Booth's Brewing outfits customers with quality beer- and wine-making supplies, from Briess dry malts to brew kettles by Blichmann Engineering. Hops-savvy staffers also guide students through the basics of crafting custom beers at home with beer-brewing classes. The sessions familiarize students with standard brewing equipment and ingredients, arming them with the theoretical and practical knowledge to successfully make beer at home without fitting their bathtub with a blowoff hose.
A towering wine rack spans an entire wall and glimmers with more than 1,000 bottles. Across the room, a lineup of nitrogen-regulated Enomatic machines dispenses samples from 80 wines to be sipped, swirled, and theatrically spit while reclining on a leather sofa, or while sitting at the long wooden bar. Small, shareable plates populate Sarasota Vineyard's menu in the forms of cheeses, roasted olives, and prosciutto-wrapped figs, ideal for pairing with wines or barley pops from a list of 20 beers.
Located mere steps from where Gulf fishermen dock, The Reef’s glass counters overflow with a bounty of fresh catches from the sea and meats flown in daily, complemented by a robust collection of wines. The warm, shallow waters of the Cedar Keys yield baskets of fresh clams (market price, changes daily), prized for their easy home preparation and for dumping over the heads of winning water-polo coaches. The mild, sweet meat of Florida spiny lobster (market price, changes daily) requires little in the way of spice or preparation to unlock its flavor, and thick filets of mahi mahi (market price, changes daily) await only the kiss of fire to provide a succulent meal. Bottles of wine ($5–$17) line the shelves, including the Tabali sauvignon blanc, which pairs nicely with fish, and the Puerto Viego pinot noir, whose full, palate-expanding flavors provide safe harbor for storm-wracked model ships.
Winner of two gold metals and five silver medals at the Indy International Wine Competition, the Florida Winery prepares its Vino Florida wine on-location and often infuses it with tropical fruits, including raspberries, strawberries, kiwis, and melons. Vino Florida's blends and traditional wines are sure to please both vino novices and difficult-to-impress wine connoisseurs alike. A bottle of the Vino Florida ORWI, a species of flavorful fermented Florida orange juice, arrives stuffed with enough fruit to stave off scurvy in malnourished sailors' monkeys ($14.99). Free wine tastings are offered at The Florida Winery store, so you can meet the winemakers and hone in a bottle that best complements your taste buds. The shop also concocts ice cream made from its own wine and stocks a diverse supply of gourmet foods sourced from the Sunshine State, including coconut candies, spices, salsas, and more.
Though most vintners have made their wines from grapes, the Shook family turned their focus to other fruits. Starting in 1991, they began fermenting batches of juice from mangoes, red raspberries, limes, and oranges. In 1997, they opened their farm winery—a small barn-shaped building shaded by trees—where licensed winemakers and distributors ferment and bottle dozens of varieties of exotic wines stamped with the Sunshine Tree, the Florida Department of Citrus's mark of quality. Their eclectic selection encompasses citrus, tropical-fruit, berry, stone-fruit, and vegetable wines, each made entirely from the juice indicated on the label. The winery also makes and distributes wine-smoothie mixes and wine pouches, sherries, ports, and champagnes.
Green Organix Restaurant, an extension of Peter Gillham’s Nutrition Center, culls from organic ingredients to make up dishes that reflect many cultures and styles, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. The restaurant stocks house-baked breads along with 100% organic, free-range, and grass-fed burgers. A recent addition to the menu, the organic salad bar shows off 20 different fixings and local ingredients, along with made-from-scratch salad dressings and freshly plucked salad bowls.
Using high-quality crushed grapes imported from all over the world, the team at Aspirations Winery has been churning out low-sulfite wines since 2003. They ferment grapes into smooth, premium flavors that are comparable to those of commercially produced wines that come at twice the price and with twice as much luggage. Fruit-infused wines accompany traditional reds and whites on the shop's shelves, and if customers can't find what they're looking for, Aspirations readily stretches its arm around the globe to tap the shoulder of an appropriate supplier.
In addition to its arsenal of potables, the winery also runs a labeling service, printing custom designs that are scratch resistant and safe to dunk into tubs of water during games of bobbing for bottles.