Black Dog Wine Co. plans to add Penn Hills store in March
A North Fayette winery expects to open a store in Penn Hills in March.
Mark Rozum of Black Dog Wine Co. will move to a storefront next to Penn Hills Lawn and Garden that formerly housed the Creamy Creations cafe.
Rozum said he and his wife started the business two years ago out of their garage. When they were ready to start selling their wine, they moved into a farm market but quickly ran out of room. The couple is expecting to move the main winery to a building on Steubenville Pike in April.
Rozum believes there is a market for his satellite wine shop in Penn Hills.
“There's nothing like that out that way,” Rozum said. “You have some in Pittsburgh and then more in the south. But there's nothing on the east side market — and it's a huge market.”
He was approached by Deb Holodnik of the garden center — which owns the property that will house Black Dog Wine Co. — at a festival in the fall. Holodnik began offering samples of Rozum's products at the store.
“People have been asking, ‘When is the wine coming?'” Holodnik said.
The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board allows wineries to have up to five satellite stores. This will be Black Dog's first. Rozum has already hired a full-time manager to run the shop and expects to hire up to three part-time employees after it opens.
“It's pretty popular to have a winery at a garden center,” Holodnik said. “People are pretty excited about it.”
The winery lists nine varieties on its website. Rozum said he gets his grapes from farms in Pennsylvania and the Finger Lakes in New York, a region famous for its vineyards.
“We try to keep them as local as possible — that's just my thing,” he said.
He expects to produce more than double the amount of wine made in 2017, which was 8,400 bottles.
As for the name of the business?
“We have a black dog. It's really that original,” Rozum said, adding that he has wines named after his other two dogs.