Brix Owner to Open Unprecedented, New Concept in Midtown Crossing
Midtown Crossing wrote:Omaha, Neb. – Dan Matuszek, owner of Omaha original Brix – A Wine and
Spirits Experience, is announcing plans to open a second business in
Midtown Crossing, and this one, he said, is globally unprecedented.
Called Grane (a tribute to the staples of whiskey making with a
creative spelling twist), the comfortable after-work spot will blend a
growing affinity for whiskeys and craft cocktails with the most modern,
small portion whiskey dispensing/sampling technology – all wrapped in the
feel and décor of pre- and post-prohibition 1920’s and 30’s.
“We are the first in the world to create a brand around small
portion-size whiskey dispensing, married with a 1920’s and 1930’s style
craft cocktail menu,” said Matuszek, formerly with the E. & J. Gallo Winery
and a 28-year veteran of the wine and spirits industry.
WineEmotion™ USA, known for its line of hi-tech wine dispensing
systems, is collaborating with Matuszek to create the new
whiskey-dispensing “Bartender by WineEmotion™.” Like its wine-focused
counterpart, “Bartender” will enhance the customer experience by perfectly
measuring sample-sized pours of whiskeys at .5oz, 1oz, and 1.5oz levels and
dispensing it in its ideal form.
“We will have five, seven-bottle ‘Bartender’ units, so a total of 35
bottle positions for sampling with a SmartCard, plus plenty more whiskey
options behind the bar,” Matuszek explained. “This is a new business
venture for WineEmotion, which is granting Grane ‘global exclusive rights’
through May of 2015 to test this new dispensing product.”
Scheduled to open in early June, Grane will occupy a 2,500 sq. ft.
space in Midtown Crossing between Cantina Laredo and Saints Pub + Patio,
separate from Brix.
“The timing was right for someone to step in and create a unique
brand around the tremendous growth of whiskey here in Omaha, throughout the
U.S. and around the world. We felt we had an advantageous position given
our experience with dispensing wine and our strong relationship with
WineEmotion USA and its global parent company in Tuscany,
Italy.” (Matuszek’s Brix at Midtown Crossing was the first to install
WineEmotion equipment in the U.S. and currently has one of the largest
installations in North America.)
The team behind WineEmotion is equally excited about this new
"When I first met with Dan in early 2013, I knew immediately his
business acumen and passion for Grane were the perfect traits to connect
with WineEmotion and its founder and CEO, Riccardo Gosi," said Roberto
Rinaldini, master distributor of WineEmotion in North America. "It was very
apparent from the start that the synergy between the two visionaries would
create something exciting."
Gosi commented, "Grane is a fantastic concept that sees our
dispensers partner, once again, with a great brand. I am flattered to work
with Dan. He is a professional businessman who really knows what to do. It
is for that reason WineEmotion provided the support for such an innovative
project, and I am convinced that this concept will grow rapidly."
In addition to its whiskeys and craft cocktails, Grane will offer a
selection of whiskey-inspired draught beers on tap, wine by the glass and a
small appetizer menu.
“There will also be a retail portion for off-sale whiskey,” Matuszek
said. “So, what guests taste and sample on the ‘Bartender’ dispensing
units, they can purchase on site.”
One year after opening Brix at Midtown Crossing, Matuszek is thrilled
to be bringing the Grane concept to the development.
“We love the energy; we love what’s going on in Midtown Omaha,” said
Matuszek. “We’ve enjoyed a great relationship with Mutual of Omaha with the
Brix project and we look forward to bringing another Omaha-based concept to
Midtown Crossing, a great location to test our pilot store.”