Clovis · Food

More than wine and dine: Cork & Knife brings a new flavor to Old Town Clovis

A new boutique wine and cheese shop will soon be adding a unique experience to Old Town Clovis. 

Cork & Knife will have its official ribbon cutting on July 8 and will be located on the southwest corner of Clovis Ave. and 4th St. 

“It’s like a wine bar meets a retail store,” Cork & Knife co-owner Derry Van Nortwick said. “It’s got its own vibe.” 

The new storefront will offer patrons a selection of 100 different varieties of wine, along with various meats, cheeses and a small seasonal bistro menu. People can purchase bottles of wine to-go, as well as cheese platters, or they can take a seat and enjoy a glass of wine. 

Nortwick said the wines and cheeses are focussed on domestic products, as well as internationally from France, Italy and Spain. 

“You can shop for wine, pull it off the shelf, sit down and enjoy it, or use the store as a standard retail outlet and come buy your cheeses to-go,” Nortwick said. “There’s a lot of interactive possibilities with Cork & Knife where one person can come and experience the space differently each time.” 

This is the third Cork & Knife location to open, following one each in Escondido and Rancho Santa Fe. 

The stores are part of the larger San Diego-based Grand Restaurant Group, which also owns the DiCicco’s in Old Town Clovis. 

Nortwick, a certified sommelier, opened the first two locations last year and has been working for nine months to get the Clovis establishment up and running. Part of that process included installing customized cabinets that highlight the wine bottles to make it more than an average wine store. 

“It’s been a stretch, and I’m really proud of the way it came out,” Nortwick said. “I think it’s lovely. I’m really hoping that the community embraces us and welcomes us – a seat at their table if you will – and will come and frequent the store and enjoy it.” 

Along with offering catering options, Cork & Knife will also host various events.

Nortwick said he has had different winemakers come in to offer tastings, as well as tequila makers, hot sauce makers and a diverse range of options. 

The last event, which was in the Rancho Santa Fe shop, was “a night in Spain.” 

“I had a Spanish guitarist, we did some Spanish tapas and I had Spanish wine that I was pouring. Pretty simple, and we had a great crowd,” Nortwick said. 

“We’re trying to come up with foodie events that bring people into the store, get to sit down and enjoy and just expose what we do.” 

Nortwick is thrilled to be bringing his store, which he refers to as “experienced-based retail,” to the Old Town Clovis community. 

“I think it really does bring something to that village sort of idea where you have your tailor, you have your flower shop, your retail spaces, your restaurants, your cheese shop – a place to get jams that are locally made,” Nortwick said. 

He has connected with several people in the community who make hot sauces and infused balsamics, for example, to sell their products in the shop. Nortwick has also worked with a husband and wife farmer who picked fruit and made jam just a couple of miles from Cork & Knife. 

“We’re just kind of a platform to showcase what Clovis has to offer culinarily and then also to just mirror that with a really cool bottle shop,” Nortwick said.

“I have wines that start in the low teens, and you could spend all the way up to $300-400 a bottle if you want. But the idea is that there’s something for everyone.”

Daniel Gligich is a reporter for The San Joaquin Valley Sun, focusing on Fresno State Athletics and the southern San Joaquin Valley. Email him at daniel.gligich@sjvsun.com.