Downtown & Vine – an urban wine tasting room – is seeking to bring the best of California wine country to K Street downtown, with a scheduled opening date of mid-October.
Co-owner Gregg Lamer said Friday that he and co-owner Kate Chomko think Sacramento needs a varied selection of wines from Sonoma, Napa, the foothills and other wine regions across the state, and the 1200 K St. location is the perfect fit.
“We’ll have 12 wineries, and we’ll feature three wines from each one,” Lamer said, adding that wine will be poured in 2-ounce tastes, 5-ounce glasses or flights of three 2-ounce tastes.
Of the 12 wineries, 11 will be the backbone of the business, while the 12th will rotate – likely bringing in high-end boutique wineries, Chomko said.
The names of the wineries aren’t being released as yet, pending Alcoholic Beverage Control approval for the space, but Lamer and Chomko said there will be a wine for everyone’s budget.
“We’ll have bottles you can take with you, and we’re expecting to retail those for as little as $15 and up to over $100,” Lamer said.
Chomko added that she wants to have affordable, everyday wine as well as wine that will draw serious collectors.
While not set up as a restaurant, the business will include food options such as smoked salmon hors d’oeuvres, artisanal cheeses and charcuterie plates. Details are still being worked out, but there will be a happy hour-type program with wine and food pairings, as well as wine education.
When it’s done, people entering the 2,350-square-foot space will see a wall of retail wine racks before turning left and seeing a concierge desk – where guidance on trips to wine country will be offered.
Along the left-side wall will be the bar. Wine will be up front, and the food preparation area will be toward the back of the building.
Seating for slightly less than 100 people will be offered both indoors and outdoors, with approximately 30 able to sit on a patio on the pedestrian part of K Street between 12th and 13th streets.
A private room with seating for 14 can be rented, and a more open rear section of the business will hold 30-40 people for standing receptions.
“This is perfect location,” Chomko said. “We’ve got the Convention Center, the theaters, the Capitol – all that is nearby. What’s not to like?”
Valerie Mamone-Werder, business recruitment manager for the Downtown Sacramento Partnership, said Thursday that the business is a good fit for the K Street area downtown.
“This is a really great business,” she said. “They have a long history in the wine industry, and they’re really great operators.”
She added that Chomko and Lamer understand what the city and business community is doing on K Street, which has undergone an overhaul in the past several years, and she said she thinks they will be a good part of K Street’s future.
Chomko said she has been a wine educator in the Napa, and Lamer recently sold two wine businesses he founded in Amador County. They are now moving to Sacramento, which they will be calling home.
“We’re excited to be here,” Chomko said. “Carmel, Monterey, Napa, San Francisco – they all have something like this, but Sacramento doesn’t. Sacramento has small ones, but nothing like this.”
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