Hotel Biron- Wine Bar & Art Gallery

What a great local find! This "hotel" is not actually a hotel at all; its an underground, back alley, dimly lit hole in the wall wine bar, and one of the best wine bars I've experienced in the city thus far! A good friend and SF native guided me to this sheek sounding little place, and I was surprised to find the atmosphere to be dark, comfortable, and surprisingly welcoming! Unlike many trendy, urban wine bars, this place had a warmth to it that invited you right in. The tables and chairs were a mishmash of different heights and styles, and to be served you had to order at the small, unassuming bar hidden in the corner. The art changes monthly, allowing the bar to evolve with whichever artists are being represented at the time. During my visit, the walls were covered with some of the most different art I had ever seen (video images of what appeared to be human blood cells and other anatomy magnified to enhance details and shapes). It was unique and memorizing, and left me excited for upcoming artists in the future. (New artists featured the 1st Thursday of every month)
The most impressive feature of this bar, however, was the wine list! Not often is this the case I feel, being that some wine bars try to hide their shortcomings with fancy furniture and "low prices". Hotel Biron on the other hand had a diverse selection of wines from all around the world, and showed no bias toward one region or style over another. They seemed to embrace the foreign styles as well as local favorites, without overcrowding the list with overpriced Napa options. They also offered a great selection of beers and cheeses to complement the wines, which in my opinion is a must!
My selection for the evening consisted of the Serra de Estrella cheese, a Portugese washed rind sheep’s milk, raw walnuts, and a glass of Taltarni Brut Rosé "Tache". The ripeness of the cheese paired perfectly with the dry, crisp flavors of the sparkling wine. This is most definitely going to become a frequented, favorite spot, but hopefully it stays fairly undiscovered and underground, since that attributed to most of its charm! Its a good thing the entrance is hidden in a dark alley behind the neighboring late night, trendy, hot spot wine bar...

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