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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Bar Review: Palate Wine Bar

SERENITY NOW: This cozy Oakhurst spot proves wine bars don't have to be pretentious. The restored Scottish Rite Hospital has transformed into a low-key hangout decorated with a mix of antiquish furniture and dark walls covered in paintings by local artists from the adjoining gallery—the best spot is the window-filled room where you can gaze out onto the sleepy neighborhood.

WET YOUR WHISTLE: Wines are sold in four tiers available by the glass or bottle. The selection won't wow connoisseurs, but has a smart mix of New and Old World varietals. The bar also has an impressive list of small-batch spirits and Hot Buttered Rum from the seasonal cocktail menu is a nice way to take the edge off the cold weather.

A MATTER OF TASTE: The menu includes straightforward dishes such as bruschetta, macadamia nut encrusted scallops and baked tilapia - hardly revolutionary - but the chef's cheese plate would be perfect alongside a glass of wine.

Palate Wine Bar, 321 West Hill Street, 404-373-4702. Sun.-Tue., 6p.m.-10p.m.; Wed.-Thu.; 6p.m.-11p.m.; Fri.-Sat., 6p.m.-12a.m. www.palatewinebar.com.

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