Written by Chris Boyle, firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 28 March 2014 00:00
There’s something to be said for chasing your dreams; that’s just what North Bellmore’s Lynn Mione did four years ago when she gave up the daily corporate grind to open her own business in Massapequa, and she’s been loving life ever since.
Lynn Mione, who recently held a grand opening celebration at her swanky new Vine Wine Cellar wine store located at 4638 Merrick Rd.; she had previously lived in the area for five years, which was an experience she said that she deeply loved and an area that she always intended to return to in some manner.
“Coming back to Massapequa was by design; whether I was going to live here or own a business here, coming back here was on purpose,” she said. “I really loved the town, I loved my neighbors...it’s a great place to live, great place to work, so it made perfect sense to open a business here.”
Mione used to be involved in the fashion industry; she worked as the director for the Levi-Strauss Company’s U.S. retail division, but after three years she decided that it was time for a change.
“It was a pretty good job, but I traveled around the country non-stop for three years and that does wear on you after a while,” she said. “I also had some obligations here on Long Island, so I said that I was going to do something for me...it was always my dream to open my own business, so that’s what I did.”
Changing gears radically, Mione opened the Vine Wine Bar in Merrick in May of 2010; she said the reasoning behind such an establishment, which typically caters to a 30-plus crowd, was that she wanted to create a place where she and her high school friends could just meet and enjoy themselves.
“We have a mini-bar where you can get beer and spirits, but our main focus is on wine, light food that goes well with wine, and keeping a motif that’s very lounge-y, unlike a sports bar,” she said.
The Vine Wine Bar was a success; however, as time went on, her unique approach to owning and operating a wine bar brought a regular series or inquiries from her customers; those inquiries inspired her to expand the scope of her operation in a different direction.
“The Vine Wine Bar specializes in a lot of hard-to-find wines, and customers would keep asking me where to find the wines we served there,” she said “That’s why we really decided to open a wine store...because a lot of the wines we have at the Vine Wine Bar you really can’t get in a regular store.”
And thus, The Vine Wine Cellar was born, first opening the doors to its Merrick Road location on Feb. 1 of 2014; the establishment boasts more than 140 different wines, with Mione noting that there’s something there to satisfy any discerning taste.
“I have wines from all over the world...I don’t specialize in any one region,” she said. “We have wines from Long Island to South Africa. I have 10 different wine experts that I consult with, I use sales data from my wine bar...I know what people are gravitating towards, and I’m able to make those changes here.”
The Vine Wine Cellar recently held a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by the Massapequa Chamber of Commerce and several local dignitaries, all of whom wished Mione great success in her new endeavor; among them was Oyster Bay Town Clerk and former Massapequa Park Mayor James Altadonna.
“We’re here to support small business,” he said. “They are the backbone of any community, any town, so we as public officials want to do our part to support them in their efforts.”
The Vine Wine Cellar offers free tastings every day of the week, and Mione invites anyone interested in broadening their wine palettes to come on down to the Vine Wine Cellar and partake of what she has to offer to the community.
“Because these are wines that you may never heard of before, you’re able to try it before you buy it...you can’t do that when you go into a regular liquor store,” she said. “When you buy a pair of jeans you try them on, look in the mirror, know that we like them, and then take them home. Normally with wines, you can’t do that, but here, you can try it before you buy it and really know something about your decision.”