Wineries may be a New York City phenomenon. these small grocery stores offer convenience to countless neighborhoods and share similarities that go beyond cereal offerings. So for all of you non-New Yorkers (and locals who still don’t get it), here we answer the question “what is a winery?” once and for all.
the history of new york wineries
The name bodega comes from the Spanish word, which can mean “warehouse”, “warehouse” or “grocery store”. Most of them were opened by Latino immigrants who came to New York after World War II and wanted a local convenience store they could go to every day. New Yorkers as a whole came up with the idea, and these small businesses multiplied.
what is a warehouse?
A bodega is a small convenience store that sells staples like chips, candy, coffee, soft drinks, lottery tickets, and over-the-counter remedies, along with household items like laundry detergent and garbage bags. some have a deli counter, some sell beer, and some have none, but what defines them goes beyond a single product.
most are open 24/7, ensuring you’ll always have access to ramen and detergent even in the most difficult situations (say, if you’re doing laundry and feel hungry in the middle of the week). night). They’re also ubiquitous, with more than 8,000 wineries spread across New York’s five boroughs. the number is not 100% certain, because the health department only recognizes 7104, but the number is likely much higher. thanks to all those bodegas, if you need to pick something up after a night out, you can do it at 4am. m. without moving from your neighborhood.
what is a cellar cat?
As all New Yorkers know, many wineries also have cats. Although some buyers may not appreciate their presence, cellar cats actually serve a greater good: exterminating rodents, whose presence (trust us) is less favorable than even the most cantankerous feline.
can I ship packages to my local warehouse?
But perhaps the strangest concept for visitors to grasp is that wineries are neighborhood landmarks. Locals often know the owners and workers, and can sometimes count on these stores to accept packages and hold keys for visitors instead of a doorman. they are open 24/7 and therefore very reliable. many of these store owners are more than happy to help, and it is common practice to pay a small thank you fee for any activity that is not strictly winery related.
other things you should know about wineries
many of them usually have a credit card minimum, so be sure to bring cash, or you’ll find yourself doubling up on ice cream and cookie dough, not a tragic outcome by any means, but good to remember. Also, you can’t assume that most of these stores sell beer, as some simply sell sodas and juices. luckily there’s usually another bodega just down the block with everything you’re looking for. And if you’re new to town or need help finding an electrician or handyman, consider reaching out to your local warehouse team for advice. As mentioned above, they can often help receive packages, and their local knowledge can extend far beyond what you might expect.
the future of wineries
although wineries are a new york staple, that doesn’t mean they’re thriving; in fact, the opposite is unfortunately true. Due to the covid-19 pandemic, a large number of wineries and other small businesses have closed. In the years before the pandemic, many local stores were forced to close due to rising rents and competition from chain stores. And in 2017, two former Google employees started a startup app, “Bodega,” that involved selling convenience store items at automated checkouts. many reacted angrily, criticizing the team for appropriating the winery’s name and trying to put these mom-and-pop stores out of business. Even after rebranding to “Stockwell” in 2019, the brand tanked in 2020. After all, the locals love these stores; they are a crucial part of the new york neighborhood landscape. and despite the difficulties and competition they face, they are not going anywhere any time soon.