Gramophone winery ready to be uncorked in Forest Hill

gramophone building

The space is located next to Outpost Richmond and was once home to a dry cleaners. (Mike Platania photo)

After years of preparation, the needle is set to drop on a new winery on the Southside.  

Gramophone, which sells its own brand of wines sourced from vineyards in the U.S. and abroad, is preparing to open at 4827 Forest Hill Ave. in the coming weeks. 

Behind the venture are longtime friends Arthur Grant, Justin Laughter and Chris Mayo, who’ve been working on Gramophone since early 2021.

Laughter is a business attorney at Threshold Counsel with plenty of local creatives as clients, including iconic heavy metal outfit GWAR. Grant has had a career in the wine industry, with a certification from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and has worked at local restaurants like Lemaire and Acacia Midtown. Mayo works in the tech industry. 

The trio once played music together in middle- and high-school bands, and have used music to stay close over the years, Grant said.

They’re combining those musical ties and wine into the new venture, which has taken shape in a storefront once planned for a rage room and owned by Grant’s family. Gramophone was built to include a lounge and has plans to add a small stage, something Grant said would be ideal for hosting singer-songwriters. 

“We were looking at ways to utilize the space and thought a winery would go great here and in the neighborhood,” Grant said. “So we thought why not have a combination – have some live performances and also wine.”

gramophone interior

Gramophone is planning to host live music. (Courtesy Gramophone)

On the product side, Grant said Gramophone is sourcing its wines from vineyards in California, France and Argentina. Gramophone’s wine list includes a malbec, chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon, as well as wine cocktails like sangria, a white wine spritzer and frosé.  

He said they’ve priced the majority of glasses at Gramophone at less than $10 with the idea that it becomes a neighborhood spot. 

“It took a long time to cultivate the small list (of wines) we have. We only want to provide that which we think is a good value,” he said. 

For food, Grant said Gramophone will offer small dishes like olives, charcuterie and cold sandwiches, and that they’re planning to keep a rotation of food trucks at the winery, all in an effort to create a casual atmosphere. 

“There’s so much pretense surrounding wine, unfortunately, that doesn’t need to be there,” he said. “I’m happy to wax poetic with people who want to talk about their trip to Burgundy or Napa…but my focus is bringing wine to the people.”

gramophone building

The space is located next to Outpost Richmond and was once home to a dry cleaners. (Mike Platania photo)

After years of preparation, the needle is set to drop on a new winery on the Southside.  

Gramophone, which sells its own brand of wines sourced from vineyards in the U.S. and abroad, is preparing to open at 4827 Forest Hill Ave. in the coming weeks. 

Behind the venture are longtime friends Arthur Grant, Justin Laughter and Chris Mayo, who’ve been working on Gramophone since early 2021.

Laughter is a business attorney at Threshold Counsel with plenty of local creatives as clients, including iconic heavy metal outfit GWAR. Grant has had a career in the wine industry, with a certification from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and has worked at local restaurants like Lemaire and Acacia Midtown. Mayo works in the tech industry. 

The trio once played music together in middle- and high-school bands, and have used music to stay close over the years, Grant said.

They’re combining those musical ties and wine into the new venture, which has taken shape in a storefront once planned for a rage room and owned by Grant’s family. Gramophone was built to include a lounge and has plans to add a small stage, something Grant said would be ideal for hosting singer-songwriters. 

“We were looking at ways to utilize the space and thought a winery would go great here and in the neighborhood,” Grant said. “So we thought why not have a combination – have some live performances and also wine.”

gramophone interior

Gramophone is planning to host live music. (Courtesy Gramophone)

On the product side, Grant said Gramophone is sourcing its wines from vineyards in California, France and Argentina. Gramophone’s wine list includes a malbec, chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon, as well as wine cocktails like sangria, a white wine spritzer and frosé.  

He said they’ve priced the majority of glasses at Gramophone at less than $10 with the idea that it becomes a neighborhood spot. 

“It took a long time to cultivate the small list (of wines) we have. We only want to provide that which we think is a good value,” he said. 

For food, Grant said Gramophone will offer small dishes like olives, charcuterie and cold sandwiches, and that they’re planning to keep a rotation of food trucks at the winery, all in an effort to create a casual atmosphere. 

“There’s so much pretense surrounding wine, unfortunately, that doesn’t need to be there,” he said. “I’m happy to wax poetic with people who want to talk about their trip to Burgundy or Napa…but my focus is bringing wine to the people.”

Your subscription has expired. Renew now by choosing a subscription below!

For more informaiton, head over to your profile.

Profile


SUBSCRIBE NOW

 — 

 — 

 — 

TERMS OF SERVICE:

ALL MEMBERSHIPS RENEW AUTOMATICALLY. YOU WILL BE CHARGED FOR A 1 YEAR MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL AT THE RATE IN EFFECT AT THAT TIME UNLESS YOU CANCEL YOUR MEMBERSHIP BY LOGGING IN OR BY CONTACTING [email protected].

ALL CHARGES FOR MONTHLY OR ANNUAL MEMBERSHIPS ARE NONREFUNDABLE.

EACH MEMBERSHIP WILL ONLY FUNCTION ON UP TO 3 MACHINES. ACCOUNTS ABUSING THAT LIMIT WILL BE DISCONTINUED.

FOR ASSISTANCE WITH YOUR MEMBERSHIP PLEASE EMAIL [email protected]




Return to Homepage

POSTED IN Restaurants

Editor's Picks

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

9 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
David Humphrey
David Humphrey
11 months ago

If they are getting the wines from other places how does that make this a winery? Is it the grapes they are getting from elsewhere or the wines themselves? Are they aging anything on site?

Augie Kahsar
Augie Kahsar
11 months ago
Reply to  David Humphrey

It seems to me like calling something a “winery” or “brewery” these days is just a work-around so you don’t have to sell food.

Connor Mathew
Connor Mathew
11 months ago

Sounds great. But seems like a rather loose definition of the word winery. Seems more like a wine bar.

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
11 months ago
Reply to  Connor Mathew

Yeah, the old Secco with food trucks in the parking lot.

Julia Battaglini
Julia Battaglini
11 months ago

Hi there. To quote Will Smith…keep my wine bar’s name out of your mouth lol. Secco had 60+wines by the glass and hundreds of bottles from dozens of countries, along with a very talented, award winning kitchen team. We are not the same. We all wish Arthur and friends success with their exciting but very different business model. 🥂

karl hott
karl hott
11 months ago

hot zip code

Hugh Janus
Hugh Janus
11 months ago

Half of all wine drinking is done by people who want to be seen drinking wine

Alan Marr
Alan Marr
11 months ago

I personally am super excited for an option like this in the neighborhood. I had a glass of wine there the other night and will definitely be back again and again. I would recommend everyone else does before passing judgement.
There are a ton of wineries our there that don’t grow grapes. In fact the majority of the wine bottles you see were made by producers that didn’t grow the grapes themselves. I hope they do make some wine in the future, but i’m good just going for the welcoming atmosphere and professional service.

Sophia McCulloch Madgar
Sophia McCulloch Madgar
11 months ago

This place is super cool – great old school, musical vibe in the interior. I tried their wines and must say, very delicious. BUT the most impressive aspect of this new, growing business, is the wine knowledge of the owners. Arthur has been in the food / beverage industry for quit a long time, you can see his passion and expertise in this establishment. Gramophone will be very successful if they keep on this trajectory. Location is perfect. Really enjoy seeing the growth on this side of the River. Go get an IPA from Veil, walk over to Gramophone for… Read more »