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New Craft Beer & Wine Store Opens in Homewood

Last Friday, the Village of Homewood officially welcomed the latest addition to our business community, boutique wine and craft beer store Grape & Grain Co.

While the weather outside was dreary, spirits were high last Friday evening as Homewood Village President Richard Hofeld and several other village officials gathered for the ribbon cutting of Homewood’s new craft beer and wine store: The new shop, located at 18031 Dixie Highway, opened on Labor Day.

Grape & Grain Co. is anything but your average liquor store. And don’t let the bar fool you. This isn’t a place you go to drown your sorrows in pint after pint of domestic suds. As owner Ron Khalaf promised in a Patch article months ago during the planning stages of Grape & Grain “It’s … a classy place.” 

The clean, modern sign on front of the building just north of Ridge on Dixie Highway gives a preview of what customers are to find on the inside. Shelf after shelf is lined with neat bottles of wine and beer. The dimly lit interior offers an intimate setting while patrons browse the impressive selection of anything but the ordinary beverages so many have become accustomed to. Even better, the granite tasting bar inside allows you to sample your beverages before committing to a purchase.

“It makes a huge difference (to sample),” Khalaf said of the bar. “Our customers are loyal because we give them a good product.”

The quality of service was not lost on East Hazel Crest patron Mark Peers. He and his wife, Homewood native Kathy Peers were both impressed with the new Homewood business.

“It’s in the details,” Peers said. “I like it. It’s open, it’s friendly. The bathrooms are clean. You can sit down and have a drink or you can go home and enjoy it. You don’t feel crowded.”

Khalaf, owner of  and former owner of now closed Barley & Hops in Glenwood, said he was confident in opening Grape & Grain Co. in Homewood because there are so many “beer geeks” in town.

“Most of my customers (from my previous brewing store location in Glenwood)—90 percent of them are from Homewood,” Khalaf said.

While he might not refer to himself as a "beer geek," Homewood's Greg James appreciates a fine brew. He says Grape & Grain Co. comes as a “tasteful” and “exciting” addition to the local business community. It also affords him the ability to pursue his passion for brewing far more conveniently than before.

“It’s an opportunity for beer enthusiasts to lean,” James said. “I think it’s a beautiful spot. I think they put some time and energy into the layout. It says, ‘welcome.’”

Grape & Grain Co. is offering free wine and beer tastings every Saturday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Beer and wine making classes will also be offered once to twice per month. Store hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday.

Brian James September 11, 2012 at 09:36 PM
Good luck Ron. I wish the best of luck to you. Is there any chance of you becoming a distributor for Lake Front Brewery? Their White is my favorite and a two minute drive sure would beat a two hour drive to get it.
HBR September 12, 2012 at 04:12 AM
What a great place. Stopped in yesterday afternoon and was greeted by an old friend who turned out to be the GM. So happy for you guys, the best of luck. I'm really excited about this and am looking forward to returning!
Rich1742 September 13, 2012 at 12:37 PM
We stopped at Grape & Grain yesterday and certainly like the decor, atmosphere and beer selections. We are wine enthusiasts and have been anxiously awaiting the opening to sign up for wine making classes. We currently drive to the Beverly neighborhood to make wine and would love to make it in Homewood. We were disappointed when we were told they would only be doing beer making classes, not wine. Seeing my son and son-in-law are beer makers and micro brew enthusiasts, our family will be well represented at Grape & Grain, but we wish they would reconsider the wine making classes. Good luck to a welcome addition to Homewood!!
Ron K October 06, 2012 at 10:05 PM
We have LakeFront. Come on in
Ron K October 06, 2012 at 10:06 PM
Thank you Heather. The pleasure is ours. Let me know when you come in.
Ron K October 06, 2012 at 10:07 PM
We will have wine classes starting in January of 2013. No need to go elsewhere, Rich, we got you covered!!!!!!

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