V Wine Room is West Hollywood’s Wine Library
Learn about, sip, and purchase unique wines at this cozy enclave
Concealed off Westbourne Drive, this tucked away wine bar 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 before that Charlie Chaplin’s rehearsal 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
It seems that approach is working well; V celebrated their 6th anniversary in February 2019. They now carry close to 100 wines by the glass and 200 bottles at any given time. Nightly tastings take place at the V-shaped marble bar. The design features dark woods, pendant lighting, and bookcases holding upright bottles of wine with the labels resembling reading material.
“Imagine walking into the New York central library in 1933,” says Consbruck.
Meet the Winemakers
Special events are ever-evolving, including a monthly “Meet the Winemaker” series on the first Wednesday of every month. A discussion is 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’d like to think of ourselves as one of the authoritative wine places in LA,” Consbruck says. 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.”
“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 assembled a range of host gifts with great bottles and wine openers. They also sell custom library gift cards.
Wine Pairings and Tastings
Blending labs where you can make your own bottle are also popular, but food and wine pairing soirees can include a chocolatier who uses chocolate ganache in wine infusions or an Entomologist who is attempting to shift the perception on insects and wine pairing.
“We want this to be a unique and educational class for people to learn and expand their knowledge without going into a stuffy environment,” Consbruck says.
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 Bordeaux 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 including cave-aged sheep’s milk, Humboldt Fog, Truffle Tremor from Cypress Gove, and cabernet-dipped salami, mortadella, turkey salami, or even EOS Chocolates.
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. He’s also 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.