Finally, a place for uppercrust Fort Worth Westsiders to gather other than the Rivercrest Country Club. Just kidding, Winslow’s Wine Cafe serves folks from both sides of the bricks. And judging from the constant crowds I think a few people from nowhere near “the bricks” have discovered Winslow’s as well. The smoothly contemporary wine bar serves wine and wine friendly food in an old converted gas station.
Everyone from blinged out, fur-vested ladies to jeans-wearing guys watching ESPN populate the bar area. Small sofas make up a “loungy” area if you’re looking to get cozy. If you like your vino al fresco, Winslow’s has a primo patio that’s making me yearn for spring. Heaters extend the patio season, but on my last visit in 40 degree weather the heaters were not working their magic. Our hostess managed to move us to a spot by the wood burning oven in the dining area, ahh that’s more like it. The dining area has banquette seating and small tables that remind me of a modern European bistro.
The Food (And Wine)
On our first visit to Winslow’s, the knowledgeable waitstaff expertly steered us towards a a glass of Gougenheim Tempranillo ($8) and a Campo Viejo Tempranillo ($13-yeouch). Winslow’s has a few $7 glasses, but all of us cheap wine aficionados would appreciate a few more added to the list.
On another visit my husband and I ordered bruschetta ($8) to start our dinner. Though the bread was nicely grilled and crunchy, the toppings were slightly under seasoned and didn’t deliver the crisp zing of freshness I was looking for. They were topped with a tomato-red onion mixture, white beans, or tapenade. Perhaps I had visions of myself as a blinged out, fur-vested lady when I decided on the decadent and priciest dish on the menu, The Lobster Ravioli ($19). My husband ordered the House Gnocchi ($14).
My Lobster Ravioli arrived swimming in a lovely sauce that I worried might be too heavy. After one bite, I found that the fennel infused sauce had just the right amount of richness without being too heavy. The homemade pasta lightly ensconced the succulent lobster filling. I savored the strands of lobster that I found in my sauce, but a few more would have been welcome. Overall I was happy with the dish and sopped up every last bit of sauce.
The gnocchi came out looking picture perfect and the butternut squash beurre blanc sauce didn’t drown the gnocchi. The texture of the gnocchi could have been lighter but the flavorful sauce with crispy pancetta balances out any issues I might have had with the gnocchi itself. The raw sage that topped the dish would have been great if it had been given a little flash fry in some butter (I love the combination of crispy fried sage with pasta).
We were with friends and they ordered the Spinach and Chevre Pizza ($18). I was too into my Lobster Ravioli dish to notice that my friends were quickly devouring their Pizza. It must have been good because it disappeared before I could think to ask for a bite. I will take their word that it was good. Also a note to anyone who dines with me, “Save me a bite!”, please.
On the recommendation of the waiter we ordered a bottle of Syrah from the Anglim Winery, Paso Robles ($44). The medium bodied wine was like Richard Simmons reading Nietzsche – deep but fruity. It complemented our pasta dishes nicely.
The dishes plus the wine made our total add up, but it was worth it. When we go back I think we could order 2 salads ($8/each) and a 14 inch wood fired pizza ($14-22) along with a cheaper bottle of wine and wind up with less sticker shock while still enjoying a great meal.
At these prices I expect a higher level of service. On our first visit we were perfunctorily handed a wine list. The dinner service didn’t fare much better when our waiter forget my friend’s Lobster Ravioli order, but to be fair they were quickly able to get the order out when we reminded them. In general the waiters seemed to buzz around frenziedly. What’s the hub bub, is somebody more important than me here? (oh wait that’s the fur vested lady in me talking) However, when the waiters do stop to pay attention to you they give excellent recommendations on the wine.
Winslow’s offers a lovely alternative to hanging out in a bar and drinking watered down mixed drinks or the throat stripping wines that are usually served in “bars” (hello, Corbett Canyon I’m talking about you). If you’re looking for a spot to stop by and have a glass of wine or to gather with friends Winslow’s is the place, it’s even first date worthy. The outdoor patio seems perfect for enjoying warm summer nights as well as crisp fall evenings. The dishes are creative yet without pretension while also being delicious.
Yes! 3 out of 5 wine glass clinking panthers. Cin Cin!
I Eat This
5PM – 10PM Monday through Thursday
5PM – 11PM Friday and Saturday
* They offer a Happy Hour on Monday, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays from 5-7PM where wine and food are discounted
Winslow’s Wine Cafe
4109 Camp Bowie
Fort Worth, TX