Wine bottles, wine glass, and the Space Needle

Best Wine Bars in Seattle: A Guide for Wine Enthusiasts

Sustainable, funky, charming, chic, and a little bit hipster. Seattle offers a bit of everything in its ever-evolving wine scene. The Emerald City is no stranger to wine, as it is located in the second-largest wine-producing state in the United States with over 1,000 vineyards. While a trip east across the mountains to some of Washington’s vineyards is certainly worth the trek, wine lovers need not leave Seattle to quench their thirst.

As a Seattle native and a long-time lover of wine, I am continuously exploring and partaking in the many dimensions of Seattle’s wine scene. For those wanting to stay local, some of Seattle’s wine bars are dedicated to Washington vineyards. Many also feature regional wines from the state’s southerly neighbors in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. If you’re a natural wine fanatic like myself, Seattle has you covered with plenty of pocket-sized wine bars dedicated to the growing popularity of minimal intervention wine. Or, if you prefer to stick to the tradition of Old World wines, step into dimly lit French-inspired wine bars that have popped up across the city. One thing is certain: wine lovers won’t go thirsty in Seattle.

Left Bank

Wine shelves and bar


A neighborhood staple in South Seattle’s South Park, Left Bank sits at the heart of the city’s natural wine movement. This hole-in-the-wall spot is one of my favorite bars in the city to have a quiet hideaway while learning about new and intriguing wines. Left Bank focuses on what it does best: serving up fun glasses of small-batch, minimal-intervention wine from a rotating menu. Whether you’re a seasoned natural wine consumer or just learning why you should drink natural wine, Left Bank is the spot. 

This neighborhood staple prides itself on being the oldest, smallest natural wine shop and bar in South Park. The establishment is quirky, welcoming, and unpretentious — and is an ardent supporter of local community initiatives such as the Seattle Coalition on Homelessness and Black Lives Matter Seattle. While Left Bank doesn’t have a food menu, feel free to bring your own food to enjoy along with your wine.

(206) 257-5052

8526 14th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98108

Light Sleeper

Wine bottles outside patio


Head to Capitol Hill’s coveted Chophouse Row for a glass or two of natty wine at Light Sleeper. Capitol Hill is a dining and nightlife destination in Seattle and Chophouse Row is home to some of the neighborhood’s top culinary experiences. Natural wine fanatics should stop by Light Sleeper’s terroir bar, a cool establishment that echoes the hipster sentiment of the Hill, to sample some of the neighborhood’s best wines. When coming solo, I enjoy ordering a flight to sample my way through the rotating menu of wines.

When I come with friends, I prefer to grab a table to settle in for the evening while sipping my way through the funky wine list and filling up on seasonal small plates. Light Sleeper regularly hosts pop-up chefs for collaborative evening events. The inside bar is expertly furnished and plant-filled but once the sun comes out for the season, take a seat outside, sit back, and watch the eclectic life of Capitol Hill mill by as you sip your wine. Stop by neighboring Wide Eyed Wines for take-home bottle selections.

(206) 333-0466

1424 11th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

Le Caviste

Close-up of French wine bottles


Lovers of French wine should head straight to Le Caviste. This Belltown wine bar and bistro is a warm and inviting refuge for chilly Seattle days — and has received much attention over the years. From Beaujolais to Burgundy, Vouvray to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Le Caviste pours a phenomenal range of French vin and is the go-to spot in town to explore the wine regions of France. The rotating menu of wines by the glass is focused and ever-changing yet has options aplenty for every palate, which are advertised by hand on a blackboard.

As you savor the terroir of France’s vineyards, choose from a selection of charcuterie plates, fromage, salads, and plats du jour that pair effortlessly with the wine. The space is cozy with a handful of petite tables to tuck away in. Visiting solo, I grabbed a seat at the small bar and sipped some Beaujolais while reading a book and chatting with other bargoers. Le Caviste also has a bottle shop for your takeaway needs.

(206) 728-2657

1919 7th Ave, Seattle, WA 98101

Footprint Wine Tap

Taps and wine glasses


The perfect spot for innovative, earth-loving winos, Footprint Wine Tap elevates the sustainable wine game — and might just make you stop and think about what sustainable means when it comes to wine. This Capitol Hill wine bar is dedicated to reducing its carbon footprint wherever possible.

