Wine Retail Store Analysis

The first wine retail store I visited was SIP Fine Wine, located on 67 5th Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11217 ( The store is owned by Nick DiMinno, and I had the pleasure in meeting Doug, an employee at the store. Doug was very nice and was happy to help me with my retail project.  He educated me how most retail wine shops purchase its wine. Usually, the buyer would seek out distributors and vice versa. The store mostly carries France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and USA wines. The owner does not cater to the customers’ demands and DiMinno buys “whatever he wants”.  Doug was friendly and not intimidating, just like the environment of the store. It has a nonchalant, hipster, and personalized feel. It does not carry very expensive wines. Most of the wines are affordable and are high-quality wines.



SIP Fine Wine Store Front



The retail store aligns the wines from the most affordable on the bottom and the most expensive on the top shelf. From the left, there are red Italian wines, however, they put the white Italian wines on a different shelf at the back. I found it pretty hard to navigate through their wines unless I asked Doug where things were. There are no large labels to distinguish what country you are looking at unless you read the wine label.


Closer view of the wines. As you can see, the store left some empty spaces. I am not sure if the employee just did not restock the wine or they are in shortage of wine. But as you can see, the wines are quite affordable! All the wine bottles are displayed standing up.

IMG_20151004_151812 View from the back of the storeIMG_20151004_151803View from the checkout desk.

IMG_20151004_151752 A nice selection of hard liquor as well.


The second wine retail store I visited was Red White & Bubbly at 211 Fifth Avenue Brooklyn NY 11215 ( When I first saw the store front, it was not very appealing, especially when there is a law office in between the store. However, a friend of mine told me the wine store has been there for a long time and is a local favorite. I decided to check it out. The store is much larger than SIP’s store and carries a large selection of wine. What attracted me the most about the store was the large storage cellar in the back. I heard a retail employee, Mario, saying how important it is to store wine properly to a customer. When I talked to Mario, he was very friendly and passionate about his job. He told me they put out only one expensive type of wine out and put the rest in the cellar for proper storage. Since expensive wines’ turnover rate is low, it would not make sense to put them out on display. He allowed me to go into the cellar to view the storage. Inside, it is very cool and dark. All the wines are stacked horizontally to keep the cork moist. When I asked which wines sell the most, he told me it depends on the season and it is not necessarily the American wines that are sold the most. In the summer, most people buy rose. During the fall and winter, people start going towards reds and hard liquor. The store supplies their inventory based on customer demands. I asked Mario what is his biggest challenge when he deals with customers and he said it is mostly the food pairings questions. He said since he is not a chef, he finds it a challenge to pair the wines, so he studies the type of food that wine region mostly eats. Based on those facts, he is usually able to pair the wine with the food pretty well.


The storefront for Red Wine & Bubbly. As you can see, there is a law office there as well.

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The store is very well organized compared to SIP’s. Due to the store size and volume of wines, the store is organized by country or by region. All the reds are stored against the wall and the white wines are in the middle of the store. It is very easy for anyone to navigate through then.


From the cashout desk, you can see the large dark storage in the back

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Inside the cellar



View from inside the cellar. Mario turned on the lights for me to see the wines. I could not stay inside for long because it was quite chilly and I did not want him to keep the llights on for so long!