Wednesday night on my way to a late dinner I did a double-take – all by its lonesome a new wine and spirit shop lighted up the neighborhood. J&R Symposium, located on the corner of Union Street and Rogers Avenue in the Crown Height section of Brooklyn is a nice addition to the otherwise deserted strip, an unlikely spot for such a shop but oh what a breath of fresh air.
Today I visited with J&R and boy oh boy am I in Love. The space is amazing – it features an open floor plan, deep red walls with just a tad bit of exposed brick. The display shelving is strategically placed throughout the very large space making it easier for the ideal visitor to maneuver the store. The layout is a creation of James Lewis, one of the partners (his background in Interior Design definitely played a role here).
Partners, James Lewis and Ryan Granville both Brooklynites who currently reside in Bed-Stuy – began their vision for the space after a visit to vineyards in California wine country. They fell in love with the experience and knew they needed to bring this idea to Brooklyn. The space was obtained in December of 2014 and a few minor setbacks delayed the process however earlier this month they finally opened their doors to a new experience in Crown Heights.
While this is the partner’s first go at the Wine and Spirit business they have done their homework, first with choosing to open their doors South of Eastern Parkway (an unlikely preference for many) and second for deciding on opening in Crown Heights instead of the over-saturated Bed-Stuy.
James and Ryan have the right vision for their new shop – James says their “mission is to bring Good Wine to their customers at affordable prices” (mission accomplished there’s nothing in the shop priced over $34). They are aware that many of their customers may want to grab a bottle to enjoy after a long day at the office and will not only appreciate the affordability but the opportunity to browse a space that’s not cramped or caged up with Plexiglas (which is the norm for many Wine/Liquor stores in the neighborhood).
Their plan to have the space evolve into a Boutique Wine and Spirit Shop is well on its way – the space already possesses the feel. The shop offers both international and California wines as well as kosher options along with a variety of Bourbons and Whiskeys.
J&R will host wine tasting every Friday and Saturday evenings giving their customers an opportunity to familiarize themselves with what’s available to them however offering the partners an even greater opportunity to find out what their customers like. The shop also plans to offer dinner tasting, with the space already carved out for the event – I can picture a scene with patrons overlooking the tasting table each with a glass of some delicious wine in hand :).
The next Wine tasting is scheduled for September 25th from 5 to 8 PM – even if you’re not into that wine, the space alone is deserving of a visit. Let me know what you think.
A special thank you to James Lewis for being personable and accommodating.
Photo Via Brooklyn’s Lifestyle
1148 Union Street (at Rogers Avenue)
Brooklyn NY 11205
Monday – Thursday 11 AM to 10 PM
Friday – Saturday 11 AM to 11 PM
Sundays noon to 8 PM