926 S. Presa St. • (210) 225-2547
Beyond the obvious draw of solid New American cuisine served in a stylishly restored Southtown filling station, chef Mark Bliss' namesake restaurant boasts one of the city's most unique and wide-ranging wine lists. Curated by manager/maître d' Daria Kossowska — who's originally from Poland and studied at the American Sommelier Association in New York — the selection is sourced from up to nine different distributors and represents wine-producing regions across the globe. Approachable, eclectic and periodically updated with unusual new finds, the Bliss list runs the gamut from $8 and $9 glasses (an Italian rosé and Spanish rioja among them) to bottles that span from $31 (for a 2013 Nortico Alvarinho from Portugal) to $210 (for a 2012 Napa cab out of Stag's Leap Wine Cellars). Heavy hitters like Opus One ($475) and Cristal ($440) top a small reserve list focusing on European and California wines. Thanks to its handy Le Verre de Vin Tower (a device that extracts air from bottles of still wines and injects CO2 into bottles of bubbly),
the restaurant can serve higher-end offerings by the glass, including Veuve Clicquot for $26 and a Penfolds Bin 407 for $25. In keeping with Bliss' relaxed approach to fine dining, the snug bar area and low-key patio set the stage for sipping wines and sampling new things. As Kossowska puts it, "Glasses of wine are like grandma's cookies, you can never have just one."