Retail Beverage Shop

Yamir Nivar

HMGT 2402

Karen Goodland


Retail Beverage Shop



This is the front of the winery, which is one of the biggest in the area.


I live in Washington Heights for that reason I decided to go to a winery that I frequently go, which is PJ Wine, 4898 Broadway, nr. 204th St. Therefore, I used this place for the retail shop analysis, which was a assignment that I enjoyed a lot and at the same time learned many things within the wine industry. I was able to speak with one the supervisor who name is Tom, he is the one that is in charge to explain about each category of wines in the store. I noticed that they majority of wines they sell are from Latin America and Spain, they have a huge shelf from Spain. Tom was able to tell me which are the wines that they sell the most which Wines from Spain are, I also asked him a couple of questions about wines from France and he was able to recognize and tell me each of the wines region in France such as Alsace, Burgundy etc. They are very affordable prices for customers especially on wines from Latin America such as Chile, and Argentina. The shelf that I enjoy the most was the Toros shelf (Wines from Spain).






Red wine of a region I did not know they made wine, which is Uruguay. I was surprised because I really never thought that Uruguay was a wine maker country. However, I taste this wine ad it was gorgeous

A huge variety of red wines from Spain from the Toros Shelf, the store really offers a great variety of Spain wines especially from the wine region Rioja (Gran Reserva).

In the sparkling wines shelf the French sparkling wine are predominant, but one that caught my attention was a sparkling wine from Italy Prosecco Rustico.

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Retail Beverage Shop Analysis/Comparison

For the Retail Beverage Shop Analysis I went to Astor Wine and Spirits, located 399 Lafayette Street. I’ve never visited a winery before so this was going to be my first time and I was really excited. Upon my arrival, I noticed the decor, outside is a red flag with their name on it. It really catches your eyes. I wasn’t the only one walking in multiple people behind me walked in as well. I first browsed around and then went to speak with the store employee. I asked them how exactly are the wines organized since there is such a vast collection of multiple wines. It’s set up by country, then region, and last but not least the grape variety. Within each section each wine are priced at different expenses. The cheaper wines (but not cheap in quality) are on the bottom and as you work your way up the prices get higher. The company has 25 distributors and they work with the distributor strictly made for New York which makes sense. There’s many sections within the store and it is displayed by a circular sign above the section of each wine giving you information about the wines there. What amazed me was that there was a tasting area. I believe that’s a great idea because it gives the customer a chance to taste a new wine before buying and not liking it in the end. A huge wine shop like this should have a reason to be up and standing for as long as they have and I was told it was because of their great customer service (just like any other place, not just wine). They try not to cater and support big wine company or distributors, but instead try to support the smaller companies, which i think is great. Another thing they do is send emails to their customers about their wines. I was really surprised finding out the types of wine that came out of Mexico and I was able to go to the section and take a look. Mexico made red wine and that’s their specialty I was told. Overall, I enjoyed the experience and I would definitely visit and buy wine when I become of age from Astor Wine and Spirits. 

RedWine From Region I Did Not Know Made Wine . Mexico

Sparkling wine Not From France

Red Wine From Spain

Shelf Talker

Omega Fine Wine and Spirits, 23-18 31st street, Astoria NY 11105

I live in Astoria, Queens and I frequently visit Omega Fine Wine and Spirits, so I decided to write about them. The owners are from Greece, so they have a really big selection of Greek wines. It is a small retail wine shop, located in the shopping plaza near Ditmars boulevard subway station. Alex, who works here is an enthusiastic young man, always in a good mood and ready to answer all of the customer’s questions. Also, everyone that works there is so friendly and helpful.The staff is always willing to take a walk around the store with you to recommend something that fits your needs. They make you feel like a friend and this is why I like coming here so often.They have a wonderful selection of really nice wines for any budget and they are always coming up with different deals for loyal customers.

Front of the retail wine store

As I said, the store is really small, but they really offer many different choices. They have wine from many different countries.

