Cooper's Hawk?

Never heard of them before. They opened up a location here in IL not too far away. Guess they truck in grapes. Only wine they sell is their own. Anyway it’s a restaurant/winery?/tasting room. Locations in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Missouri, Ohio, Wisconsin and Virginia. The parking lot is packed every day for lunch and dinner.

Do they have birds on their corks?

Very successful restaurant and winery. Not my style in terms of wine but hat tip to understanding their market and taking advantage of it. They are making money hand over fist.

Looks like just a feather:

(but if I’m wrong we’ll have to let Gila know)

The St Charles location is packed all the time. And not exactly a prime location.

I’m a wine club member there. Two bottles of a specialty wine each month (a brand new wine each month for wine club members), and two tastings each month. My wife and I look forward to going each month, since we’re in south Florida and don’t have access to other wineries.

The wines are simple, but nice weeknight wines. They’re non-vintage wines. Not bad at all. Obviously not high end wines, but that shouldn’t be expected.

I am in the one bottle a month club (about $19). The food is very tasty. Never had a bad meal there. The upside is that, unless you pick up your monthly purchase, they keep it there. When you dine in, you tell them to give you a bottle of whatever you want and you pay no corkage. Very smart marketing idea… I usually have an unspecified inventory of 6 - 8 bottles. If you’d prefer, you can pick up that month’s bottle or you take whatever you want from their list and you are not locked in to the wine for the month. The wines are every day drinkers. Nothing expensive or complex.

Be careful, there is now a corkage fee. Started last year. Used to be no corkage, then no corkage if you bring a bottle from tasting room, now there’s a corkage fee no matter what. Ridiculous changes.

I’ve never looked too closely at their operation, but I know they took a kiss of death/restaurant jinx location in KC and are making it work.

I believe they are the first successful example of a winery that is mimicking what breweries have been doing for quite some time.

I know someone from here who is just hired as a Vineyard relations manager and she knows what she’s doing. So my guess is that they are sourcing from lots of places and I do making it locally and having it shipped to a centralized location or something like that.

Smart idea?

I was just there for New Year’s Eve, along with two other couples who are members. None of us were charged a corkage fee. Perhaps the one you go to has started such a practice.

You got lucky. It’s been confirmed that there’s a fee at all locations. I believe it’s $8.00.

It was actually pretty dumb. When the corkage fee started last year, the fee did not apply if you bought the bottle in the tasting room, but did apply if you bought it at your table. So, people were literally getting up from their table and going to the tasting room to get a bottle and sitting back down.

Then it changed to $8.00, no matter what, whether you bought a bottle at the table, in the tasting room, or brought your own.

It may actually have just changed again recently, to the fee being waived if purchased at the table, due to tons of complain about the above issues.

Note that the founder, when the place started, Gabe an interview where he said one differentiator for the place was no upcharhr for the wine anywhere at the venue. Seems that was tinkered with a lot last year.

I just checked the nationwide menu from the website. $8 fee when not purchased in dining room. However, the bottle price is an extra $8 across the board from what you pay in the tasting room. So, it’s misleading. They hide the corkage fee in the price.

You’re beating a dead horse here. Get over it. The point is that you can drink a bottle of wine during dinner that you have already paid for.

I don’t know where they make their wines, but in talking with one of their wine people, I learned that they blend each wine to be specifically food friendly with their menu items. That is a smart idea.

Relax. I was trying to help by making you aware of their practice, as many people at my location have unwittingly paid the corkage or upcharge, despite being led to believe there wasn’t one.

Not sure what your issue with accurate information being put out there to help others is (for those it may matter to).

They make them in Woodridge, Illinois. They buy grapes from a variety of locations and have them shipped there.

I go for the food. The one near me allows you to bring your own wine. Not sure what the corkage fee is though

What are people’s favorite wines from there? My wife and like the barbera and Petite Sirah quite a bit. For their wines of the month, we really liked the vinho verde (it was our first time having one—great summer wine) and Lineage (a cab franc).