Wine man Chan Cox is growing his offerings again.
With nine Wine World locations under his belt, his location in Miramar Beach across from Silver Sands Outlets was the only one of the nine that that was marketed as a wine outlet.
That changed this week, however, as the former Wine World Outlet joins its sister stores as it is transformed into a full-service store, wine bar, and cheese shop.
"The transformation is taking place because this is what our customers wanted," said vice president of sales Michel Thibault. "People kept asking for things we have in the other stores but didn't have at the outlet."
With the former wine outlet completely remodeled, the Wine Bar will now look like its sister stores, offering gift baskets, gifts, wine utensils, high-end glassware, cheeses, wines by the glass, and lunch, as well as their standard selection of wines by the bottle.
Formerly based at the Destin store, Thibault is now be based at the new Wine Bar, where he will oversee the wine, cheese, and restaurant operations.
Coming onboard as chef at the new location is Sandor Zombori, who was formerly with The Vue on 30A, and owned his own fine-dining restaurant in Seagrove — Sandor's.
"Sandor coming onboard will make us better," said Cox. "That's the most interesting part of this transformation, is that I will have two 'Old World' guys there — Sandor and Michel."
The two men will collaborate on pairing dishes and wine, and for cheese plates with wine.
"There will be a good bit of collaboration and it will be a teamwork place," he said. "It will be great."
Unlike the other local Wine World locations, this one will not serve dinner, but only lunch.
"The menu will be similar to the other locations, but with Sandor's special twist," said Thibault.
"We will come up with a menu that is different that he created using his recipes," said Cox. "We want to do something different and exciting. I can't wait. I am so impressed with him (Sandor) — his passion, his dedication, his Old World work ethic. I am proud to have these guys."
The menu will feature weekly specials.
Although the Wine Bar only serves lunch, it will be available at night for special events, and already has two booked.
On Aug. 20 the location hosted Sharron McCarthy, who flew in to lead a wine seminar and a five-course Banfi wine dinner. McCarthy is the former president of the Society of Wine Educators.
As for the outlet wine prices, Cox said his stores already meet anyone's prices, so all that is different is that it is not being merchandised as an outlet.
The Wine Bar opened Monday for lunch. It will be open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. with lunch served until 3 p.m. The familiar cheese shop will be open all day. At the bar, cheese plates will be available to order along with glasses of wine. As at the other Wine World locations, buy a bottle of wine off the shelf and corkage fee is $10.
For more information call 654-8805.