Red wine selection

Sparkling wine selection

I asked about their best red wine from Spain and they recommended those 3 choices:

Red wines from Spain

Emilio Moro is the most popular Spanish wine among customers and it costs $25.99.

While I searched for the sparkling wine, one specific area caught my attention-it was marked as SUPER SALE and all the wines were under $5. I picked up one bottle and I saw that it was from Slovenia, which is so close to where I am from, Serbia and I couldn’t believe that Slovenia actually makes wine. The dust on the bottle and super sale tells me that many people don’t know it either.

Wine from Slovenia

My further research resulted in finding wines from Bosnia and Herzegovina, which I also didn’t know existed !! I was very excited to find wines from my sister countries.

Wine from Bosnia and Herzegovina

I only found only one shelf talker, but there were several deals and discounts throughout the store:

Shelf talker

One of the store’s deals and discounts

I chose to write about particular sparkling wine from Italy because Alex told me it was the most popular in the store. With its low price and great taste, many customers choose this wine over many others

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I also stumbled upon very interesting label that caught my attention. It had very interesting picture up from and very little information about wine, I found it very interesting and mysterious.

Interesting wine label

And, for the end of this assignment I wanted to leave a comment about the store weakness. As I said before, the sore is very popular among customers due to amazing wine selection, low prices and very friendly staff but the only thing that I find as the should improve is- marking the wine countries and making it easier for people to find what are they looking for. For example, I think they should mark the different areas of the store as : Wines of Italy, Wines of France, Wines of Greece etc. I believe that would be very helpful for their business.

I enjoyed this assignment very much.


Hunters Point Wines & Spirits

Hunters Point Wines & Spirits opened on Vernon Boulevard in 2006. One of the owners Marko Babsek who gave me the permission to take the pictures and also answer any question about the wine.

This wine store is located at 47-07 Vernon Blvd, Long Island City, Queens. A week before I made an appointment with Marko Babsek one of the owners. Marko was very cordial and made me feel welcome all the time.

Hunters Point Wines & Spirits in Long Island City

The house has a very beautiful European type colonial appearance. When I entered, I saw that it was relatively narrow, almost like a passage connecting another.

Be ready for a lesson in wine. If you ask the owner, Marko, for advice or information he is able to tell you anything you’d like to know. The best wine store in LIC.

Marko started telling me that his main costumers are neighbors who live around for many years. In fact, his familiarity is so great with everyone who knows about the tastes in wines of most neighbors.

They organize wine by regions for example these wines come from South Africa and its surroundings.

I asked him about which wine is the most expensive and it was this one which is of French origin and slopes for $ 2000 I think that is good for people who like expensive wine.

One of its priorities is to maintain its clientele by maintaining low prices and, of course, providing discounts from its suppliers.



Most of the wines of this establishment have notes about its composition and its quality that makes the client learn the differences between a European and an American wine.

Grand Itata Red wine from Chile Rogue Vine

Cholilla ranch from patagonia Argentina Malbec It contains red fruits and has great acidity. Good to combine red meats

Sauvignon Blanc 2018 Taft Street Russian River Valley Sonoma country. California Its color is pearl yellow Nose are aromas of green apple, grapefruit and white peach palate Crisp with lively acidity Pair with chicken, turkey, pork, chops and also fishes

France, Italy, Spain, the United States, New Zealand and some South American wines are the main wines they have. He told us that his guests ask for more wine from Italy and, in summer, Rose is more popular. The most expensive wine he has is Cabernet Sauvignon since 1997 and costs $ 450.

I realize that Marko is very knowledgeable about wine because he told me about the variety of grapes in the United States, like smelling a wine so that we know which one to prefer. In fact, tasting classes are held here. With what to combine each wine in short was a very pleasant experience and I realize that Marko loves his work. I will recommend my family and friends to visit this place.














