Neighborhood Vintner is Westlake’s Quintessential New Wine Shop
With floor-to-ceiling shelves, warm brass details and marble countertops, designer Kasey McCarty creates a stylish space for sipping
By Darcie Duttweiler
Photos by Jane Yun
“I love drinking wine with a sense of place,” says advanced Sommelier Paul Ozbirn while perched on a lush, emerald green velvet barstool seated next to a pristine white marble countertop. “I was so enamored with wanting to travel that I felt like learning about wine was kind of a way to travel without just picking up and going to Austria. I could drink a glass of Grüner Veltliner and feel like I was traveling the world.”
Walking into Westlake wine retail shop and wine bar Neighborhood Vintner might feel a little bit daunting for the vino neophyte. But for the oenophile (or those a little more advanced on their grape journeys), it’s like entering into the Beast’s library in “Beauty and the Beast,” with floor-to-ceiling white shelves stuffed to the gills with bottles daring to be discovered and library ladders waiting to be swung from.
However, even those a little intimidated by purchasing wine will feel at ease with the friendly faces and easygoing services provided by Neighborhood Vintner’s staff, including General Manager Ozbirn, who will gently steer guests slightly out of their comfort zones with zero judgment.
“I enjoy the ability to play matchmaker — I ask them questions and listen, and then I try to match them with things that are going to make them happy while also gently pushing them into trying something new. But ultimately we want our guests to leave happy and come back again and again,” Ozbirn explains.
Owned by Leo and Tiffany Resig, Neighborhood Vintner opened this spring. And while its original concept was to be a tasting room to showcase the Resign Wine label, which the Resigs started in 2015 after Tiffany quit her job in broadcast advertising, the gorgeous 1,350-square-foot space has become an elevated wine destination for those looking to purchase a bottle or two or claim a spot at the bar to enjoy vino with friends over caviar or cheese plates. The warm brass details and custom live-edge walnut wine bar are complemented by the gorgeous marble countertops sourced by interior designer Kasey McCarty and those beautiful green chairs. But when it came to the ethos and feel of the space, Tiffany admits it was all Leo and his eye for style.
“I joke that he’s like a gay heterosexual designer,” Tiffany remarks. “He’s just got this beautiful eye, and he’s designed a lot of things. He’s built out a few offices in Austin, and he loves design and buildings.”
The Resigs’ love of wine came from their time living in California, where they’d explore the different wine regions up and down the coast. What started as a hobby turned into a venture after Leo gifted Tiffany an exam course for the Court of Sommeliers. Once she quit her job and the duo started Resign Wines (get it?) from Sonoma, California, they put down their roots in Westlake. Because of the California fires and the pandemic, the Resigs pulled their wine from their distributor and decided to sell it themselves. Neighborhood Vintner was born out of the idea that they wanted a place to showcase their wine label, but Tiffany quickly realized it could become something much bigger.
“There are no bars in Westlake!” she laughs. “I was tired of going downtown to get a good bottle or glass of wine.”
Once the Resigs got Ozbirn on board, with his background at Shawn Cirkel’s restaurants, like Parkside and Olive & June, they began building out their retail space. The 1,000 bottles of wine are organized much like most collectors would stock their wine fridge or cellar – from lightest to heaviest instead of based on region. Ozbirn says this allows them to discuss different varietals without feeling too married to a particular wine region.
In addition to the retail space, there are roughly 20 wines by the glass to sample on site, including the Resign Wine label, and every bottle in the store can be purchased and consumed on the premises without a corkage fee or insane markup. Prices range, mercifully, from $14 to high-end collectible bottles that are stored temperature controlled.
“It’s not only an elevated wine shopping experience, but we also offer some amazing retail pricing by the bottle. It’s a warm and inviting place where you can travel the world of wine in a glass,” Tiffany explains.