I was called out on my post last week on The Porch for it not actually being the newest wine bar in Key West. In fact, at the time of posting, it was the newest wine bar, but that was last week.
This week, the newest wine bar is d’Vine, at The Gardens Hotel. The gimmick is the Enomatic machines “First in the Keys” announced the grand opening flyer. But will it live past the gimmick?
The space itself is small probably no more than 20 feet by 10 feet, but there is plenty of room outside and in the lobby to sit. First, you need to purchase a card, with a minimum of $25 on it. I was told by the woman in the photo above that you can then add to the card any amount you choose, since you will most certainly need a refill at some point.
Once you have your card, and a glass, you can choose from any of the 25 or so wines on offer. Simply insert your card, find the wine you would like to try in the case, and select from one of three sizes: a 1 ounce taste, starting at $1.50, a 2.5 ounce half glass, many in the $4.00 – 8.50 range or a 5 ounce glass, mainly in the $6 – 14 range. They also have a Lamarcca Prosecco for $8 per glass. The do-it-yourself aspect works, and it is a much better atmosphere than, say, the Seventh Street Wine Company in Fort Lauderdale, with similar machines but a big attitude.
The selection of wines is interesting, and offers everything from the second wine of Ornellaia to an inexpensive Argentinian Malbec. I am hoping it changes frequently, as it is interesting today, but seeing the same wines for the next three months, not so much. That remains to be seen. I wonder where they keep all of their wine, though, as the racks are sparse and there is plenty of room in the Eurocave. I dream of excess wine storage.
The Gardens Hotel has jazz in the garden Sunday afternoons at 5. A glass of wine will certainly provide a nice complement to this event, and the frozen drinks already available. Overall, the place is nice, but not overly friendly. I did not get the sense that I was in a neighborhood wine bar, rather it does really feel like a hotel. If they are aiming for hotel guests to be the bulk of their clientele, then it should be fine. Otherwise, not so much.
Can Key West can support five wine bars? Only time will tell, but I am optimistic, as we support a zillion (I counted) restaurants.