Innovative wine tasting venue to open at Bristol’s Finzels Reach

Posted on September 20, 2019

Bristol’s Finzels Reach, with its rapidly growing social scene, is to welcome Le Vignoble wine lounge and shop as its latest exciting opening.

French for ‘the vineyard,’ Le Vignoble will be offering up to 64 wines in what it describes as ‘wine heaven’ in the atmospheric surroundings of the restored heritage brewery.

The changing monthly selection of wines will be available from innovative self-service Enomatic dispensers that keep the wine at the perfect temperature.  Le Vignoble enables customers to sample wines from all over the world in a relaxing and sophisticated bistro-style ambience.

Le Vignoble is the newest addition to Finzels Reach which has seen Left-Handed Giant and Mission Pizza open with great success this summer, joining established independents Spicer+Cole and Café Matariki. Bocabar’s brand new third venue, with a plaza-style outdoor terrace opening onto Hawkins Lane at the heart of Finzels Reach, is also set to open this autumn.

Le Vignoble founder Yannick Loué is on a mission to take the snobbery out of the wine tasting tradition and help everyone to sample new wines and flavours.  Every wine comes with tasting notes and all staff are highly trained experts able to guide novices towards new grapes, regions and varieties.

Wine is sold in tasting 25cl glasses, medium or large glass and customers can either pre-pay for their wines on a free membership card or pay at the end of their evening.  Members can also preview new wines and have priority booking for the many events that Le Vignoble hosts including pop up guest restaurants and meet the winemaker evenings.

An authentic French tapas-style food has been created to perfectly compliment the wine.  The menu includes meat and cheese platters, much of it imported direct from Paris, alongside several traditional hot dishes.  There are also craft beers and ciders all sourced from the South West.

Le Vignoble will be based on the ground floor of the historic Fermentation Buildings which have been home to several famous breweries over the years, most recently Courage Brewery before it closed in the 1990s. The interior will be decorated in keeping with the stunning industrial location with reclaimed wood tables, vintage lighting and aged leather Chesterfield sofas creating a relaxed and informal environment to enjoy the wine and food.

The Le Vignoble concept is likely to be a big hit with the growing number of people living and working at Finzels Reach, which will soon be home to Channel 4’s Creative Hub, as well as those coming from across the city to relax in this new eating and drinking destination by the harbour.

Cornwall-based French founder and wine connoisseur Yannick Loué came up with the idea for Le Vignoble ten years ago.  He was struck by how many people stuck to well-known wine brands because they did not have the opportunity to find out more.  He wanted to create a place where people could help themselves to new wines without feeling intimidated by a waiter or ‘maitred d’.  He opened the first bar in Royal William Yard, Plymouth seven years ago and last year opened a second outlet in Milsom Place, Bath.

Yannick Loué says: “There is so much snobbery in the wine world, I really wanted to democratize the wine tasting process and make it accessible to everyone.  Our self-serve dispensers enable people to try a small glass without having to buy a whole bottle so it is a great way to explore and discover new wines.”

At 2,500sqft and 100 covers, this will be by far the largest of the three sites and Yannick is excited about bringing the concept to Bristol and especially to Finzels Reach.

“From the moment I walked around the site I knew it was perfect for us.” Yannick explains.  “We like to find buildings and areas that speak of history and this building is full of stories.  The historic architecture gives the area a unique character. I love the patina of the bricks and the large windows – it all creates a stylish but informal atmosphere.”

Created by developer Cubex with funding from Palmer Capital, Finzels Reach will have around 2,500 people living and working there by the end of the year. The new Hawkins Lane walkway that runs through the heart of Finzels Reach, connects Castle Park and the city centre via the striking Castle Bridge and provides an attractive traffic-free new route into the city from Temple Meads.

Cubex has plans to continue the regeneration of Finzels Reach at the former headquarters site of Avon & Somerset Fire and Rescue located on the other side of Counterslip, opposite the existing site. Subject to planning, the site will be transformed into 297 new homes, including over 20% affordable housing, together with high quality offices for up to 1,100 people, supporting Bristol’s acute need for housing and its growing economy. Significant investment in improvements around the site, including new landscaping, pedestrian and cycle routes, will help create a more attractive area and foster a strong sense of community.

Gavin Bridge, executive director at Cubex, the developer behind Finzels Reach, said: “Le Vignoble brings something completely new to the city’s eating and drinking scene and we are thrilled they are opening at Finzels Reach adding to our eclectic mix of independent businesses.  With such an array of different eating and drinking options Finzels Reach is becoming a social hub for the local community and the city.”

For information about the leisure space available alongside Hawkins Lane, which runs through the heart of Finzels Reach, contact Insight Retail on 0117 930 4536.