Food & Entertaining | October 2013
The Greencork wine bar just arrived in Memphis’ Cooper-Young district and promises to delight wine enthusiasts in a setting as friendly as the corner café and as sophisticated as a glass of sauvignon blanc.
Robin Brown and Katy Sloan, the mother-daughter duo who brought Greencork to life, aim to demystify the wine experience for MidSoutherners. “While art, science and a little magic surround the process of wine,” says Brown. “Selecting the best wine comes down to what you like.” For customers, this process is as simple as stopping by, purchasing a prepaid card and pressing a button to sample wine selections by the ounce. A loyalty program, complete with specials and earned rewards, is already in place for repeat patrons.
Greencork’s self-service format allows guests to mingle in a relaxed environment and taste several wines or fill their glass with two, four or six ounces of a preferred label. Four high-tech Italian wine dispensers, capable of keeping an open bottle of wine fresh for up to 60 days, present a rotating stock of 32 different wines. Two dispensers offer a range of reds, and the other two, a variety of whites. Full bottles, splits and craft beers are available from the bar and a selection of cocktails will be added soon. Sodas with a hint of flavors such as Ginger Peach, Basil Blackberry, and Cucumber Mint welcome guests who prefer a fresh, nonalcoholic beverage.
Guests are invited to complement any wine tasting soiree with one of Greencork’s picnic baskets for two, customized with seasonal appetizers, or choose from a menu of homemade specialties served in small portions. Some of Brown’s recent menu additions are Watermelon Gazpacho, Chicken and Dumplings, and Ice Cream Sliders.
“The primary goal here is to make the wine selection process fully accessible to all,” says Sloan. Returning to the aforementioned comfort of a corner café, customers are invited to mix a little business with pleasure at this neighborhood wine bar complete with free Wi-Fi, comfortable couches and a fireplace. Those who prefer to leave work behind are invited to partake in the Greencork sommelier for a wine-tasting workshop.
Greencork is the culmination of Brown’s extensive career as a restaurateur and Sloan brings hip, creative perspective to the table with a background in graphic design. Both ladies emphasize their goal to support other local businesses, especially their neighbors in Cooper-Young. They envision guests who might relish an all-encompassing night out in one of Memphis’ premier neighborhoods. Why not begin with an appetizer and beverage at Greencork and then continue to one of many notable restaurants within walking distance? Of course, the menu of smaller servings at Greencork welcomes those with heartier appetites — simply order two or try more than one of their seasonal tasting plates. Additionally, Greencork occasionally hosts “Test Kitchen Tuesdays,” where early patrons are permitted to sample a number of delectable dishes at no charge.
And no enterprising Cooper-Young restaurant would be complete without a healthy dose of artistic offerings from the locals. Brown met artist Darin S. Little in line at one of the friendly corner cafés in the area and their conversation led to the current series on display at Greencork, a set of pop-art drawings created by Little for the opening of this deliciously clever venue.
Greencork hours are Tuesday through Thursday, 4 to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 4 to 11 p.m.; closed Sunday and Monday.
Wine is for Everyone
The mother-daughter duo behind the Midtown Memphis’ Greencork brings an array of wonderful wines to the masses
Story By Christian Owen