organic and sustainable producers from around the world. The most expensive bottle on the regular list is priced at $29, so you're guaranteed not to put your budget in jeopardy.

Know of any other bargains? Drop a comment below, and we'll add them to the next edition!


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