Restaurant Review: New York, New York

Air’s Champagne Parlor

 photo by Gary He

Cozy into the jewel-toned velvet seats of this intimate Greenwich Village Art Deco boîte and get ready to explore the world of bubbles with reckless abandon. Owner Ariel Arce put together a menu that doubles as an educational crash course on the grapes, styles and region of Champagne, promoting easy conversation with the sommeliers floating around the room. You can drink well for under $100—try the Demière-Ansiot Blanc de Blancs, or R.H. Coutier Rosé—and find little-known bottlings like Vouette & Sorbée Textures, a pinot blanc fermented and raised in Georgian amphorae and used oak barrels. The menu shows respect to the shrine of Champagne with caviar service, rotating oyster selections, frîtes and charcuterie. Find yourself not wanting to leave? Head downstairs to Arce’s Tokyo Record Bar, an izakaya-style bar, and sip on more bubbly. You may even see her spinning some records.