The owner of Durham's Wine Authorities store will open a Raleigh store this fall near the Oakwood and Mordecai neighborhoods.
Wine authorities owner Craig Heffley said he signed a lease last week for a space at the Person Street Plaza, a new development at 211 E. Franklin St. That area is experiencing a renaissance with Market Restaurant relocating there, the expected opening of Yellow Dog Bread Co. and Hibernian owner Niall Hanley opening a brassiere and pub nearby.
"I like what is happening in Raleigh right now," Heffley said mentioning residents' support of independent businesses and chef Ashley Christensen's expansion of her restaurant empire. "I'm looking forward to being part of it."
Heffley opened the original store in Durham more than 5 years ago with former business partner, Seth Gross. Gross and Heffley parted ways in 2010 when Gross went on to open Bull City Burger and Brewery in downtown Durham.
Heffley's store was once described in The New York Times as “a Durham shop devoted to removing intimidation from the wine business.” Most of the wines are aimed toward regular connoisseurs who don't want to spend a fortune on a bottle; all are under $50 a bottle and most are priced around $15.
The new Raleigh location will have a larger lounge and bar area for wine tastings, as well as an Enomatic machine, which dispenses wine samples with the swipe of a preloaded card. Heffley, who is known for remembering his customers' preferences, plans to be in the Raleigh store from the opening through the holidays and then split his time between the two stores.