The Wine Market, always a little slice of wine connoisseur heaven, reopened its doors in May, sporting a delectable cheese shop and a renewed, refreshed design.Located on Bardstown Road at Lucia Avenue, The Wine Market is next to NV Tavern. Both The Wine Market and Old Town Liquors, another reliable source for libations, are co-owned by Claudia and Gordo Jackson, who were thrilled to reopen The Wine Market after the three-month closure. Claudia says it was “definitely a great feeling to see everybody again.” The Wine Market is “funky, just like the Highlands. I wouldn’t live anywhere else. Our family is part of the neighborhood, and we want our stores to be too.”
Those three months saw more than just the addition of the cheese shop – the entire building was renovated. Built in 1897 as a grocery store and purchased by the Jacksons nearly 11 years ago from End-O-Bin, The Wine Market storefront is now a gracious charcoal color, with a renovated facade, new foundation, reinforced floor and rebuilt window casings. All the carpeting was removed and replaced by a solid oak floor, and brick was exposed on the interior walls of an upstairs apartment as well as in The Wine Market. The ceiling, which had been dropped to 12 feet, has now been restored to its original, dramatic 20-foot height, adorned with tin tiles and bead board.
The Wine Market is a natural home for those just starting to learn about wine, as well as for those with a nose for a delicious bargain, thanks to its specialty in European and domestic wines at or below the $20 mark. Personalized service is a hallmark of the shop, where knowledgeable staff members make a habit of chatting with each customer in search of the perfect quaff. Claudia makes it clear that “customer service is our goal at both stores, where we offer value and a smile.”
Manager Kenny Andreozzi is proud to carry an outstanding selection of French and Italian wines, which are not easy to locate around town. “We do our homework so there’s always a great bottle you can find that’s well priced,” he says. Claudia emphasizes products that are as locally produced as possible to reduce the carbon footprint. “A Wisconsin wine can be as good as a French one,” she states.
The Wine Market also features a strong bourbon selection, an array of beers, and an expanded refrigerated case for wine, beer and other beverage options.
The cheese shop has come to life in the back portion of The Wine Market space. Cheeses are available in quantities suitable for tasting, as cheese trays, or even by the pound. Deli meats like prosciutto, pancetta and gourmet sausages complete the experience. Samantha Williams, manager of the cheese shop, proclaims, “There’s nowhere else on this grand strip where you can go for deli-sliced salami and pancetta, or cheeses from around the world, or Kentucky Proud products by the pound.”
The Wine Market tries to source their products as close to home as they can while still representing fine global taste experiences. One irresistible example is the Sapori d’Italia goat cheese, a Kentucky Proud product of Nicholasville made by Giovanni Capezzuto, an artisan cheesemaker from Naples, Italy. Claudia describes the cheese as “an Italian style goat cheese, firmer and different” from other goat cheeses available in town.
Williams sums up the spirit of The Wine Market when she says she wants every customer to “walk away feeling they’ve learned something” about the specialty products, which you “can’t find in Kroger or the larger corporate-owned stores.” Cheers, and pass the cheese knife!
The Wine Market is open Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, visit thewinemarket.net. The Wine Market, 1200 Bardstown Road, (502) 451-7446.