Wedge and Bottle: Wine, Cheese and More
A great idea doesn’t have to be new. When accessibility and adaptability meet, something old can be something fresh. For the owners of one Ahwatukee business, providing accessibility to an existing concept has become a venture that is being well received by those in the area and perhaps beyond.
“Since we married, we talked about doing a business together, eventually,” said Krista Daily, recalling how she and husband Troy went from their respective professions, she an interior designer and he involved in the hospitality industry, striking out on their own by opening Wedge and Bottle, a wine and cheese specialty store last May.
They soon realized the importance of learning and doing it quickly. As they navigated the various details of running their own concern, they were frequently asked if this was their first venture. Thankfully, others operating similar operations, inside the Valley and outside, were willing to assist. Being in a location where such support is easily found, this no doubt made the learning curve less steep.
In selecting a location, Ahwatukee had several advantages. “We are here more often than home,” jokingly said Krista Daily. Having a short commute was one plus. Another was the proximity of complimentary establishments. In the same mall that houses Trader Joe’s and Pomegranate Café, the positives of being here made sense.
The concept of a cheese and wine shop, where you can consume wine and nosh cheese and other items onsite, is an old one. But that doesn’t mean it is without merit. As wide and varied as eating establishments are, when you consider locating one that offers these things in a pleasant environment, the options narrow to just a few choices.
Certainly you can pick up cheese at your local super market, but try to find obscure cheeses, wines, meats and the like, and then add the “quality” element, and one would be surprised just how rare such places are that offer an experience provided by Wedge and Bottle.
“We try to carry local when we can,” said Krista. It becomes apparent when you look at the offerings. Making trips to a local farmer’s market, and making sure that the animals used in the creation of products are treated humanely, there is a real attention to detail that makes shopping here more than purchasing items; it makes it an experience.
An intimate space, Wedge and Bottle occupies a narrow slice inside the mall that houses it. That doesn’t mean it’s cramped. No doubt having a design background, the couple has molded a difficult space into a surprisingly roomy, comfortable place to be. Instead of piling items on top of other items, there is a clean, but not sterile, look that makes everything there gain the advantages of being in an upscale environment, but minus the cold haughtiness of being in a pretentious one. This is genuinely an ideal location to people watch and sip a glass of wine while sampling a new cheese.
As to prices, a three-cheese platter for $12, and a charcuterie platter that features sopressata salami and speck americano ham, there are some great choices here that simply are not available at other venues. For those seeking custom plates, or serving large parties, those options are available.
In addition to providing a place to dine and a wide selection of meats and cheeses, the wine list includes local wines, and nearly everything to compliment a meat and cheese dining experience. They also offer a wide assortment of beers as well as cooking implements.
For those unfamiliar with the territory of wine and cheese, and even for those with developed tastes, Wedge and Bottle offers wine tastings and classes. Scheduled for February 11th, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., they will host an introduction to French wine with a Bordeaux blending class. Guests will be given the opportunity to mix their own blend of wine. Cost is $45 per person, making it an excellent way to absorb new information and learn hands on this process.
Joanna Eland, of Quench Wines (www.quenchaz.com), will be conducting a wine tasting February 15th from 5 to 7 p.m. The cost of admission is $5 to taste four different wines and will be applied to the purchase of a bottle of wine.
While this is an old idea, the Daily’s vision is one that provides a relaxed atmosphere, workshops, presentations and the like that augment the experiencing of exploring assorted flavors of wine and cheese. As Krista observed that the Valley is full of “tucked away places that no one knows about.” However, with the great response from patrons, and the need for places like Wedge and Bottle, it is doubtful that this very special place will be unknown by a wider audience for long.
4025 East Chandler Blvd, Suite 44
Phoenix, AZ 85048
Hours: Closed Monday
Sunday 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Saturday and Friday
11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Tuesday through Thursday
11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.