Local wine bars offer many wines by the glass or deep wine lists.
Grab a table on the front patio in good weather and watch the streetcars and characters on St. Charles Avenue while sipping from a well-curated selection of almost two dozen wines by the glass. Inside the train-style building, it's casually elegant yet comfortable, drawing 20-somethings and young professionals to dine on french fries, cheese plates and more. 3442 St. Charles Ave., (504) 895-0858; www.thedelachaise. com
The global wine selection is freshened up often and always plentiful (it's grouped by palate: flirting with oak, stones and acid, herbs and smoke, etc.). The interior is bright and comfortable, offering sofas, chairs and seating at the bar. The small plates menu ranges from fried Brussels sprouts to grilled eggplant bruschetta, and there's a selection of signature cocktails. Live music is scheduled Wednesday through Saturday. 8118 Oak St., (504) 302-1485; www.oaknola.com, @oaknola
Pearl Wine Co.
This cozy, casual bar adjoins Pearl Wine Co., which sells small-production wine, beer and liquor. There are frequent free wine tastings and live jazz Friday and Saturday nights. The cocktails menu features classics including Pimm's Cup, Sazerac and French 75 as well as craft cocktails, and tasting plates featuring cheese and charcuterie, Greek snacks, bruschetta, soup or salad are available. 3700 Orleans Ave., (504) 483-6314; www.pearlwineco.com, @pearlwineco
The Tasting Room
The Tasting Room opened in February and specializes in small vineyards and wine producers from around the world. The interior is elegant with some quirky touches, like a chandelier, overstuffed couch, carved wood bar and wine cellar decor. 1906 Magazine St., (504) 581-3880; www.facebook.com/thetastingroomneworleans
Tommy's Wine Bar
This upscale hangout offers seating at the well-stocked bar or in easy chairs scattered around the room, which is elegantly appointed with rich wood and exposed brick walls. Wine choices are extensive (150 bottles or 20 by the glass), but there also is a long list of bourbon, cognac and Scotch. Cheeses and pates are available at the bar, or order from the full menu at Tommy's Cuisine next door. 752 Tchoupitoulas St., (504) 581-7490; www.tommysneworleans.com
Wine Institute of New Orleans (W.I.N.O.)
It's a great place to explore wines without investing in bottles with which your're unfamiliar. The bar sells 120 wines by the ounce, half glass and full glass and has added a variety of premium beers and hard ciders to its drinks menu. W.I.N.O. also offers classes about wine. 610 Tchoupitoulas St., (504) 324-8000; www.winoschool.com