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Vintage Harlem (Wine & Spirits)

When approaching the retail beverage shop analysis, I decided to stay within the neighborhood and access a local winery, Vintage Harlem (Wine Spirits). Located on 2235 Frederick Douglass Blvd, New York, NY 10027, Vintage Harlem provides over hundreds of different wines from your lowest selling item all the way to the vintage collection that usually prices at almost two-thousand dollars’ retail. The store itself, has a rustic look with brick walls and barrique type (wood) shelves. The inside is beautiful and feels as though you are walking into the storing or fermenting section of an actual winery. They have over 6 sections of regions that provide so many varieties of grape and shelved from least expensive to most expensive. Some of the regions inside were labeled France, Argentina, Chile, Spain, California of course and many more. Upon entering, I was greeted by the employee Marissa. I explained to her that I was here on an assignment mission and that I would need some of her expertise to answer a few questions. One of my first initial questions I had asked was “Where does the wine come from? Is it made here? She quickly responded and told me that distributors come to the wine store and they buy the quantity they need, specifics and region based items. Marissa rally knew her wine knowledge, solely, because she works there, is a wine consumer herself and studies wine. I asked her if she would be interested in becoming a sommelier and she chuckled and answered that she thought about doing it. However, her history knowledge would need to need to increase a tad more. I was told I could take photos in the winery and that I did. Absolute beauty of the setup with all the wines. The only downfall of the winery is that they didn’t necessarily have a “shelf talker” in the sections and that they keep their private back area open next to other regions and I witnessed the GM taking a nice snooze. It was funny but also very unprofessional, especially, if the stores’ traffic was busy and on demand. Vintage Harlem keeps their most expensive wines in this miniature black wine fridge with a lock and key and is opened when specifically asked. I couldn’t take a picture of the fridge cabinet, but I was able to see their 2013 Chateau multi red grape blend that was a grand total of one-thousand, five-hundred dollars. I knew wines ran high in price but I was so intrigued to try. Although, I didn’t, Vintage Harlem does in fact, allow wine tasting before purchase. And that is a huge part in wine selling because more than likely you’re inclined to purchase a wine or two that you tasted because you know for a fact that you like it! Vintage Harlem was absolute awesome experience and since it’s located in my neighborhood… I told Marissa that she’ll be seeing more of me for sure.

Red Wine from South Africa Region… Didn’t know wine was made here

“Shelf Talker”

Sparkling Red Wine from Autralia – Picture from Vintage Harlem Website

Red Wine From Spain – Vintage Harlem Website

Retail Beverage Shop Analysis

Taking my first steps into this wine shop, it was just as I imagined it too be. Solidified wood throughout the floor, dimmed lighting targeting each angle, and a strong scent of fruit and open wine bottles scattered throughout the store.  What wine shop was this?  It was Slope Cellars, located on 436, 7th Ave, Brooklyn.  The reason for me choosing this location was not only because it was an 8 min drive, but because the neighborhood is known for spending there Sunday afternoons sipping on a high-quality bottle of red wine.

Luckily for me I had a chance to speak to the manager, who presented me with one of his most sold red wines from Spain.  This wine was “Guimaro Riberia Sacra Vino Tinto.”  I asked him “what makes this wine sell so much”, he stated how it mixes well with spicy food and tacos, and in this area, people love tacos.  This red wine from Spain is a 2016 vintage, located in the region of Galicia.  The bottle comes with a natural cork, and the taste is known to be silky with a heavy aromatic smell.  A smell of pure red fruits and heavy spices.


Guimaro Riberia Sacra Vino Tinto

Next up was a very antique and tasty sparkling wine.  This sparkling wine is “Wiston Estate Blanc de Blancs.”  It is a 2010 vintage and located in the appellation of England.  The manager stated how it is a Chardonnay grape variety that pairs well with seafood such as crab or lobster.  He also stated how it attracts a lot of customers since it’s known as a very traditional wine style with an alcohol content of just 12%.  This sparkling wine gives off an aroma of apples and quite a few pastries, which even had me thinking of buying a bottle.

