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Meet Michael Consbruck of V Wine Room in West Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Michael Consbruck.

Michael – we’d love to hear the V story from you?
V first opened its doors on February 9, 2013. The concept for V was to be a true tasting room and vinoteca- such as those found in California wine country, New York City and European wine bars; and therefore, unlike any other space in West Hollywood or the LA area. Our mission is to bring boutique California wines and craft beer to Los Angeles, to provide wine flights and a wine education in a relaxed atmosphere for people to enjoy with colleagues, friends and family.

V is housed in a historic building, which served as a library to the unincorporated area of Los Angeles County, known as Sherman, from 1929-1941. Before this, Charlie Chaplin originated the space as an actor’s studio. Since, the building has been used for a variety of retail activities after the 1940’s until becoming vacant in the late 2000s.

I wanted to revive the history of the building when designing the space, which is why you see bookshelves housing wine, books, dark library inspired furniture, a marble bar and vanities much like a 30’s checkout desk in a New York public library, vintage styled lighting and book wallpaper throughout. A quick glance through the room will reveal a refurbished card catalogue which houses guest’s library cards as well as our very own Dewey Decimal System of wine.

V is proud to represent very small producers from California. There are over 800 wineries in California, many of which produce 2,500 cases of wine or less for the entire year. Some of these small producers don’t even have a tasting room and rely on their wine club almost exclusively for sales. V acts as an extension of these wineries for our guests to taste, learn and experience some of California’s best wines. In addition to the wines, V has put together a collection of California craft beer, locally sourced charcuterie, cheese and chocolates to accompany the outstanding wines.

I’m a transplant from Nebraska to West Hollywood. I grew up on a production agriculture farm in Junita, Nebraska where I worked and studied at the University of Nebraska for my Bachelor of Science degree in plant science and later earned a Master of Arts degree in journalism and another Master of Arts degree in marketing.

I moved to Los Angeles in 2001 to pursue a career in writing. My first position was with a post-secondary trade school where I was the Content Manager and Chief Writer for all educational materials. After publishing three textbooks and serving as the adjunct instructor for California License for six years, I decided to return to school and earned a post-graduate degree in Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning from UCLA. I began my foray into the landscape architectural field during my time at UCLA by working for Rob Steiner, Inc. After three successful years with Rob Steiner, Inc. I created and launched my own firm, MCLA, which I currently own and operate in West Hollywood.

In between landscape architectural projects, and due in part to my respect for California viniculture and its relation to my background in agronomy, I began to get involved in the wine industry representing boutique winemakers from central and northern California in Los Angeles. Through this process, and in working closely with the winemakers, I began to learn enology, and am becoming a certified sommelier. Based on this experience, my vast knowledge of agronomy, and a passion and respect for California wines, I have been diligently creating V, a wine tasting room in West Hollywood. I want to pass along my experience, knowledge, and passion, as well as create an opportunity for the community to learn about, and experience unique, California grown wines.

I have been an active resident in West Hollywood for nine years. I volunteer for the Trevor Project and once a year conduct a clothing drive for the Gay and Lesbian Youth Center. Additionally, I maintain my connection to the family farm in Nebraska by spending two months out of the year farming with my father.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
So many struggles! The bureaucracy of the city of West H0llywood (seriously…fuck me), delays with construction when trying to open up and paying for rent before being open to the public, to creating awareness that we are even here is a challenge. Thankfully I am a strong willed and focused person and was able to get through the unnecessary red tape generated by opening a business in West Hollywood and am happy to say we have been here for 4 years.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the V Wine Room story. Tell us more about the business.
V Wine Room specializes in small batch California Boutique (garagiste) wines, small batch French Champagnes and California craft beer. We are known for our large procured wine list (over 100 wines by-the-glass and over 200 bottles) representing most of the AVA’s in California. We do wine flights all day, every day where people can select all red, white or a combination of red and white wines. I’m proud that we have built a business here that nobody else is doing. Sure there are other wine bars in LA, but most of them are bars with a wine list including 10 or a few more wines by-the-glass, tapas bars with wine and still others are full bars. We are a dedicated wine bar and our focus is on bringing amazing California wines down to Los Angeles. Another thing that sets us apart is that I do not utilize brokers or distributors. We are winery direct. We represent the winemaker and act as an extension of his or her tasting room. Every staff member can speak to the wine, winemaker, region, varietal and tasting notes of each wine in the room. We are definitely unique in that regard, especially with the large number of wines available.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Luck? I’m extremely lucky to have an amazing support system of friends, eager-to-learn staff members, parents and local clientele who love what we do here. In life? I believe I have been responsible to create my own luck.

Pricing:

  • Monday madness – $8 glasses of wine while the bottle lasts
  • daily happy hour of $7-11 glasses of wine until 7:00 pm
  • $15 wine flights all day

Contact Info:

  • Address: V Wine Room
    903 Westbourne Drive
    West Hollywood, CA 90069
  • Website: www.vwesthollywood.com
  • Phone: 310-339-9202
  • Email: mikey@vwesthollywood.com
  • Instagram: @vwineroom
  • Facebook: @vwineroom
  • Twitter: @vwineroom

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