Local Gem: A Wine Bar with a List from All Over the World

Ardesia Wine Bar

Ardesia, pre-COVID (Photo credit: Joshua Bright)

Our new series highlights a beloved local business that contributes to the character and vibrancy of the neighborhoods where our buildings are located.

This week, we feature Ardesia Wine Bar in New York City, a few blocks from The Westport at 510 West 52nd Street. In keeping with city guidelines, Ardesia’s patio is now open for walk-ins, and you can also pick up takeout salads, sandwiches, wine, beer and frosé all day. They are also offering select delivery service for those in the area; check out their website for more details.  

While Coronavirus shutdowns may have upended how local businesses operate, many owners have started discovering new methods for reaching customers. For the first time, antique stores are selling their wares through Instagram, while Michelin-star restaurants are packing up foods to go.

Mandy Oser, ardesia wine bar

Mandy Oser (credit: Melanie Dunea)

In the case of Mandy Oser, owner of Ardesia Wine Bar in Hell’s Kitchen, the temporary changes in the New York State liquor laws in March allowed her to venture into a totally new area – selling wines to go.

Since the shutdown began, Ardesia has done everything from hand-deliver wine bottles to neighboring buildings, to offering virtual wine tastings, to putting together curated wine packages complete with tasting notes and quizzes.

“You can get a bottle of wine anywhere, we wanted to give people a reason to buy from us,” Oser says.

Ardesia even started a mini “to-go” stand outside of the restaurant called “The Outpost” where they are selling light food dishes as well as beer, wine and frosé.

“It's really not the same as what we used to do, but we all have to adapt,” she says, “I think that's been our key, just pivoting every time we need to pivot and being adaptable and being a little bit scrappy too because nothing is guaranteed right now.”

Oser opened Ardesia about eleven years ago after a nearly decades-long career working on the business side of Le Bernadin. She developed a passion for wine, eventually earning her certificate as a sommelier.

At Ardesia, she’s taken a liberal approach to the wine list, curating a mixture of familiar styles, as well as their newer, more unexpected counterparts. On the menu, you can find classic French and Italian wines, popular natural wines, wines from exotic locales like Lebanon and Morocco and the occasional local wine from Long Island or the Finger Lake region.

“You know I've never closed a door. There's just so much to discover in the world and so we’ve never kind of limited ourselves to one region or one spot or one style.”

With the start of Phase Two of New York City’s reopening plan, Ardesia is once again able to serve food and wine on its outdoor patio, and Oser is excited to return to a slightly more normal way of operating.

“The delivery is great, but we were still quite disconnected from people. We're a hospitality business and it felt strange to not get to provide that directly,” she said, “Now it’s better but still interesting. I have friends of mine coming up to me in sunglasses, baseball hat and a mask, and I don’t recognize them.”

Ardesia Wine Bar
510 West 52nd Street, New York, NY 10019

The Related Life is written and produced by the Related Life Editorial Team. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest events, news and announcements in your area, and tag us for a chance to be featured @therelatedlife and #therelatedlife.