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Roots Wine Bar At 3107 Leeland St.


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Coming soon signage for Roots Wine Bar is up in the windows at the small commercial building at 3107 Leeland St. This is a block or so southeast of East End Hardware.

 

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This is the former location of Metamorphose Studios, a business that (I believe) was engaged in restoration and sale of antique furniture.

 

Swamplot article about the location from last year indicated that an alcohol permit had been applied for:

 

http://swamplot.com/empty-leeland-furniture-workshop-now-has-a-wine-sign-on-it/2018-09-18/

 

Given the font on the signage, is it safe to assume that this venture is related to Roost on Fairview?

Edited by thedistrict84
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Thanks for the background info @CrockpotandGravel.

 

I didn’t even notice that the new entity name on the construction permit was different than that mentioned in the Swamplot article (with “House” vs. “Bar” being the only difference). But it seems to be the same group as far as you can tell, correct?

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24 minutes ago, ljchou said:

This place is awesome but beware, the retail wines are marked up 300%. I was able to find an 86 dollar bottle on vivino for 29.... A 180 bottle there retails online for 60.

That's pretty common at restaurants and bars.

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51 minutes ago, ljchou said:

300% on top of normal retail markup? It seems aggressive for their "retail" section.

Didn't catch that you were talking about their "retail" section from your post.  Yeah if they are selling there for off-premise drinking and marking up 300% then that "retail" section won't last long. 

I'm more referring to restaurants and bars marking up bottles for on-premise consumption.  My first job ever was at The Original Pasta Company and they used to mark up Berringer 500% from $4 at a grocery store at the time to $20 in store.  Several restaurant/bar upgrades later and my jobs were still averaging 250% - 300% markup.

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I guess more and more people are becoming aware of the disdain that long-term residents of this area have of the name "EaDo" and the gentrification that comes with it. Two references to this bar in particular really hammer home this point: a mention on Culture Map refers to it as an "innovative East End eatery", and an article on Eater claims that it is in "Eastwood." 

Of course, neither are correct. This is technically EaDo proper, at least as the East Downtown Management District defines it. I just find it funny that they go out of their way to avoid using the name, but simultaneously get it completely wrong. 

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36 minutes ago, thedistrict84 said:

I guess more and more people are becoming aware of the disdain that long-term residents of this area have of the name "EaDo" and the gentrification that comes with it. Two references to this bar in particular really hammer home this point: a mention on Culture Map refers to it as an "innovative East End eatery", and an article on Eater claims that it is in "Eastwood." 

Of course, neither are correct. This is technically EaDo proper, at least as the East Downtown Management District defines it. I just find it funny that they go out of their way to avoid using the name, but simultaneously get it completely wrong. 

Even funnier when you see that Eater updated their article about White Rhino to correct "EaDo" to "East End."

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34 minutes ago, BeerNut said:

Before I moved to Houston I always thought this area was the Warehouse District.  

It was referred to as the Warehouse District, and was the location of the original Houston Chinatown. Referring to the area “EaDo” is a recent development in the last ten years, when the Management District was created.

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On 2/26/2021 at 11:10 AM, kbates2 said:

Didn't catch that you were talking about their "retail" section from your post.  Yeah if they are selling there for off-premise drinking and marking up 300% then that "retail" section won't last long. 

I'm more referring to restaurants and bars marking up bottles for on-premise consumption.  My first job ever was at The Original Pasta Company and they used to mark up Berringer 500% from $4 at a grocery store at the time to $20 in store.  Several restaurant/bar upgrades later and my jobs were still averaging 250% - 300% markup.

markup on anything, wine, alcohol, beer, component cost needs to be at least 20% of sale cost if you want to stay in business and make any profit at all. 

wine is typically pretty easy, 1 bottle yields roughly 5 glasses. so whatever you pay for the bottle, you sell the glass at that price. 

so yeah, if OPC was buying a bottle of Berringer for $4, and selling a glass for $4, that's pretty right.

retail is a whole 'nother game and I can't sell a bottle of Berringer for you to take home at a price of $20, that would be insane.

On 3/1/2021 at 6:25 PM, JBTX said:

Even funnier when you see that Eater updated their article about White Rhino to correct "EaDo" to "East End."

that very well could be the EaDo management district protecting their name.

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1 hour ago, samagon said:

markup on anything, wine, alcohol, beer, component cost needs to be at least 20% of sale cost if you want to stay in business and make any profit at all. 

wine is typically pretty easy, 1 bottle yields roughly 5 glasses. so whatever you pay for the bottle, you sell the glass at that price. 

so yeah, if OPC was buying a bottle of Berringer for $4, and selling a glass for $4, that's pretty right.

retail is a whole 'nother game and I can't sell a bottle of Berringer for you to take home at a price of $20, that would be insane.

that very well could be the EaDo management district protecting their name.

Yep, that is almost exactly how I see pricing most of the time.  In the Berringer case, we sold glasses for about $4 and bottles (to consume on premises) for $20, thus giving the bottle deal of one glass free.  As you move up the spectrum on pricing, wine is less often sold by the glass and the % markup usually decreases.  You still end up with a hefty dollar markup but just lower percentages.

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the gimmick of self serve wine is cool, and the look of the place really is nice.

if you go don't sit on the patio on the side of the building. we had to sit here and it stunk. literally. I hope the smell was just fertilizer on their new plants, but the smell of poop was a bit overpowering. there were 3 manhole covers directly under one of the tables, which I am afraid may actually be the point of origin for the smell, meaning it isn't going to go away any time soon.

the self service wine could be done better. instead of feeling like a fun experience, it felt like a pressured and annoying gimmick. they don't give you a menu of the wines they have available, so each person has to spend an uncomfortable amount of time watching someone in front of them read the cards for each wine while they are at the dispensing station. then when you are at the dispensing station, you try to read as fast as you can and make a decision because you feel the eyes on your back as you try to pick. I imagine they will make this better at some point, but what should have been a fun experience was actually not fun at all. simple solution is they need to print a wine list for each table so you can pick before you go up to the wine dispensers.

prices per glass seemed ok for going to an establishment to get a glass of wine, but with self service, you'd expect the price to be lower than having a person taking your order and delivering the glasses to you, then if you wanted to get a bottle for the table, instead of the bottle price being roughly 5x the price of a glass, it was about 10x, that's a pretty clear message from management that they don't want you interacting with a person to buy a bottle you like, but keep going back for more wine by the glass.  

it's a fun gimmick, and the atmosphere (minus the poopy smells) is great, but I think I'd rather go to a wine bar that is going to have a wine list for me to look at without feeling pressure, and for the same price will have someone who is trained to tell me at least a little bit more about the glass of wine I'm thinking of getting, rather than a flash card with some notes on it.

overall I wasn't impressed, but they've been open for 3 weeks, maybe I'll go back in 6 months and see how they've adapted their model to reality.

Edited by samagon
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48 minutes ago, samagon said:

overall I wasn't impressed, but they've been open for 3 weeks, maybe I'll go back in 6 months and see how they've adapted their model to reality.

Thanks for the review! Will keep it in mind.

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5 hours ago, samagon said:

yeah, when I was there they certainly had their Spotify seeded with early 90s rap, which definitely got the nostalgia train running.

Must be something about that block because I've heard A Tribe Called Quest each of the last two times I went to East End Hardware.

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  • Highrise Tower changed the title to Roots Wine Bar At 3107 Leeland St.

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