Food & Drink

Spotlight: V Wine Room

Concealed off Westbourne Drive, this tucked away wine enclave and shop features mainly boutique California and European producers but what you may not know is that this charming, Spanish style building was once a library back in the 1930s and previously Charlie Chaplin actor’s studio in the 1920s.

“We like to be known as a wine library speakeasy,” says owner Mikey Consbruck. “We love that we are hidden a little bit. We want our customers to be organic, word of mouth and a special find that they want to come back and bring their friend.”

Celebrating 6 Years

Seems that approach is working well, celebrating their 6th anniversary in February 2019, V wine room carries close to 100 wines by the glass with 200 bottles and at any given time. Nightly tastings take place at the V-shaped marble bar that has successfully built upon the concept of a wine library, “Imagine walking into the New York central library in 1933,” says Consbruck. The design features dark woods, pendant lighting, and bookcases, holding upright bottles of wine with the labels resembling reading material.

Meet the Winemakers

Special events are ever-evolving, “We’d like to think of ourselves as one of the authoritative wine places in LA.” This includes a monthly “Meet the Winemaker” series on the first Wednesday of every month with a discussion followed by a tasting of the wines which might include the only native American female winemaker, Tara Gomez, who only sources grapes from tribal Chumash land in San Ynez. “We want you to come in and learn about a new varietal that you’ve never tasted or even heard of, a new term or new technique in winemaking,” adds Consbruck.

“We are just trying to keep people really engaged,” he adds. “You go to a library to learn and read and at the wine room you fill out a library card which is stamped with the date so you can keep track of what you tasted.” This also comes in handy for a friend who wants to buy you a gift. For the holidays, Consbruck has assembled a range of host gifts with great bottles and wine openers or you can pick up one of their custom library gift cards.

Wine Pairings and Tastings

Blending labs are also popular where you can make your own bottle but food and wine pairing soirees can include a chocolatier who uses chocolate ganache in wine infusions and an Entomologist who is attempting to shift the perception on insects and wine pairing, “We want this to be a unique and educational classes for people to learn and expand their knowledge without going into a stuffy environment.”

If bugs and Chenin blanc is not your idea of culinary nirvana, you can choose from a Rhone varietal such as Piquepoul Blanc aged in concrete – an old-world French style that you don’t see very often in the U.S., a Boudeaux style rose from S.R. Tonella in Napa or an Australian Sparkling Syrah from Solminer SB county to name a few gems. The grapes can be paired with cheese and charcuterie from around the world such as a cave-aged sheep’s milk, or standby favorites from Humboldt Fog to Truffle Tremor from Cypress Gove and cabernet dipped salami, mortadella, turkey salami or even EOS Chocolates.

What’s Next

Next up for Consbruck, who is also a landscape architect, is expanding V Wine Lounge to a mid-century property in Palm Springs next February, and he’s developing a non-profit charity that will benefit the wine industry with a fund for disaster relief and scholarship foundation for education so aspiring Oenophiles can learn from the vine to the glass.

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