Last weekend I did a bit of Park Circle exploration with a few friends of mine. We capped off our evening with some delicious wine and snacks at Stems and Skins, an upscale wine bar. For as small as the space was, I was quite pleased with not only how great our service was, but also with the very large, sophisticated selection of wine and the delectable and beautifully presented food.
Stems and Skins sells a selection of wines from all around the world, as well as charcuterie and cheese, Mediterranean-style small plates and a few seafood dishes. The restaurant is small but plays a killer music selection, has well spaced out seating, as well as outdoor dining. With the lights dimmed and the upbeat music playing, along with delicious wine in your hand, you will be feeling like you’ve been transported to a fancy wine bar in New York City.
Upon my visit to Stems and Skins, I enjoyed a glass of the “Mission” red wine, which is from California. It is unique in that the wine is very light in color and has a very sweet, though not too sweet flavor. It also has very earthy undertones. I loved this wine and was quick to order another! Along with this delicious wine, I enjoyed a few small plates with my friends. We opted for the whipped ricotta with fermented garlic honey and the roasted oyster mushrooms. Both dishes were crazy delicious. I loved the thick and creamy texture of the whipped ricotta, along with its slightly sweet garlic flavor from the honey pooled on top of the ricotta. The dish was served with toasted bread slices. The roasted oyster mushrooms had a slight salty flavor and the texture was on point, being right in between chewy and almost crunchy. The mushrooms were combined with chopped egg and salsa verde, providing a hint of spicy flavor as well. We finished the plate in minutes!
As for affordability, the price of the very unique wines are definitely up there, so for ultimate affordability I would choose a wine by the glass that is under $10. Don’t worry, I’m sure it will still taste delicious. The small plates are pretty reasonable in pricing. The roasted oyster mushroom dish only cost me $10 and the whipped ricotta rang in at just $9. Both small plates were pretty decent portions and were definitely enough to feed at least 2 people. That being said, there are a lot of really cool places popping up in the Park Circle area, so if you find yourself in that area, be sure to hit up Stems and Skins for an appetizer, dinner, or even post-dinner drinks and dessert!
It’s also worth noting that Stems and Skins very recently hired a new executive chef (Julian Lippe), who formerly worked in the kitchen at FIG. He is planning to introduce more dinner-worthy dishes, such as fresh pasta and fish. He plans to incorporate lots of local produce and other local and seasonal ingredients into his dishes as well. Be sure to head there ASAP!