The Charm Is in the Details at Cellar 313

A charming interior meets well-curated wines at this quaint Grosse Pointe hotspot


Octopus salad is among the options of small plates available at the wine bar

The thought of opening a cozy wine bar offering just a few small plates had been in the back of Charlie Brown’s mind for “four or five years,” the Grosse Pointe entrepreneur says, as he glances around his Cellar 313 much like a proud father.

The 32-seat spot named for the local area code, was put together by Brown and business partner, Joe Tompkins, when the former two-story law office became available in 2015. The partners had each recently retired from the automotive manufacturing business and were looking for a second career.

They snapped up the building but then took their time with the planning. The results of a year and a half of work show it. In Brown’s words, “we tore it up,” and redesigned it from floor to ceiling.

Details include the glass-enclosed wine room that features a collection of antique corkscrews and the gleaming new tin ceiling above. They traveled to the Chicago showroom of Restoration Hardware to choose the sophisticated furnishings, like the sleek antique leather armchairs pulled up to copper-topped cocktail tables, the large framed mirror opposite the bar, and the tile floor that mimics wood in a herringbone pattern. Vintage Edison bulbs offer soft lighting.

Brown is the hands-on partner who put together the premium wine list, which includes primarily French, Italian, and American wines with a few from Germany, Spain, South America, and New Zealand. It’s a well-curated list with virtually none of the usual suspects. Brown credits wine distributor Chip Delsener from AHD Vintners with helpful input.

About 20 wines are available by the glass. “Not much beer,” admits the proprietor, but cocktails, including a house original — the 313, made with bourbon, spiced pear liqueur, Luxardo maraschino, and torched orange zest — are available along a nice selection of bourbon, scotch, and rye.

Small plates include a cheese and charcuterie plate, smoked salmon, and an octopus salad. The offerings will vary from time to time, as will the wine list.

Cellar 313 is among a strip of shops and restaurants in the part of Grosse Pointe Park that once was known as “the Cabbage Patch.” That slightly derogatory description is definitely outdated. “I’d like to change it to ‘West End,’ ” says Brown. 

15112 Kercheval Ave., Grosse Pointe Park; 313-458-8544. Mon.- Thurs 4 p.m.-10 p.m., Fri.- Sat. 4 p.m.-midnight.


Edit Module
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

A Long Day's Coney Into Night

What’s a typical Friday like at Detroit’s iconic Lafayette Coney Island? A tag team crew of Hour Detroit staffers finds out.

Fresh Fare

Treetops Resort's Farm2Fork events tap the bounty of local producers.

Joebar and Frame Whip Up Kevell-Worthy Noshes for Hanukkah

The Hazel Park restaurants are hosting a holiday soiree for all

The World's Fastest Pizza Maker Reveals the Science Behind Detroit Mootz Pizzas

Six-time winning chef of the prestigious World Pizza Games, Bruno DiFabio, brings his famous-New York pies to the Motor City

Ferndale’s Antihero Serves Japanese Plates You’ve Been Craving

From kimchi to crispy ramen, and high balls to habchi, this Izakaya bar is worth waiting in line for
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. The Makings of the Shinola Hotel
    When the Detroit brand’s first foray into hospitality opens its doors, it’ll offer customers...
  2. My Two Christmases
    An Armenian-Iranian, Detroit-based writer reflects on transposing the holiday across continents
  3. An Hour with ... Carmen Harlan
    Broadcast journalist and founder of the Carmen Harlan Collection
  4. New Year’s Eve, Brooklyn Style
    Tips for celebrating 2019 from the pros at Brooklyn Outdoor
  5. Main Review: SheWolf
    Born in Detroit but inspired by Rome, SheWolf takes diners on a culinary journey
  6. Hour Detroit and Detroit Home’s Downtown Living Tour 2018
    Hour Detroit and Detroit Home’s third annual Downtown Living Tour took place September 7th-9th....
  7. Cocktail Recipe: Toddy Incarnata
  8. Meet the Makers: Tait Design Co.
    How an after-work hobby ascended to a booming business
  9. The Art of Gifting
    Metro Detroit tastemakers from all walks of life offer a glimpse of what’s on their holiday...
  10. Comeback Catering
    Dish, in Detroit, pushes through hard times with consistently delicious food