Shoppers at Columbia’s new
Wegmans Food Markets
won’t have to go far to find that perfect wine for their meal. A new 9,800-square-foot liquor store will open on the second floor of the Wegmans building, the store’s owner says.
Upstairs Wine, Liquor & Beer hopes to cater to shoppers at the new grocery store by offering a “Wegmans-type” shopping experience for customers with a huge variety of wines, beers, and spirits from all over the world, Owner Mike Smith says.
The store’s emphasis, Smith says, will be on wine and craft beers, including some from Maryland.
“This store will definitely not be a typical strip center package store,” Smith says.
For Smith, the location near Wegmans is ideal as he hopes Wegmans' customers will look to his store for liquor to accompany food purchases.
If Smith’s liquor license application receives approval from the Howard County Liquor Board May 1, he plans to open Upstairs Wine, Liquor & Beer within six to eight weeks. Construction is still underway and most of the store’s 20 to 25 employees still need to be hired and trained.
Wegmans will open June 17 off Snowden River Parkway and McGaw Road in Columbia.
A lawyer and 20-year resident of Ellicott City, Smith says he has made his own wines and brewed his own beer for over 20 years.
“You might say that I’m trying to branch out professionally into another area that very much interests me,” Smith says.
The shop also plans to offer tasting and other educational events to inform customers about wine and beer to enhance their meals, Smith says.
Source: Mike Smith, owner of Upstairs Wine, Liquor & Beer
Writer: Alexandra Wilding, Alexandra@bmoremedia.com