The main focal point in waste reduction is wine packaging. The solution: eliminate bottles, which produce extraordinary waste every year. Over 2.5 billion wine bottles end up in landfills annually. Footprint pours its wines from keg taps instead of bottles and is the only spot in the city to do so. The innovative business also offers a fill-up growler program.

When it comes to the wine itself, Footprint keeps it local, featuring a couple dozen Washington and Oregon wineries that regularly rotate. Should you work up an appetite, Footprint serves flatbreads, boards, and dips.

(206) 485-7175

1222 E Madison St Ste C, Seattle, WA 98122

La Dive

Natural wine bottles


Another Capitol Hill establishment makes an appearance on the list. The neighborhood truly knows how to deliver when it comes to food and wine. La Dive is a fun spot filled with bold artwork and glittery swivel seats that became so popular a second location recently opened in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood. The wine list features primarily minimal intervention wines with some more accessible pours for those just starting to dip their toes into the world of natural wine. Expect favorites including a rotating pet nat, cava, Vinho Verde, and chilled red on the list.

La Dive is the perfect spot for happy hour, a mid-afternoon wine, or a late-night glass, as wine is poured until 2 am on the weekends. If you’re extra thirsty, go for La Dive’s long pour of a house wine filled to the brim. Beer, cocktails, and NA options are also available. This funky establishment mixes up an array of foods; snack your way through the likes of cheese boards, deviled eggs, gourmet sandwiches, lavash quesadillas, and tinned fish.

721 E Pike St, Seattle, WA 98122


Wine bottles on shelf


Situated in Seattle’s leafy Madrona neighborhood, my preferred way to enjoy Bottlehouse is to unwind with wine in its lush garden. If it’s not the weather for outdoor wining and dining, grab a seat in the early 20th-century craftsman house that is just as charming. Bottlehouse boasts a rich wine menu featuring a unique variety of wines from small, boutique wineries and natural or minimal intervention winemakers. 

The rotating list balances regional vintages and wines from around the world. If you’re curious to try several wines, Bottlehouse serves half and quarter glasses of wine in addition to full glasses, making it the perfect spot to sip your way through its wine selection.

This Magnolia neighborhood favorite will also keep you satiated with plenty of nibbles alongside your wine. Baguette and honey-infused butter is the perfect light snack. If you have a bigger appetite, go crazy and sample plates like heirloom tomato and burrata, shaved asparagus salad, tuna crudo, and various sandwiches. Non-wine drinkers can quench their thirst with local craft beers, cider, and house-made sodas.

(206) 708-7164

1416 34th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

Parlour Wines

Wine bottles on bar

Parlour Wines-Madison Park/Facebook

Tucked into the Madison Park neighborhood just a stone’s throw away from Lake Washington, Parlour Wines is headed up by a husband-wife duo who formerly ran a wine shop in Brooklyn. The story is simple: they are passionate about connecting quality wine with a story to consumers. The space doubles as a bottle shop and wine bar and packs a bunch of quality wines into a small area. 

The brick building is home to wines predominately made from estate and organic fruits, ensuring that the farming and the fermentation are both being undertaken by the same people. High-quality, small-scale wines that are as delicious as they are interesting will keep you returning for more. On a sunny day, bring your glass onto the patio and watch the colorful life of Madison Park pass by. Parlour Wines doesn’t serve food but welcomes outside food to be brought in.

(206) 710-4632

1803 42nd Ave E, Ground Fl, Seattle, WA 98112


French wine bottles outdoor bar


Translating to “sea urchin” in French, L’Oursin is a chic hideaway in Seattle’s energetic Capitol Hill neighborhood. Doubling as a wine bar and a restaurant that specializes in cuisine from northwestern France, L’Oursin is a fun spot for an evening date or catch-up, and one of my favorites in the neighborhood.

