The Chews Letter
Story by Cynthia McFarland • Photos by Joshua Jacobs
Brew Your Own Beverage
When opportunity knocks, it’s best to open the door, even when it means relocating and tackling something totally new. For Tim Allen and Adam Wood, owners of The Corkscrew Winery, that door opened in September 2019.
Both are Florida natives. Adam was raised in Ohio and joined the Air Force out of high school. Tim hails from Destin. The two met when Adam was stationed in Pensacola; they’ve been together since 2012 and married in 2017.
How It Began
“Adam wanted to own a business. I was working as a server,” recalls Tim. “We worked with Dawn Crown, a business broker from Ocala.”
After discovering that most of the Panhandle opportunities were in the medical and military fields, they agreed to look in Ocala. “We came down here in May 2019, and Dawn showed us three businesses. The Corkscrew kind of stood out. The concept was unique and not something we were familiar with,” says Tim.
Founded in 2012 by Joe and Kelli Carvalho, with locations in both Ocala and The Villages, The Corkscrew originally just offered the opportunity to make your own wine. The business expanded as a place to socialize over wine and snacks, and in 2016, craft beer-making classes were added.
Although neither Adam nor Tim had winery or brewery experience, they quickly realized this was the business for them. “After Adam got out of the military, he worked with an accountant. He had the financial business background, and I had worked in the service industry most of my life, so this was the best of both worlds for us,” says Tim. “We didn’t have a lot of wine knowledge, but we learned a lot from Joe and Kelli,” he adds.
How It's Going
Tim and Adam updated some of the recipes and now offer about two dozen wine recipes and about 12 craft beers. “We try to make it educational and fun,” says Tim, who enjoys teaching the beer classes, while they both teach wine-making.
“From trying new recipes, to making the product and interacting with customers, we make sure they’re having a good experience and having fun,” says Tim.
Beer-making classes are held at The Villages location and can take up to four hours. Wine-making classes take about an hour, after which the wine enters the aging process. Fermenting can take several months, depending on the wine. Participants then return to taste, cork, and bottle their creations.
In addition to wine and beer-making, The Corkscrew features a wine and beer bar, live music, and a venue for private events. At the Ocala location, customers rent out the back room and patio for celebratory events like birthdays, anniversaries, bridal showers, and more.
“We also do side events like paint and sip, wine yoga, and we want to do more things like that,” adds Tim.