I stopped by Vinea today, and the shelves and coolers were empty save for a small (but relatively interesting) selection of liquors and cordials, a few high-alcohol beers and a dozen or so red wines. Everything was marked down by at least 25 percent, and in some cases 30 percent. The sleek wooden shelves that display the wines are also for sale.
Vinea's owner, Brett Corrieri (who is also the executive chef at Mafiaoza's next door), said keeping Vinea open didn't make business sense, especially given the escalating rents in 12South.
"We're no longer profitable," Corrieri said. "The neighborhood's been really supportive, but the footprint's just too big. The sales couldn't support the rent."
Vinea was actually subletting the space from Mafiaoza's. Corrieri said the owners of that venture probably won't decide until the beginning of next year what to do with the space.
(Corrieri didn't mention this, but one obvious possibility is for Mafiaoza's to use the space to book private events, which would bring in income without incurring the costs associated with a shop, such as paying employees and keeping a full inventory.)
We'll keep you posted.