Sager + Wilde
Step aside, cocktails: wine is cool again. That much is clear from a visit to Sager + Wilde, a bright little boite on a quiet corner of Hackney Road. Opened by Charlotte Wilde and Michael Sager, both alums of some of London’s finest bars (Happiness Forgets, Milk & Honey), this stylish spot is staffed by a coterie of the young and apron-adorned, who are happy to sink into a lengthy chat about vines and varietals (complemented by sloshes of vino to try). And chat you will: the selection here is curated and ever-changing, and the owners have a way of snagging small quantities of special bottles; you’ll want to heed your server’s advice about what to order. If you’re not quite ready for a heady red, begin your night with a She & T (a refreshing fino sherry and tonic); after an hour or two, order the grilled cheese, a crunchy and molten confection that’s surely one of London’s best.