The wine list consists predominantly of natural wines from France, with each wine marked on the menu as traditional or adventurous to help guide your selection. From pet nat to gamay, chenin blanc to cabernet franc, L’Oursin’s wine list is intriguing, polished, and representative of some of France’s smaller wine regions. After you’ve sampled your way through the wine list, dig into the selection of seafood-centric small plates. Alaskan scallops and raw albacore tuna are among the selections from the sea.

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(206) 485-7173

1315 E Jefferson St, Seattle, WA 98122

Itto’s Vino

Wine bottles and succulent


A brand-new contender on the block, Itto’s Vino brings the spirit of the Mediterranean to West Seattle. Each week, Itto’s offers a new selection of pours by the glass, focusing on smaller wine regions and funky minimal intervention wines from the Iberian Peninsula. Taste vintages from the Basque Country, Morocco, Georgia, and Portugal in this inviting neighborhood spot. If you can’t make up your mind, go for a wine flight. Simply choose your country of origin or preferred style of wine and the bartenders will curate you a flight of three pours. Itto’s also offers a range of expertly crafted cocktails and a number of non-alcoholic wines.

Beyond wine, Itto’s Vino also has crafted a dynamic menu reflecting the flavors of the Mediterranean. Make sure to come hungry so you can dig sample the Spanish-inspired tapas menu. Basque cheeses, cured meats, sardines, spicy mackerel, and stuffed piquillo peppers are among the small plates you can look forward to filling up on.

4158 California Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98116

Flight Wine + Chocolate

Wine bottles against red wall


Few things are more stereotypically Seattle than an airport-themed bar. Flight Wine and Chocolate is an innovative nod to Seattle’s aviation history as the original home to Boeing and near where much of the company’s manufacturing still occurs. In this Capitol Hill airplane-themed wine bar, the focus lies primarily in showcasing the best of Washington wines via, you guessed it, flights. 

Although you can stop by for a glass, the main feature is a wine-tasting experience. Bookings are recommended or you can take your chance with walk-ins. Flight Wine and Chocolate’s focus is on providing tasting flights to highlight the splendor of Washington wine country from one spot in Seattle. Choose between a few flight options. First Class and Business Class feature Washington and Oregon wines, while the International Flight features wines from afar, primarily focusing on French vintages. 

Of course, pair your chosen flight with chocolate, experiencing how perfectly the two complement one another. Chocolate flavors regularly rotate, with past offerings including raspberry lemongrass, hibiscus pink peppercorn, chocolate cream, and lavender. Sweet tooths can enjoy the chocolate with Flight’s dessert wine flight.

(206) 712-6919

1300 E Pike St, Ste 103, Seattle, WA 98112

Princess and Bear

Glasses of orange wine and cheese


Another South Park staple, Princess and Bear takes a very niche and inspired perspective. Even focusing on French vintages would be too broad for this wine bar. Owners, Carol Bailey and Steve Medwell, fell in love with the wild terrain and old vine artisanal wines of the Languedoc Roussillon region. As the American taste for wine evolved, they saw an opportunity to provide a more nuanced experience. Stretching from Provence to the Pyrenees and the border of Spain in southern France, the Languedoc is filled with unspoiled vineyards and small-batch winemakers. As so many grape varietals thrive in the region, many winemakers produce blends as opposed to single-varietal wines. 

Princess and Bear almost transports you straight to the rolling hills of the Languedoc. While the bar may not be set against the snowy peaks of the Pyrenees, it offers an impressive selection of small-batch, artisanal wines reflecting old-world tradition, innovation, and unique terroir from one of France’s most underrated wine regions — and is the perfect guide to Languedoc wines. Princess and Bear also hosts monthly events, including French Conversation evenings, Paint and Sip, and a winemaker series.

(206) 323-4757

309 S Cloverdale St, Suite A1, Seattle WA 98108

Fable All Day

Wine and water bottle against wooden wall

When one stand-out wine bar in the neighborhood bids farewell, the best-case scenario is when another fantastic wine bar takes its place. I was thrilled when Fable All Day opened in the summer of 2023, moving into the old house which was formerly the Petite Soif wine bar. This Beacon Hill spot in south Seattle has stayed on the same wavelength as its predecessor, focusing on natural and minimal intervention pours in a light-filled, carefully designed space.

