WANT TO GO?
WHEN: 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 6 - Cabernets and blends
1 to 5 p.m. Dec. 12 - Holiday open house
5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 20 - Sparkling wines
WHERE: The Liquor Company, 1600 Patrick St.
COST: $5 to $20 for eight tastings, or individual by-the full glass prices
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The Liquor Company had a bit of an identity crisis. Known for its selection of liquors and beers, the store's wine sales weren't as high as owner Kim Winkler hoped. She enlisted the services of wine consultant Sam Uppala, who recommended changes.
"Kim invited me as a wine consultant to organize an update of the store and to market the wines," he said
For the first change, he increased the selection of wine varietals, producers and geographical regions represented on the wine racks. Then he started on the racks themselves. Last year, workers gave the store's interior a facelift, removing old shelving and racks and installing dark wood shelves and wine rack.
The user-friendly wine area is organized by clearly labeled varietals -- all the pinot noirs, Rieslings and cabernet sauvignons neatly stacked under their signs. Sometimes the varietals are subdivided by region. Customer questions are fielded by Uppala or staff members who receive frequent training.