photo: Laren SpirerTucked beside B Bar on East Fourth, Gothamist tried the sweet little wine bar called Aroma that doesn’t just smell good, it sparkles. Partners Alexandra (at the door) and Vito (behind the bar) came from the corporate business and wine sales world respectively but clearly adore working in candle rather than florescent light, and with each other. They found their chef, Chris Daly, working in the not-for-profit world and brought him in on the plan for the space (formerly a clothing store) with their shared romantic vision.

Before the teeny bar sounds too cloying or we start using the “r” word too much, it’s not just for dates (full disclosure: we might have been on one when we were there, we’re still not sure). At the long, knotted and tactile bar from Sri Lanka via Brooklyn, we tried the Gragnano, a light, barely sweet sparkling red wine with a dry finish ($8). Never a big fan of sparkling wines (they remind us too much of frat boy attempts at punch) we loved it and were nearly addicted -- ask for it, because it’s not on the menu yet. Our friend had the Montelegrino ($7), also good, though less horizon-expanding.

The menu is a bit intimidating for a bar/kitchen but the staff is very open to letting you linger over a glass or share a single appetizer. Our choice is the stuffed calamari ($13), though the shrimp ($13) were also good. The calamari is stuffed with crushed almonds and hearty spices and the shrimp and is filling enough to prevent you from getting drunk on a first date. If you were crushing on someone we’d recommend the front table under the chandelier while it can still sparkle at dusk or, later, the back booth swathed in velvet for canoodling.

The wines are draw enough, though, and if you need another glass to rehash the gory details of an awful day, sharing the chocolate hazelnut praline and blood orange dessert ($8) isn’t a bad idea, either. Though Aroma hasn’t unseated our favorite wine bar ever, ‘ino, we’re kinda smitten.

Aroma, 36 East 4th Street, Greenwich Village, 212-375-0100.