The Cellar D’Or Wine & Cider Shop Receives Top 50 Wine Retailer Honors from Wine Enthusiast
ITHACA NY JULY 1, 2020 — The Cellar D’Or Wine and Cider Shop at 136 The Commons in Downtown Ithaca recently earned a special honor from Wine Enthusiast, an influential publication for wine lovers.
The magazine names Cellar D’Or among its Top 50 Wine Retailers in the United States, a recognition the shop owners Mark and Olivia Grimaldi are thrilled to celebrate with the community. The special honor will appear in the magazine’s August edition.
“It feels awesome for our little shop here in Ithaca to be noticed in this very large industry,” says Mark.
The focus point of the shop’s recognition from Wine Enthusiast is its multiple popular wine and cider clubs, which the shop has been rolling out one by one since opening seven years ago.
“We got into hard cider extremely early and ‘took it under our wing; per se — educating and stocking a very large selection of ciders from all over the world. We were the first retailer to offer a Hard Cider Club, and it grew from there into adding a few different other clubs — a straight wine club, a club focused on NY Wines with wine writer Lenn Thompson, and now we are also offering a natural wines only club,” notes Mark.
When Mark and Olivia opened the specialty shop in 2013, it was literally with a dollar and a dream. The couple had two very young children, with a third on the way.
“We saved a few bucks to buy a very small amount of inventory and used a lot of our own sweat rehabbing an out-of-date, old storefront, but we had a lot of determination and passion for wine and starting the best possible business we could,” says Mark.
Cellar D’Or is located in the heart of downtown on the Ithaca Commons, a pedestrian shopping district, which was preparing to undergo a long, intrusive construction project just as the Grimaldis opened their storefront.
The specialty shop was able to labor through the Commons construction period because, as Mark puts it, “Ithaca is an amazing place, with an outstanding community of people. We had customers make it a point to shop here and support our new businesses so we would come out alive on the other side. To say we have made life long relationships here would be an understatement. We are literally here because our community supported us not only locally, but from afar as well.”
Darlene M. Wilber, communications manager
Downtown Ithaca Alliance