SATELLITE BEACH, Fla. – Sometime in the late 1990s, Nancy and Tim Campbell fell in love with wine.
“We were just consumers,” Tim Campbell said.
But as a tech guy, he couldn’t stop at just sipping. They read books and magazines and attended wine dinners and tastings.
Two decades later, their flirtation with wine has ripened into a full-on love affair — and a business.
The shop is open 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and is available for tastings and special events.
“This is a retirement project for me,” Tim Campbell said.
Back in the ‘90s, the couple lived in Delaware. Tim owned a consulting company. Nancy was an engineer with the Avon Company.
Tim Campbell traveled a lot for work, so he started visiting wineries.
“The common thread: The people were all nice,” he said. “Everyone in the wineries and tasting rooms, all were just great.”
Eventually, the Campbells traveled to Napa, where they met several winemakers and winery owners.
“I sold my consulting company,” Tim Campbell said. “We quit our jobs and moved to Napa.”
They didn’t have anything lined up, they just knew they wanted to work in the wine industry.
Both got jobs with wineries, and Tim eventually opened a wine brokering business.
“I worked with 150 small wineries that didn’t sell wine outside of California and wanted to sell in other states,” he said. Most produced less than 1,000 cases of wine a year.
Next, he got into importing and started visiting wineries in Italy, France, Spain and Portugal.
In 2010, Tim said they moved back east to help Nancy’s parents.
Eventually, they moved to Jacksonville in search of sunshine, before settling in Satellite Beach four years ago.
Tim Campbell calls Beachside wines a culmination of their 20-plus years of experience with wine.
“These are wines primarily not sold in Brevard anywhere else,” he said.
If you want that expensive, trendy Cab, he can order it for you, but he can also sell you a $16 bottle of red made by the same renowned winemaker for another label.
“A lot of wineries have a second label or sell fruit to their neighbors,” he said.
The resulting wines may not be as well-known, or expensive, but they’re still great. Most of the wines at Beachside are less than $20.
“I purposely have selected wines in a reasonable price range,” he said.
In addition to selling wine, Tim Campbell wants to share some of the knowledge he’s gleaned over the years. Working with a boutique catering company Zanetti Gourmet Provisions, he will host dinners. Some wines are fine for sipping on their own, but many pair better with food, he said.
“If you have these wines and enjoy them without food, you’re just wasting your time,” he said.
There only will be 12 seats at the table for these dinners.
“I want those tickets to be very, very hard to get,” he said.
Though hours are limited, he said he’s available to handle wine emergencies. Surprise company on a Tuesday night? He’ll open for you, and, if you live nearby, even deliver.
Eventually, he has plans to start a wine club.
The wine room also is available for private parties. It’s small, with a capacity of 49, though it feels crowded with more than 30.
Tim Campbell said he has no plans to expand. He likes the intimacy of the place as it is. And remember, this is a retirement job for him. His nametag reads “Tim Campbell, Consumption Expert.”
“If it’s not fun, we’re not going to do it,” he said.
Beachside Wines is at 1301 S. Patrick Drive, Suite 58, Satellite Beach, in the Lori Lane Shopping Center (the building in the back). Hours are 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and for special events. Call 707-337-2977 or visit facebook.com/beachsidewines32937.
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