Call the ayi because its time to have a night on out the town with your honey.
Place and Vibe
BottlesXO has done themselves right by opening up their bar XO in the middle of the former French Concession. It may not be your typical romantic date night setting, but its retro chic decor is perfect for that chill date night after a long week, when all you can think about is a glass of wine and a grownup conversation.
The French windows open up this quaint space onto the street, allowing diners to sit both inside and out, while the neon lighting and an upbeat soundtrack keep you in a good mood all night long.
The Food and Wine
The venue may be small, but their wine selection packs the punch. Every bottle in their app can be found in XO – which, we’ll admit, is quite a variety. Glasses range from RMB25-125, while full bottles are RMB165-595.
Being more red wine enthusiasts, we loved the Guado Al Melo (RMB290) – a Cabernet and Merlot blend from Tuscany. It is a smooth, full-bodied wine that takes on the characteristics of Bordeaux wines. We paired this organic wine with their stuccato di manzo (RMB68), a delicious steak topped with cheese and arugula.
Another favorite red was the Terra Mazzei (RMB260), a delicious blend of four different grapes from Italy that’s complex and very tasty. Its color is translucent for a red wine, and it pairs well with spicy foods. Try it with their pizza of the day and ask the chef to for some extra chilies or chili oil to top it off.
If you are keen for a sweet white wine, try the Chartron La Fleur (RMB210), a Sauvignon Blanc from France. Its luscious aroma draws you in for the fruity taste to follow. Enjoy this with the assorted cold cuts and cheese platter (RMB98) that is topped with hazelnuts and cranberries, bringing out its fruitiness.
While many wine bars concentrate more on the wine and treat their food options as an afterthought, XO puts in effort to balance both. The food menu is still quite small, but the quality is high and there’s just enough variety to accommodate the wine options. The knowledgeable staff is also happy to recommend food pairings to your wine.
Date Night Approved?
With a bar atmosphere and high-top tables, this place certainly suits the adults and not the kids. Great for a relaxed night out with a glass of wine and a light dinner, go with your significant other or even another couple (we wouldn’t recommend a big group because of the small space). It’s great for a quality bottle of wine that won’t break the bank, and it’s perfect for every night of the week.
Price: RMB150-400 per person (depending on wine selection)
Who’s going: Couples and small groups
Good for: Light dinner and wine
See listing for XO Wine Bar