New Year's plans, visiting restaurants and wine stores that I have long wanted to visit, but just hadn't gone to yet. Last week, while spending a few days in the Mansfield area, I was able to visit The Reserve Bin, a boutique wine, beer, and cigar shop located in Foxboro.
I had previously been chatting with the owner, Kristin Braga, on Twitter, and looked forward to finally meeting her in person and checking out her store. She is an engaging personality on Twitter so I had high expectations for her wine store. It turned out to be a very pleasant experience, and I happily recommend that all wine lovers visit The Reserve Bin.
This has not been easy, and it has been most difficult trying to expose the local market to more diverse wines, not the usual mass produced, highly commercial wines. That has been her biggest obstacle, trying to show people the value of more boutique wines. This is accomplished through a lack of pretension, helping to make these wines accessible to the general consumer. Their weekly wine tastings, usually held on Thursday nights, have helped to introduce people to different wines, and many young wine drinkers have flocked to these events. Plus, Kristin's exuberent personality is another selling point.
Above, they carry some of their more eclectic offerings, including several sakes, sherry, madeira and boxed wines. Kristin has made some very good choices, including some of my favorites such as the Bunraku Yamahai Junmai Sake, Lustau sherries, and the Y+B Organic wines in Tetra-Paks. Plus, they even sell some glassware.
Wine prices are average, and there is no price inflation just because this is more of a boutique winery. In addition, if you purchase 6 wines you get a 10% discount, and if you purchase a case, 12 wines, you get a 15% discount. Many wine stores don't offer a discount for any purchases under a case, so this is a benefit of shopping at the The Reserve Bin.
Top Ten Wines of 2009 Under $15 was the 2007 Cerejeiras Regional Tinto, a superb value wine so I was very pleased to see that The Reserve Bin carries this wine, for $10, though obviously a newer vintage, the 2009.
local wines and beers, carrying one of the largest selections I have seen. You'll find wines from Travessia Winery, Turtle Creek, Truro Vineyards, Still Rivers, Westport Rivers and many more. Out of all their local wines, those from Travessia Winery sell the best, which is partially due to Kristin's advocacy of their wines but also because the wines taste good, and make people want to return to buy them again and again. I too am a fan of Travessia Wines and can understand why they sell so well.
90+ Cellars, which I have reviewed multiple times before. They are a Massachusetts based company which buys excess wine from carefully selected wineries, rebottling it and then reselling it at a significant discount to the consumer. They have some excellent wines, and they truly are values. If you had to purchase the original wine, you often would have paid at least twice as much.
In about a year, the store will be moving into an expanded spot just across the parking lot from where they are currently located. That will enable the store to carry a larger inventory, and there are potential plans to add a special room for wine classes and seminars.
As I have said repeatedly before, it is people that make the difference in restaurants, wine stores, and other food & wine related place. Those people with a passion for what they do are those who are most likely to excel, and be the type of people who run places I enjoy. Kristin certainly qualifies in that regard, and her bubbly personality is contagious. Her boutique wine store has much to offer wine lovers, yet remains open, unpretentious and accomodating to the average consumer as well. The Reserve Bin gets my recommendation and I hope you stop by and check it out.