Editors' pick

Wine Happy Hour at Northside Social

Happy hour

Editorial Review

Friday, February 8, 2013

If you’re looking for an original first-date option in Clarendon, the happy hour at Northside Social has arrived just in time for Valentine’s Day.

On Monday through Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m., the cozy upstairs wine bar offers select $5 vinos by the glass: You can choose from two red selections, two white selections and one sparkling wine. To encourage regular visits, the happy hour wines will change every two weeks or so and won’t come from the typical by-the-glass list, says wine bar manager Charlotte Devilliers.

“I didn’t want to have a pinot grigio and a chardonnay,” she explains. “The idea is to get people to drink outside their comfort zone.”

In the happy hour’s first week, for example, the bubbly came from Spain and the top white was an easy-to-sip, flavorful cortese from Italy. The pair of reds featured a rustic, old-school tempranillo and a rich, fruity barbera.

“I was nervous people would only want to drink things they had heard of,” Devilliers says, “but people really seem to enjoy trying new wines.”

The decor is modern with light colors and glossy wood, and a combination of chandeliers and a wax-covered candelabra make the space coffee-shop bright. The calm atmosphere is equally welcoming for date night or for a group of friends catching up over a few glasses and a plate of artisan cheeses (3 for $11). Just bring an open mind.

Monday-Saturday, 5 to 7 p.m. 3211 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. 703-465-0145. www.northsidesocialarlington.com.