Maggie’s Attic; Mount Dora wine & beer lounge perfect for chatting, chilling and checking out a world’s worth of wine & beer
We’d passed the low white shopping row on numerous occasions. Thinking it was just more shops along Mount Dora’s small town streets, we hadn’t considered it a priority to explore. There was always a crowd, or at least a group of people milling about in the courtyard of this “small town strip mall,” so passing by was never but an after thought.
This day we’d come to town for a TBEX meet-up; a bunch of travel bloggers getting together to talk about our craft, learn new things, and as part of our presence, discover something about our hosts.
In this case the Central Florida town of Mount Dora, the cafe One Flight Up and wine bar Maggie’s Attic. A day in a town I love.
Having been the primary promoter of our meeting being in Mount Dora, I was charged with leading the group from One Flight Up to Maggie’s – ironically having passed it all those times I knew its location, just never been inside. Still, I was a bit nervous that I was wrong and that I’d lead the 14 wanderers around in circles or that I would end up on a totally wrong street.
Fears slipped away when I spotted the sign, yet I had no idea what to expect beyond the front door. I’d trusted my friend and our local host, Brian, (www.whattodoinmountdora.com) that Maggie’s (Maggie’s Attic of Florida) was a great top-off location, but what if I was wrong? What if I got us all into something lame?
I was among the last to step through the doors into the darkened room, finding the atmosphere captivating, a warm space where people could gather and feel at once in a cellar wine room, comfy living room and Friend’s-like gathering space.
The man-cave-feel wasn’t alienating of women, rather the opposite; what woman doesn’t like a comfy spot to curl up and chat with friends while someone else does the serving and cleaning?
Maggie’s caught me by surprise, the first words coming from my mouth upon entering, “how did we miss this? It’s adorable”. Dark, but cozy, warm and inviting, couches sit on either side of the entry path, tables for placing drinks or for event spreads holding platters of cheese. All around the implements of wine tasting, culinary delight and beer indulgence are offered for atmosphere and purchase.
Shelves around the comfortably small room feel more like a library lined with bottles than a store. The setting, a family’s home where friends gather to talk, commiserate and share the latest gossip, talk of their families, dogs and hobbies. All conversation here is for the taking, open with familiarity to even those who pass through the door strangers only to leave new-found friends.
For our visit we enjoy the choice of two flights; white or red. This was a special party, arranged by our town host, Brian, and something others wishing a private event could enjoy.
Not with an event or private group? You can still enjoy tastings, a glass or purchase a bottle. Settle in here or take it home, but Maggie’s knowledgeable staff are waiting to help you through your choices or provide you an old friend you’re wishing to enjoy again.
I enjoyed the white flight, tasting a range of options from around the world. In the end – and while the first three were very good – I loved the Columbia Riesling from Columbia Valley, Washington. Sweet and playful, it tickled my tongue and instantly made me want more.
Along with being open to the general public, Maggie’s offers a Wine Club and monthly activities for wine lovers. No matter your level of interest, expertise or overall participation in the wine community, you’ll feel at home at Maggie’s – everyone becomes a friend.
Personally I’m by no means a wine expert. I enjoy a glass of wine and am working to expand my knowledge base. This afternoon get-together at Maggie’s was my first such event – outside a quick run-thru tasting at Lakeridge Winery. I’m opening my world up to more tastes and culinary experiences and wine tasting is among those goals.
For Assistant Laura wine is a glass of something she enjoys on occasion. She’s got very specific tastes and isn’t all that interested in tasting all sorts of different things.
For both of us, the opportunities at Maggie’s were met with an equal respect and care as the more advanced wine aficionados in the group. Those who just wanted to try the wine and get a little buzzed joined in equally well. Maggie’s is for everyone’s taste.
Next time your in Mount Dora, or you’re looking for a place to enjoy some time with friends or just relaxing in Central Florida, seek out Maggie’s Cellar and enjoy a glass, but don’t be surprised if you take home a bottle… and return to Maggie’s again and again.
For its fun, its warm and rich setting, its many choices and an atmosphere that invites you to return again and again,
*** We have upgraded Maggie’s Attic. With subsequent visits and having attended more events than those arranged for us, we are thrilled to move Maggie’s Attic from 4 Diamonds to:
We give Maggie’s Attic: