Seth and Renee Brewer stand inside Wine + Market with the future Enoteca behind them. The building will be panted later this week.
Lexington, KY – The idea to open a cosmopolitan wine and tapas bar predates their purchase of Wine + Market on Second and Jefferson in 2011, but when the Wingspan Gallery directly across from their wine shop became available, Renee and Seth Brewer knew they had to act.
Enoteca, Italian for wine repository or collection, is set for a soft opening by mid-month, with a grand opening soon to follow.
“Enoteca is just the nighttime extension of Wine and Market,” said Seth Brewer, who has been leading the construction on the building, which dates back to the 1940s according to the Fayette County PVA website. “One of the things that Wine and Market provides that our customers appreciate is education. There’s a lot of trust that they have in Renee and our staff to get wines that are variedly correct and offer a good value.”
Renee Brewer is designated as a Certified Sommelier and wine educator, in addition to studying international wine marketing and management in Europe. She also has worked for a Napa Valley winery during a wine harvest and at a public relations firm that operated only for the wine industry.
“I had different visions and different ideas, and they were just kind of all pieced together from various places,” she said of Enoteca, which features a modern and sometimes industrial look, with hardwood floors that mimic tile.
“We did travel to a few places. When I traveled to take my wine exam, we were in San Francisco. Everywhere we could go to a wine bar, we went to a wine bar,” said Renee Brewer.
Brewer said she is currently one of 19 Certified Sommeliers in Kentucky and one of only three women to reach that level in the commonwealth.
The wine bar will also feature craft beers and a large bourbon selection under bar manager Clayton Brost. Enoteca will have a tapas menu curated by chef Elizabeth Maggi, a native of Madrid, Spain, with a Kentuckian father.
While food will not be the focus of Enoteca, the Brewers want it to be something that draws visitors back. The initial menu will feature cheese and charcuterie pates, gazpacho, castelliccio (a lentil salad), chorizo in a puff pastry, raw oysters and more. The plates will be in the $7 to $10 range, Seth Brewer said.
Enoteca is split between multiple rooms, creating what Seth Brewer calls a casual yet cosmopolitan drinking environment. There is also an al fresco option, featuring a 20- to 30-seat patio with a fence line adorned with grapevines.
Street parking is available, as are spaces in the former Jefferson Fitness lot down the street.