Iron Bridge Wine Company: Raise A Glass

Located in a former biker bar, the Iron Bridge Wine Company has left behind its shady past and developed into one of the finest places to sample a variety of vintages in the area. A spectacular wine list is the best reason to visit—the servers are knowledgeable about what they have on offer, and it’s accessible for the casual drinker, with very well priced bottles. If your stomach is rumbling, Iron Bridge Wine Company offers a robust and exciting tapas menu, overflowing with delicious small plates that are perfect to pair with wine, in the classic Spanish tradition. Be warned: this place doesn’t skimp on flavor, and many of their dishes pack a serious punch of garlic and spice. Don’t miss the braised pork belly appetizer, an astounding package of succulent, crispy goodness. The sesame-seared tacos are also unforgettable.

Iron Bridge Wine Company
10435 Route 108
Columbia, MD 21044
(410) 997-3456
www.ironbridgewines.com

Aida Bistro: A Columbia Wine Bar and Hidden Treasure

From the outside, you wouldn’t expect much from this restaurant, situated in a strip mall in Columbia, but don’t judge a book by its cover. Aida Bistro is an inventive, delicious wine bar and restaurant that has been winning raves from locals since it opened. The menu is an interesting combination of standards and some experimental dishes, which are hit and miss. The charred Caesar salad falls firmly in the first column—it’s one of a kind. The mussels in Dijon cream sauce with applewood-smoked bacon are also a fantastic twist on a French classic. Salad fans rave about the poached pear with bleu cheese and walnut plate, which has strong flavors perfectly balanced. For entrees, the lamb shank risotto is delectable, the meat falling apart on your fork. The décor is modern and understated, seats are roomy and service is top-notch.

Aida Bistro
6741 Columbia Gateway Dr.
Columbia, MD 21046
(410) 953-0500
www.aidabistro.com