Mon-Sat, 11:30am-10:30pm; Sun, 11:30am-10pm
4, 5, 6, 7, S at Grand Central-42nd St.
American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa
While hotel restaurants keep upping the glamour quotient, this comfortable, quirky little spot swings the other way – much like the low-key hotel that houses it. Dark wood and brown leather accents set a subdued tone; the room’s sole visual tic is a row of backlit Gothic arches housing stacks of wine bottles behind the bar. Local suits and skirts rule the room weekdays, with a few brave hotel guests meekly taking seats amid the commotion. They’re not here for the oily ersatz comfort food, like roast chicken or grilled salmon. The real draw is an eclectic, clever wine list with rarely seen varietals like Lambrusco and Alberino, along with original wine cocktails like hot chocolate and port, which is offered during winter months. With floor-to-ceiling windows that open in warmer weather, this makes a terrific people-watching spot; it’s coziest on Saturdays, when the restaurant is nearly deserted. Sharp-eyed diners might recall Madison & Vine’s previous incarnation as Branzini, Rick Moonen’s short-lived Italian seafood venture.Recommended Dishes
Caesar salad, $13; the Vine burger, $19