It was inevitable. After years of wine consumption, shopping for wines became almost a burden in our small town. With the largest wine selection being three small rows of local, California and International wines, picking was slim.
With a vision and unlimited ambition, I quit my day job. The job that almost paid the bills. The job that gave me .74 hr raise over 6 years. The job I went to bed Sunday night dreading. I turned in my notice after one last check that there was in fact a liquor license available in my city to serve wine.
No business is born without a solid business plan. Knowing the local economy, I knew my business must have several avenues to generate revenue to pay the bills at the shop and provide for my personal needs as well. So I set out with signing a lease on a historic brick and mortar storefront and setting up the utilities. The former barbershop needed a lot of TLC to transform the building into what would become South Street Wine Cellar. With years of DIY Remodel Shows viewed, I was ready to tackle my project.
One cold January morning I set out to pick up the keys on my newly rented building and met the water department to turn on the water. Almost instantly my heart rose into my throat as water poured from an overhead area built to hide plumbing pipes in a building that was built before indoor plumbing was the norm in commercial structures. I had not prepared myself for this. I didn't know what to do. What to do first? My plan had a wrench in it and I was at a loss. This was not in my budget and I suspected I would say that in my head time and again before the remodel was finished.
On the way to my building that January I called my plumber to meet me and take a look at the plumbing when the water was turned on. He never showed. My neighbor shop owner and liason to the landlord brought over a couple, the husband whom wanted to take a look at the building he used to get his haircut in as a child. I learned that day and in the following months, the scope of this couples expertise and talents.
Working alongside each other we forged ahead. Without them, everything would have been an uphill battle. I needed to follow laws and regulations from the City Building Department, Fire Department, Zoning Department, the County Health Department and of course the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control. I learned what was required of me and they made it happen. They offered great advice on virtually every aspect of the project. I would have been absolutely lost (and sunk) without them. They have become very dear friends. I consider it their shop as much as mine.