Wiston Estate Blanc de Blancs

Last but not least is a red wine from the region called Bandol which is located in Provence, France.  I did not recall this being one of the top wine regions in France, which came as a shock to me.  It put me in shock because the manager presented this wine as one of his top selling wines, and by coming from a region I haven’t heard of, was a bit surprising.  This wine was “Domaines Chateau Romassan Bandol.”  I was told the reason this wine was sold so much is because how affordable it was for such a high-quality wine.  The manager stated how this wine is worth every penny due to their mix grape variety.  Grape variety such as Cinsaut, Grenche, and Mourvedre, having an alcohol content of about 14 percent.  Paring with most greens, and veggies, “Domaines Chateau Romassan Bandol” is known as an everyday wine.


Domaines Chateau Romassan Bandol

Heights Chateau

One night while getting off of a mid shift, I decided to visit a local wine shop in Downtown Brooklyn. I chose to explore Heights Chateau, 123 Atlantic Avenue. A fifteen-minute walk from the Barclay Center. I had a few options for transportation. I could take the B63 bus, the four or five trains one stop, a $4 uber or preferably walk. All being around twenty minutes of travel time. I walked down Atlantic Avenue to get a feel of the neighborhood. There were a few medical centers, old churches ( even an abandoned church that creeped me out), and thrift stores. These places were mixed in with new restaurants, a Trader Joe’s, and clothing stores like Urban Outfitters. As I reached Heights Chateau, the shop was the brightest on the block, the header is big and bold, and the outside was a mix of glass and black wood. As I walk in my focus is directed towards the big round counter that is in the front center of the store. To my right side, there are Italian wines going up the wall and down throughout the Aisle. To my left is the same set up of a different region of wines. I am approached by Lourel, an employee at Heights Chateau. I explain to her that I am a college student analyzing wine shops and if it was okay if I asked questions and take images of the store. She was aware of the project already and gladly assisted me. We started off with a brief background of the store. The owner is Italian, hence the display of Italian wines in the front of the store, he opened the store 30 years ago by converting it from a furniture store into a wine shop. The vineyards they would purchase from are M.S. Walker, Touton, USA Wine Imports, and etc. The store has a wine cellar downstairs that store more of the expensive wines, ranging from $100- $1,000. The store has a Wine of the Month Club, where you can receive two bottles of wines a month. Membership varies by the number of months you wish to join for. Ranging from a three-month plan to a twelve-month plan. The store is broken down into regions and then grape variety/appellations. Prices are shown below each wine. The store layout reminds me of a supermarket with the aisles and region signs posted.  The shop carries regular liquor as well. The store is targeted towards customers who either study wines or know what wines they like to drink. Not much interaction is needed towards employees unless it’s for minor questions and suggestions. The shop is a mix of traditional, industrial, and french country theme. I found interesting is that they had a Sake section with over 10 varieties. For those who may not know, Sake is Japanese rice wine and the places I’ve commonly seen them are in Japanese restaurants. Before saying my goodbyes, I purchased a 2015 Trocken Riesling from Germany, which I’m excited to try. I would go back to Heights Chateau because the atmosphere is quiet, the employees are knowledgeable, and the set up is mid modern which made me enjoy my experience. 


Lourel from Heights Chateau

This is Lourel a shelf talker. Her future goal is to become a Sommelier in a restaurant. In Heights Chateau their shelf talkers are wine advisors. They taste every new wine that the store has. They assist customers by asking about price points, pairings, and wine preference.

Cool design

A 2016, Llenca Plana, Montsant. Red wine from Spain. Priced at $14.99.

South African wine

2015, Mountain Red, Thelma. A South African red wine. There are six grape varieties in this wine. Priced at $14.99.


2016, cava, Raventos i Blanc, de Nit. Sparkling wine from Spain. Priced at $21.99.