The wine connoisseurs at the independently owned Cork & Olive Lake Mary franchise introduce visitors to international wines, most of which originate from small, family-owned vineyards. In addition to pouring samples at a broad, wooden table, Cork & Olive’s team hosts events that range from in-home tastings to the monthly Sip&Dip, where wines come paired with select appetizers. Besides the many bottles of wines, the shelves also display craft beers, sake, chocolates, and cheeses, as well as gourmet olive oils and spices. Specialty services include custom wine-bottle labels for events, special orders for hard-to-find wines, and gifts such as wine aprons and holders and memoirs from picked-over grapes.
Lined with mahogany-colored shelves, Wine Bank's walls display bottles upon bottles of wines, suggesting that its name is no misrepresentation. But unlike most wine shops, Wine Bank isn't just about wine. Here, beers, fine wines, and cigars complement an in-house menu of upscale starters and gourmet entrees, ranging from pork filet mignon to shrimp mac 'n' cheese. And for those who would rather drink wine than spend thousands building vineyards in their basement, Wine Bank offers memberships with discounts and invitations to private tastings and events.
Om Bar & Chill Lounge holds dominion over a deep vault of more than 120 beers and 100 wine selections seized from all parts of the world and chilled in captivity to pacify ravenous thirsts. Suds-seeking guests can select from throngs of bottled and draft beers; recent offerings include Sierra Nevada pale ale, Kronenbourg 1664, and Skullsplitter (pints start at $3.75). Wine aficionados can find liquid relief in the crisp finish of a glass of Capasaldo pinot grigio or an aromatic, palate-pleasing bottle of Fess Parker syrah (glasses start at $5; bottles start at $18). Dessert wines and specialty drinks keep flaky taste buds interested, and cigars and hookahs provide succor to olfactory organs, preventing nostrils from crying out in the middle of the night and having to be stuffed with potpourri.
Equipped with in-depth product knowledge and bottles from all over the world, the consultants of PRP Wine International waltz into homes ready to answer nearly any question a novice oenophile may have. As they pour samples for small groups, they explain everything from the intricacies of flavor profiles and the correct pronunciation of “pinot noir” to the most dramatic way to throw a glass of red at a mortal enemy. After tastings, guests can select any of the wine varietals sampled, all of which are chosen by PRP consultants after thorough scrutiny.
Though the days of secretive drinking during Prohibition are long gone, secrets still abound during Speak Easy Sundays at The Hourglass Brewery. By whispering each Sunday?s password to the bartender, patrons gain access to discounted craft beers until 11 p.m. and get their name added to J. Edgar Hoover?s enemy list. Other drink specials are available throughout the week, when libations from top craft breweries like Dogfish Head and Lost Coast flow from taps and bottles. Of course, Hourglass also supplies brews made in-house, from traditionally hoppy IPAs to ales flavored with butternut squash and cinnamon. Food trucks complement the pours every Friday; in upcoming months, Hourglass? taproom will even share space with Pape Bee?s and Wako Taco.