The name itself is suggestive enough. There is something mischievous and almost deliciously dirty about “wet bar” that lingers on the back of your tongue when it leaves your lips, similar to the aftertaste of a Rioja Tempranillo.
In fact, there is little such romance. The term merely signifies that a bar counter in the home has running water, most likely via a sink.
Unfortunately, for us De Niro–philes, this type of wet bar is more Philadelphia Story than Untouchables, but such is life. Many traditional luxury apartments and townhouses in Manhattan are equipped with private wet bars, but today’s wet bar is evolving past its cookie-cutter sink of yore.
Some of the chicest and more creative alternatives include a $5,275 Marcel Breuer teewagen used as a bar cart in one high-design home, and the wine-tasting room. The wine-tasting room, or wine grotto, at 8 Thomas Street—yours with the almost $4 million apartment for a mere $399,000 extra—has heavy timber joists and beams and a brick-laid floor, and promises to be “a unique entertaining experience.” The wine-tasting room in the triplex penthouse at the Bouwerie Lane Theater is paneled on all sides with raw cedar, a traditional material used for wine storage and tasting rooms that, in addition to protecting the wine, “smells wonderful,” developer Adam Gordon adds.
“The only wet thing about the wine-tasting room is the vino,” Roberta Golubock of Sotheby’s said. “After all, the wine-tasting room may well be the wet bar of the new millennium!” —Chloe Malle