It would be silly to pretend there aren't a few hundred places to get a glass of wine in Sin City. But grabbing a glass on the casino floor next to a video poker machine and grabbing a glass in a place that dedicates itself to wine, well, that's a different story.
And that's what brings the crowds into the Hostile Grape.
A wine bar in the truest sense, the Hostile Grape isn't just red or white, it's everything or anything, but that's jumping too far ahead. Let's start at the beginning.
Hostile Grape is located in M Resort, a resort that defies odds in Vegas (something you were probably planning on doing here, too) by bringing both locals and visitors to a place that isn't exactly within walking distance of much. But, to bring it back, it's places like Hostile Grape that make this happen.
The bar is an open space (perfect for grabbing a drink to mingle with your own party or meeting new people) peppered with a mixture of the usual elements and some unique features. There's an actual bar, an extensive wine fridge, comfortable, open and communal seating and a vibe that instantly makes you want to wear more than the usual T-shirt and ripped jeans -- it's that effortlessly cool.
But the real crowning jewel of the Hostile Grape is, as you might expect, the wine. It's not that Hostile Grape has such a wide variety that it can get overwhelming -- it's that you don't actually have to choose. You can have it all, at least to some extent. Scattered throughout the bar are several Enomatic wine serving machines and while that might not mean anything to you, allow us to explain.
The machines allow bottles of wine to be opened, but preserved, which means they can be served for a longer time and to more people, so you don't have to commit to an entire bottle like wine-drinking usually requires.
Clean glasses are stacked in the hundreds around the bar and customers purchase and load cards that are then swiped at a machine to get just a glass (a pour) of several different wines. Pours start around $2 and go up from there depending on the size, but that means you can have a taste of something you normally wouldn't be able to try -- either because you couldn't wrangle down a bottle or because you didn't want to spring for the whole thing.
With such a unique opportunity, the bar is definitely something of a scene -- the crowds are hip and the wine is plentiful. And that's nothing to get hostile over.
-- Review by Jamie Helmick