Uvarara means rare grape, and the Italian wine bar of that name is indeed something unusual for Middle Village, Queens. Hounds report home-style bites and well-chosen wines, served in a comfortable old-world setting.

The menu offers salads, meat and cheese platters, house-baked flatbreads and focaccia, panini (including a standout with bresaola, pear, and Gorzonzola), and the like. A section of small plates called piattini includes simple rustic dishes such as grilled shrimp or vegetables, meatballs in tomato sauce, polenta with mushrooms and fontina, and fagottini (zeppolelike fried dough purses) stuffed with cheese and tomato. Baked semolina gnocchi, with butter and Parmesan, is a smart order—amazing stuff, says pellegrino31.

This is a family operation with an inviting vibe and a friendly staff that knows the food and wine; “you feel like you took a trip to Italy,” says NYMike, “even if it’s just for a night.”

Uvarara [Middle Village]
79-28 Metropolitan Avenue (at 80th Street), Middle Village, Queens

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