I visited two retail wine stores this week. Both were very nice and had friendly and helpful workers. The first store I went to was Chambers Street Wines on 148 Chambers Street. Quiet jazz music was playing creating a nice ambience. Although it was two in the afternoon on a Monday the store was pretty busy. I spoke to a worker, Andrea, and she gave me a tour and helped me through my experience. The store is cramped with wine and did not a lot of space to move around. There are hardly any ShelfTalker, Andrea told me to check their website for them. Andrea also told me the store was so crowded because they where having a wine tasting later on that day. They will be pouring six wines from these great estates: Domaine de la Pépière 2014 Muscadet “Gorges” and 2015 “Clisson,” Domaine Luneau-Papin 2014 L’ d’Or and 2017 “Terres de Pierres,” and Champagne Tarlant “Brut Zero Rosé” and “Cuvée Louise” NV (base 2000). I found this aspect of the store very interesting. I was very tempted to stay for the tasting. Sadly in order to navigate this store you would either need a store assistant or have studied wine. I think this store can have a better flow for customers to browse. I also think labels of regions could help the store tremendously.
The second store I visited was Sea Grape Wine Shop on 512 Hudson Street. This store was also cramped but it had a much more cozier feeling to it than Chambers Street Wines. Despite its cozy feel, it was much smaller then the first store and there was no music playing in this store. There were only the two workers in the store and there was no crowd. I spoke to a worker, Eric, and he also gave me a short tour of the small shop. This store also had no ShelfTalker. The price range in the store was much more affordable then the first store I visited. The flow was also better in this store. They had small label for all their wines and had a large selections of wine and champagne.
In both stores I was able to find red wines from Spain, sparkling wines that were not from France, and red wines from a region I did not know made wine; Australia and Brazil.
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed both experiences. Both workers were very kind and knowledgeable. Both stores could work on a clearer system of organizing the wine but that challenge is understandable. I would suggest Chambers Street Wines for catering, a tasting, or an expensive quality wine. I would suggest Sea Grape Wine Shop if you and your friend are walking around and want to visit a cozy store to learn a little about wine. You will walk out with something to your taste that will not hurt your pocket.
The Second Location sadly did not have any Shelf Talkers.