Darryl over at Cork Bottle Shop on NE Alberta and 28th, has decided to close his shop for the next six months. Here is the newsletter he sent out:
After 8 years of tending our humble wine shop on 29th & Alberta, through economic ups and downs; through attempts to expand into multiple locations and then consolidate back to just one; through a never ending sea of wine choices with perpetual vintage changes available to us in this great city; through launching a new winery this past summer and physically building a production facility in our backyard, right up to getting our first home vintage barreled down; I’ve come to the realization that it’s time to take a break, recharge my batteries and ponder how best to serve customers, family and life in the future.
With that in mind, the shop will be going dark for the next six months. During that time, I’ll be assembling a bottling line at the winery and getting our next vintage of Viola Wines ready for sale, while thinking hard about how I want Viola Wines and cork to co-exist. We also hope to pursue some construction at the shop to divide the space and seek a tenant for a portion of the building, if we can work out a feasible scenario with the City. It’s no secret that Alberta Street has exploded in recent years and with rising rents, it’s no longer financially prudent as owners of the building to under-utilize the space. A new layout, a new neighbor and perhaps a completely reinvented concept will emerge from the construction dust, but until I have a chance to step away and truly analyze what that should look like and how best to balance that against the growing needs of the winery, I can’t say what the outcome will be.
This is not an easy decision to make, but for now it is the right one for me. The day to day experience of serving loyal customers gives me great satisfaction and drives my energy to offer the best possible shopping experience. While it’s rewarding, it can also be exhausting. This year in particular has taken its toll, and at this non-stop pace, I feel I can’t catch my breath long enough to make smart decisions about the future. I am hopeful that taking some time away will open up new possibilities and re-ignite my creative energies. I promise to keep you posted throughout the journey, so keep an eye out for an email update as well as occasional twitter and Facebook posts.
One thing that is certain, there will be a new round of Viola Wines ready for the Spring release by June 2014. I will send updates on that progress and plans for getting those new creations into your hands.
For now, we will continue with our planned holiday hours through December 31st, so if you need to stock up on anything, please come by and visit before the year is over. We will also be clearing out some inventory, so come check out big savings up to 50% off on Wine Accessories, Beer, Cider and packaged Specialty Foods, plus a few wine specials sprinkled around the shop.
I can’t thank you enough for all of the support you’ve shown me over the past 8 years. I wish you all the best in 2014 and look forward to seeing you again soon.
Darryl is a class act (and has written for this site). I wish him the best!