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    Operations Manager Jose Rodriguez serves wine and more to patrons of a wine tasting.
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    202 N. Main is a wine bar (and more), in downtown Mooresville, NC. Owner Michael Parker, center, discusses wine with Jayne Sprinkle, left, and Eileen Kenter, right, during a tasting at the shop.
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    Jenna Thompson, center, and Monica Hicks, right, sample wines.
  • LNM_FINEWINES

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    Operations Manager Jose Rodriguez.
  • LNM_FINEWINES

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    Owner Michael Parker.
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    Tim Jorden and Becky Gleason sample wines during a tasting at the shop.

Norman Nights: It's Time to Wine

By Kelli Robinson | Photography by Gayle Shomer

Posted: Thursday, Mar. 01, 2012

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A flag hangs on the inside wall at a cozy little wine bar and shop located in downtown Mooresville. It says: “Wine a bit, you’ll feel better.” If you believe this philosophy, the people at 202 North Main want to show their support for your way of thinking.

Situated at the corner of N. Main Street and W. Moore Avenue, the intimate, historic spot has been a favorite among wine connoisseurs for nearly a decade. The shop’s name has changed a few times over the years. It’s latest incarnation was unveiled about four years ago.

Owner Michael Parker took great strides in restoring the space that was built around 1902. What was once a turn-of-the-century hardware store now offers one of the best wine selections in the Lake Norman area. But don’t visit just to pick up a bottle of vino to go. Make it a meeting place for an afternoon or evening of fun with friends. The atmosphere won’t disappoint.

Walking into 202 North Main is inviting. Creamy-colored walls, high ceilings and hardwood floors sprinkled with oriental rugs welcome you to a place that feels both comfortable and sophisticated. This shop is a great year-round destination. Settle in during the fall and winter months for a glass of merlot, or in the spring and summer to enjoy a cool, crisp glass of chardonnay.

The venue’s operations manager Jose Rodriguez knows his stuff, having worked in the wine retail industry for many years. “Selling wines is a blast,” he says. “There’s an art and science to selecting wines.”

Both Rodriguez and Parker want guests to not only try different wines but also understand the nuances of what they taste. “If you taste a wine you don’t like you need to know why,” explains Rodriguez. “Tell me the flavors you enjoy and I’ll help make selections based on this information.”

Parker and Rodriguez present a wide variety of wines from vineyards throughout the world. “The selections on our shelves represent someone’s hard work,” says Rodriguez. “And there’s always another vineyard to feature.”

Wine tastings give customers the best opportunity to sample different wines, and 202 North Main has tastings every Thursday evening at 7 p.m.. These are fun, casual and informative events. Guest presenters include representatives from various wine distributors and regions, so guests are able to sample a wide variety. It’s a great way to spend an evening for both wine connoisseurs and just friends looking for a unique outing. You’ll leave with more knowledge about the featured wines and a desire to come back for more.

Good wine and good music pair together nicely. Local music acts take center stage – which is actually a small intimate area situated among the high-top tables—every Friday and most Saturday nights. But don’t confuse 202 North Main with the bar scene. Rather, think of it as a concert hall that lets you enjoy your drinks during the performance.

“Musicians love playing here because the acoustics are fantastic,” says Rodriguez. “I’ve had to turn away musicians who want to play here because they’ve heard through the grapevine that it’s a great venue.”

While acoustic soloists and duets have been the main focus, Rodriguez hopes to expand the music scene over the next year. Open mic nights will be on Wednesdays beginning this month, and other new entertainment options are in the works

“We’ve had live music evenings where customers took the initiative and on the spur of the moment created a concert hall atmosphere,” says Rodriguez. “It was fantastic and I’d like to book some musicians with that scene in mind.”

You might expect to find 202 North Main in NoDa, Charlotte’s historic art district. But it’s flourishing in Mooresville’s historic downtown district, which continues to offer new dining and shopping options, and Parker and Rodriguez couldn’t be happier.

“Most of our advertising has been word of mouth,” explains Rodriguez. “People walking to and from events and other venues in Mooresville decide to stop in instead of passing by, and they become friends. New faces inevitably become regulars.”

Want to go?
Where: 202 N. Main, Ltd.
Address: 202 N. Main Street, Mooresville

Hours: Tue.—Wed. 12 p.m. - 6 p.m.; Thurs. 12 p.m. - 10 p.m.; Fri. 12 p.m. - 11 p.m. Sat. 12 p.m. - 11 p.m.
Details: 704-663-5445, http://202wines.com.

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