downtown Miami, street peddlers and nine-to-fivers make way for hip urbanites lighting up the highrises. The latest addition to this new urban oasis is Kork, a wine and cheese bar due to open the first week of August. The 3000 square foot watering hole is more reminiscent of a Medieval tasting tavern than a Miami wine bar. Dark wood, iron chandeliers and heavy leather couches will encourage lingering with flights of wine and cheeses served up by Kork's own "cheesetenders".
Owner Will Edwards decided on Kork once he saw the space. "I was looking for a space suitable for a new jazz club but when I walked in and saw the basement I knew I had to put a wine bar and cellar in." The downstairs retail and tasting cavern, with a special champagne room, will offer close to 5,000 wines for sale.
Edwards is a habitual entrepreneur, and following his success with Transit Lounge he's decided to take part of downtown's revamp "staying true to the areas history and doing something complementary to the neighborhood." Edwards tells us "I am a passionate collector who obsesses about cheese," and we see the twinkle in his eye as we learn about his personal cellar and penchant for discovering obscure cheeses. He concedes that "wine bars have a difficult time in Miami" so with Kork he set out to create something different marrying wine and cheese in a bar and retail setting that screams more California vineyard than Miami vice.
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Kork will sponsor wine tastings and special evenings for neighbors and those looking to expand their learning of the grape. Edwards and his team have also created a guest preference tracking system they'll be able to tell you which wines you love and hate with what cheese.
Kork will soon be followed by Avenue D, the old school jazz club taking up almost an entire city block that led Edwards to his wine cellar discovery. Says Edwards of the still under construction 10,000 sq. ft Avenue D space, "it's a throwback to the 1920's downtown Miami where the bootleg booze flowed freely and Louie Armstrong and Charlie Parker would play for the likes of Al Capone and his cronies -downtown is changing and we are here to make it happen the right way,"
Kork Wine and Cheese Bar
2 South Miami Avenue, Miami