Cantine Isola

The Cantine Isola (cantine means “cellars”) has been open for over a century, while the area around it has changed from bourgeois neighborhood to chaotic ethnic district to its latest incarnation: 50 percent trendy Chinatown, 50 percent Yuccie mecca. Throughout these tidal changes, the Sarais family has continued serving an outstanding selection of artisanal wines with a focus on Italy and France to a clientele of discerning patrons in an unpretentious setting packed floor to ceiling with bottles. The place is always busy, which is part of its charm.

Known For
  • good wine
  • day drinking
  • outdoors / patio
  • historic
What to drink
Every single bottle of wine, including older vintages and rare wines, is also sold by the glass. Just ask.
Every Thursday night, patron Luca Sarais climbs on a stool and proceeds to read a poem to the gathered clients, who observe a solemn silence. If you guess the poet, you get a glass of wine on the house. No cheating!