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New Wine Shop: bin 105 offers more than “Just Rotten Grapes”
“Wine shouldn’t be intimidating, they’re just rotten grapes.”
Steve Blazek, owner of the most recent addition to Lincoln’s Haymarket, bin 105, spent close to thirty minutes with DLA introducing his newest venture of servicing Lincoln with a variety of organically produced wines from small, independent distributors. With years of experience to pull from, Blazek wanted to open a shop in the Haymarket for some time.
“I’ve been in the wholesale business for 25 years and had really wanted to open a wine shop in Lincoln for about the last ten years but wanted to make sure Lincoln was ready to support the idea. In the last several years there’s been a whole new younger generation who are really taking an interest in the industry. There are so many restaurants around here where the servers are really embracing wine so I knew I wanted to be downtown close to those guys where I could help service them in return. And when this space opened up in the Haymarket it was a natural fit for me because I wanted something small that I could run by myself, ”said Blazek.
The new store is located at 105 N. 8th Street, Suite 101, formally occupied by Bad Robot. The space is limited but the wine list is diverse spotlighting regional Spanish and Argentinean wines, French and Italian wines, and wines from Australia, New Zealand, and Austria, with a variety of German Rieslings. Domestics from California, Oregon, and Washington are displayed near the counter. bin 105 also houses an assortment of Japanese Sake in a wide array of bottle sizes to choose from.
“I was never a fan of sake. If you go buy a new bottle of wine and you don’t know anything about it you’re probably going to buy the cheapest one you can get which is the worst example of that kind of wine you’re going to get. The guys at Blue Orchid turned me on to all of these designer sakes from Japan that have totally different flavor profiles that range from dry to very sweet. They’re really interesting actually; I hosted a sake dinner at Blue Orchid a few months ago that went over very well. There’s a whole new generation of people who love those wines, and again, they’re totally organic,” commented Blazek.
bin 105 not only offers quality products, they offer a service as well. Blazek’s experience and enthusiasm for the wine industry was evident after only one visit and he is not hesitant to offer advice to those of us who may not know a red from a white. When we asked Steve how he recommends his products to many diverse palettes he replied:
“Well, I start out by asking my customers what they like to eat because that gives me an idea of whether they like spicy foods, etc., and if so, then they might like rich full body as opposed to lighter wines. One of the really interesting things about tasting wines is that they all come from little tiny regions, and the wines from those areas are created to enhance the foods of those regions. So if you go to the south of France where the food is really robust, you’ll find wines that are bigger and fuller flavored, and if you go towards cooler climates where they don’t use as much spice—the wines taste completely different. I have a computer system so I can keep record of everything that you buy so that I can track your likes and dislikes and then we can start taking you on this path towards wines you’ll really enjoy. That’s the real fun of drinking wine; it’s all about the discovery. It doesn’t need to be intimidating at all, they’re just rotten grapes. And that’s my attitude, there’s no right or wrong, you either like it or you don’t…it’s whatever appeals to you as the consumer.”
As soon as bin 105 has their website up there will be wine tasting class schedules posted. The tastings are going to be a little different than most. Guests will get to taste a round of $30 or $40 dollar bottles of Rieslings for only $25 dollars a tasting but then they will also get a $15 dollar coupon to spend in the store. So then it will really only costs you $10 which covers the cost of offering higher quality bottles of wine.
bin 105 carries wine accessories such as corkscrews, glasses, and decanters. In addition, they also offer tetra packs which are biodegradable cartons that hold at least 25% more wine than the average glass bottle. They are safe for the environment, the consumer, and extremely convenient for travel.
bin 105 also has plans to start participating in Lincoln’s First Friday Art Walks which are held every First Friday of the month.
“I have two sons who are both artists so I’m sure they would love to hang some of their work up.”
bin 105 is open for business Tuesday through Saturday from 11am to 7pm or by appointment.
For more information about bin 105 contact Steve Blazek at 402.261.4868 or click here to visit their Bin 105 Facebook