For 13 years the Marietta Wine Cellars, 211 Second St., has been selling locally made, sometimes sweet and sometimes not so sweet, wine.
The shop opened in 2000, but didn't start selling wine until the following year. Kari Rings, daughter of owners Al and Mary Jane Phillips, said the business started with few varieties.
"We started out with four wines and just four tanks," she said. "We've moved quite a ways and gotten bigger than that."
In fact, the wine cellar currently has around 30 varieties of wine, including reds, blushes and whites. Some of those are sweet, while others are dry. Rings said the most popular wines are those that are sweeter, but that one of the newest additions is a dry blush.
"We try to give everyone the perfect wine for their palate," she said. "Hopefully they'll find one they like."
Owner Mary Jane Phillips said the winery started as a hobby.
AMANDA NICHOLSON The Marietta Times
Mary Jane Phillips, owner of the Marietta Wine Cellars, shows off two newer types of wine, the Almary, left, and Triple Truffle, right.
"My husband (Al) did it as a hobby," she said. "We visited a lot of wine makers. They were kind and encouraged him...We love working together with it."
As summer fast approaches, Rings said there is a type of wine that's more popular than the others: a sweet white.
"Everybody wants a light, crisp wine in summertime," she said. "A light and cold wine, just like guys with their beer; they want an ice cold beer on a hot day."
About the Marietta Wine Cellars
Opened in 2000.
Started selling wine in 2001.
Was located on Front Street until a fire in 2010, and the shop changed locations to 211 Second St.
Wine varieties started with four, including River Red, which is still popular.
Currently there are about 30 varieties of wine, including reds, whites and blushes, some of which are dry and others sweet.
Special edition wines are made up for holidays and other occasions.
Sandwiches and wraps are served for lunch through the week, and entertainment can be heard on Friday nights.
Despite that, Rings said the most popular wine overall is the River Red.
"It's a little heavy, sweet Concord grape," she said. "It's been out the entire time and is very much well-known."
Rings said every once in a while, a special wine will make an appearance.
"Last year for the Riverfront Roar, we did a special wine for that," she said.
Though the wine won't make an appearance this year, the special Christmas wines, Sugar Plum and White Christmas, will, but quantities will be limited.
Rings said that variety in the shop is key for customers.
"If you get tired of one, there's another one to move onto," she said. "If we run out of one, there's another to choose."
About 23 cases of wine can come out of a 50 gallon tank, and Rings said a new wine will soon make an appearance.
"We're getting ready to come out with a new one," she said. "It'll be a fun one."
Though the shop's focus is wine, recently the lounge environment and live entertainment has been a hit.
"People just want to let loose...and forget the woes of the week and have a good time," Rings said. "That worked out for us; have wine and have a good time."
She said the food that's served is a favorite among many who come into the shop, as is the entertainment, but that's not their first love.
"That's just not our niche," Rings said. "Our No. 1 thing is our wine. That's what we love to do and focus on."
Phillips said the winery wasn't supposed to be as big as it is.
"You never know what it's going to turn into," she said. "Once it pulls you in, it's hard to get back out."
In fact, everyone in the family is involved.
"My grandson started when he was 2 or 3 with grandpa," Phillips said. "He's 17 now and knows how to make wine. It's all a family affair type thing."
Coming up with a new wine is the best part, said Phillips.
"It's an adventure to see what you can do and what you can name it," she said. "We always try to have a fancy name with it."
Rings said the benefit of a local winery is huge.
"You get to taste it before you go and you know what you're going to get before you go home," she said. "We only make what we like; it's family run and we're behind our name. If we don't think it's high quality, we're not going to put it out...We're a family sitting back here, making something we enjoy. We want to put out the best of the best. That's what I think makes us different."
Rings said the future for the shop is filled with many more barrels of grapes.
"Hopefully (we'll) make even better and more wine," she said. "We want to keep it going and to keep it something we'll always love and enjoy with our family."