Beyond its fun range of wines, Fable All Day also doubles as an all-day café and is a fantastic spot for remote workers, and is among my favorite writing spots in the city. Pull up a chair, open up your laptop, and order a glass of wine to help get your creative juices flowing. 

Non-wine lovers can choose from local beers, coffee, and other NA beverages. Don’t forget to check out Fable’s daily selection of freshly baked pastries and treats or indulge in its full brunch and dinner menu served throughout the week. About once a month, Fable also hosts winemakers evenings, inviting guests to tap into the behind-the-scenes of their favorite wines.

3309A Beacon Ave S, Seattle, WA 98144

Esters Enoteca

Turquoise and purple Esters Enoteca


Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood is another hot spot on the Emerald City’s food and wine tour. While Fremont is home to several solid wine bars, Esters Enoteca hits a bit differently than the rest. I was immediately taken by the black and white tiled floors and eclectic artwork on the walls, which are reminiscent of a different time and place.

Although not a wine bar exclusively, Esters offers daily pours of red, white, and rose at some of the best prices in town. The wines are fun and surprising — and a perfect pairing to the mouthwatering food menu. Choose from tapas, paninis, and pasta for lunch. Esters also specializes in sangria and vermouth spritz, alongside other cocktails, in addition to a tasty selection of NA drinks. Swing by for evening happy hour or come in on a Thursday, when a glass of wine (or another drink of choice) comes with a free scoop of paella.

(206) 295-1903

3416 Fremont Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103

Halfseas Wine and Bottle Shop

Wine bottles on shelf


Ballard in northwestern Seattle feels a world away from the rest of the city. Located along the Ballard Locks with easy access to the Puget Sound, Ballard has a distinct maritime feel to it, which trickles down into many of its establishments. The newly opened Halfseas Wine and Bottle Shop embodies that maritime feel. After all, Halfseas was inspired by the eternal connection between wine and the ocean and is a celebration of community, delight, and everything that wine brings with it.

What started out as a monthly wine club during the pandemic, grew into a pop-up shop, and eventually into a neighborhood brick-and-mortar wine bar and shop. Stop by this cozy spot for a glass — and perhaps even a chat — as you experience wines that wouldn’t be on the shelves of your typical grocery store. There are monthly tastings and a patio made for warm-weather wine drinking.

5413 6th AVE NW, Seattle, WA 98107

Chez Phinney

Wine glasses with rose wine


An inviting and off-beat spot in Seattle’s Phinney Ridge neighborhood, Chez Phinney is inspired by owners Julie and Andrew Goldstein’s time exploring European wine bars. This self-serve establishment on colorful Greenwood Ave offers 24 wines on pour by the ounce. Sample a few wines by serving yourself a one-ounce pour before landing on your favorite for a half or a full glass.

The wines on offer rotate regularly, mixing local Pacific Northwest wines and Old World wine regions. If you’re in the mood for some fizz, Chez Phinney has a hearty representation of the world of bubbles, pouring glasses of Prosecco, cava, crémant, and pet nat. For those who are alcohol-free, mocktails, non-alcoholic wines, spritzes, and sparkling waters are on offer. Chez Phinney also serves classic wine bar snacks including cheese, dips, olives, bruschetta, and tapenade to keep you full as you sample your way through the wine rotation.

(206) 656-7400

7400 Greenwood Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103


Wine tasting on barrel


As a Seattle native, wine enthusiast, and food, travel, and drinks writer from the region, I have tasted my way through Seattle’s wine scene many times over. I enjoy exploring neighborhood bars that support small vineyards and winemakers and offer wine that can’t be found on the average restaurant menu or grocery store shelf. Seattle has more wine phenomenal wine bars than are able to fit into one story, but this list represents the most memorable wine bars I have visited and that I keep returning to. 

Personally, I have visited Left Bank, Fable, L’Oursin, Le Caviste, La Dive, Esters Enoteca, Light Sleeper, Princess and Bear, Bottlehouse, and Footprint Wine. I’ve added a few new contenders on the block, which I come across through research, local networks, and online reviews. Each of these spots has received top ratings and echoes the same sentiment as the others on the list: a dedication to serving stand-out, fun wines with a story. 

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