By Matt Goldstein & Amy K. Haight
The strip on Germantown Ave in Mt Airy Philadelphia is starting to pop. With McMenamin’s Tavern, the Earth Bread and Brewery, Umbriah, and the Wine Thief, there is no need to look further for a downtown style food and drink at an excellent price. The Wine Thief’s happy hour is absolutely ridiculous. $3 glasses of wine before 6 pm. Really? $3? When was the last time you had a glass of wine for $3? We don’t even understand how they could possible make money at that rate. As well, the wines they serve for happy hour are usually right off of their own wine list, which is always reasonable and selected well.
The wines featured for the happy hour we attended recently were the Bodegas Callia Malbec from Argentina and the Table Leaf Chardonnay. The Malbec was crisp, full flavored and slightly dry. For $3 per glass it’s a steal. You might be able to find this bottle for about $10 in the store, so if you’re looking for a malbec to not break the bank, give it a try. The Chardonnay was solid, perhaps not as crisp as we were looking for, but still very drinkable. And again, at $3 per glass, it’s still a great deal.
We started with the Pita Nachos with ezpazote, black beans, & avocado salsa. Excellent! It’s a must try. Then we had the Mac N’ Cheese appetizer (a special that was not on the menu that night, but we spied it on someone else’s plate and it just looked so good we had to order it.) Normally we wouldn’t order a 2nd appetizer in place of a meal, but when I saw the dish, it really wasn’t a choice. Then we had the homemade veggie burger. The burger patty was literally put together by hand in the Wine Thief kitchen. It was interesting, unique and tasty, and it was served with hand-cut fries that were delicious.
And if the awesome menu and outrageous wine bargains weren’t enough, the nightly viewing of TJ Hooker at the Wine Thief will keep us coming back. It may be the best part of the night. Forget sports; the clothes and haircuts alone on this classic 80s show can keep you in a conversation for the entire dinner, not to mention the cameos by some old school actors.
On side note, we also read some great reviews about the fried chicken and meatloaf, which we are definitely trying when we go back. All in all, we had two appetizers, a veggie burger, and four glasses of wine for a total of $35. The Wine Thief has excellent food and drink for an excellent price and we’re already planning a return trip. Also, when it’s not happy hour, the prices at the Wine Thief are still very reasonable. There were about 4-5 glasses of wine for about $7. It’s worth a try at anytime.