It was on the sands of a Sanibel Island beach off the Florida coast that Pat Tom and his wife first conceived the idea for what would eventually become Towne Lake's premiere wine shop. Always an avid birdwatcher and nature lover, Tom observed the kingfishers and knew immediately that would be name of his newest venture.
Tom, who came from Columbus to open Kingfisher Wine Shop in 2007, loves to welcome Woodstock residents to educate them and share his knowledge about wines from all over the world.
"We love wine," Tom proclaims on his website. "Our business is organized around the philosophy that wine is better enjoyed if it is understood. We educate our customers in the art of wine and wine-tasting for this simple reason."
Every Saturday night, Tom invites local connoisseurs as well as curious novices to come in for themed tastings with wine representatives and the occasional vineyard owner.
"We offer new wines every week," said Tom of these gatherings. "It's a great time for customers to pre-order what they like the most and for us to know what is popular."
These weekly get-togethers are also opportunities for Tom to do what he loves best: to gather with his cadre of loyal customers who love to take part in an ongoing wine-dialog.
"I love to entertain here," Tom said. "People have become like a family, and if one of my regulars misses a tasting, they always come in and ask, 'What did I miss?'"
Tom also encourages the public to keep Kingfisher in mind for their company gatherings and fundraisers. Tom offers to provide 50 percent of the cost for these organized parties, and people are welcome to bring their own food to accompany his vast selection of wines.
At a price range between $5-$90, there is certainly a wine to suit every customer's taste and budget, and Kingfisher is happy to offer full-case, half-case, and senior citizen discounts. But what strikes the customers most about the shop, perhaps, is Tom's attention to detail in hand-selecting every wine that comes through his doors and his ability to personally recommend them to his patrons.
"When you walk into our shop, you will find the best collection of wines available from all over the world," Tom commented. "Enjoy the flavors. Inhale the aromas. And see for yourself why Kingfisher Wineshop means wine."