TAMPA — Thirty-two years ago, Sharon Stewart opened one of the first wine bars in Central Florida. "And this shall be my last," said the owner of the Wine Studio, opened Sept. 5 on Henderson Boulevard, east of Lois Avenue. Stewart was co-owner and chef of 42nd Street Bistro on Howard Avenue for 10 years.
The neighborhood quickly welcomed the mini bistro behind the illuminated purple wall, especially those enjoying walking over for lunch and dinner to enjoy wine by the glass or bottle. "Seems like everybody who comes in says, 'I live right around the corner,' " Stewart said.
Soups, appetizers and desserts are listed with a suggested pairing. For example, a bubbly wine is recommended with foie gras topped with sauteed fig. Marinated London broil, sliced and chilled, goes well with a red wine. Try the huge cheese and fruit board, with or without artisanal sliced meats, with a white wine.
Rounding out the menu are salads (her signature blue cheese vinaigrette dressing is most popular), gourmet pizzas "and the best quiche in Tampa," Stewart said. Dessert choices include ricotta cake, nice with a red ice wine, and chocolate pate, perhaps with a robust zin.