Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Christy Frank is on I'll Drink to That!
Christy Frank, the personable owner of Frankly Wines, talks retail on a recent I'll Drink to That! In the sustained era of big wine business and volume discounts, Christy runs a neighborhood store based around a personal model. This is somebody who, as you can hear in the interview, has a commitment to helping her neighbors find the wines they are looking for and also a commitment to helping them find their own palate.
A lot of times one hears about the adventurous sommelier working with the small list of interesting wines, but for whatever reason the small footprint retailer selling beloved wines out of a tiny storefront doesn't get the same attention or fanfare. The general thinking seems to be that retailers work on large volume discounts, play to what consumers already want, and don't make an effort to develop customer taste. But Frankly Wines isn't like that. This is a store with Chateau Musar on the shelf. This is a place in it with the hippest of sommeliers for a bit more of a favorite wine. And this is a shop where you can find Rauchbier distillate. It is pretty apparent to me that Christy is working just as hard as any sommelier would to introduce her customers to what she loves and to make small scale viable.
Christy's interview is available both on iTunes and on Stitcher.
And you can follow Christy on twitter like I do, @franklywines or see the latest recommendations on the store's entertaining blog.
Don't think that small footprint "personal retailing" exists anymore in the wine business? Go take a look at Christy's store and have your mind changed. And if you want to know the story behind the store, take a listen to the interview and hear what Christy has to say.