THE BLOG
04/06/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Who Wants Wine?

Great Deals Abound at Chicago's Restaurants

How many times have you gone out to dinner, looked at the wine list and scoffed at the price of some of the bottles? Deep down you knew you wanted to try one but just couldn't bring yourself to shell out the money.

A number of restaurants around town have started offering many or most of the wines on their lists for major discounts -- but on select nights.

2009-03-04-vivoenoteca.jpgEvery Sunday and Monday Vivo hosts Vivo Enoteca. The restaurant offers select bottles at really reduced prices. For example, grab a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label for just $67 (normally this goes for $100). If you like Chardonnay, branch out and try the 2006 Donnafugatta Chiaranda and save $25 off the normal $75 price tag. It's a delicious, robust wine that goes well with salmon, pasta or chicken. And if you want a real treat, pick out the 2001 Masi 'Vaio' Amarone for $97 (regularly $145). Amarone is one of my favorite wines -- it's big, lush, jammy and generally a wonderful drinking wine. If you can't make it out Sunday or Monday, head in Tuesday or Wednesday when a bottle purchase of $75 or more lets you get a second bottle of equal or lesser value for half price.

2009-03-04-customhouse.jpgWhat's better than a big red with a fat steak? Not much. That's why on Sundays Custom House now offers 50 percent off every bottle on their list -- and you get to eat Shawn McClain's incredible dishes. It's not just reds, but whites and sparklings as well. Right -- 1997 Laurent Perrier Brut for $62.50. A great New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc for just $21 (that'd be the Saint Clair Vicar's Choice). And then there's the big, bad reds. You can get Walter Hansel 2006 North Slope Pinot Noir for $42.50; Tensly 2006 Colson Canyon Syrah for $37.50; 2009-03-04-hautbrion.jpgSusan Balbo 2007 Malbec for $31; even 1995 Graves Chateau la Mission Haut Brion for $325. Hey -- it's a Bordeaux for half off -- can you really complain?

If you're just in the mood for a really delicious glass of reserve red, head to Nacional 27 on Mondays where sommelier Adam Seger hand selects a glass for just $5. And if you decide you want a bottle -- and then really love it -- you can purchase a full, unopened bottle at 30 percent off. Every night. It's a great new promotion -- 30 percent wines to go. Not bad.