Wine Shop of Charleston owner sells after 25 years

Charleston natives David and Laurie Osbon recently acquired The Wine Shop of Charleston from Debbie Marlowe, who ran the Lockwood Drive store for 25 years.

The Osbons returned to Charleston after seven years in Nashville, jumping at the opportunity to purchase the shop. 

“We have always had the desire to get back to Charleston, and we have been looking at these types of businesses,” David said. “I walked upstairs and introduced myself to Debbie, and that conversation led to us buying the place.” 

Marlowe opened the shop in 1995, and the Osbons were immediately impressed with her track record in the Lowcountry wine community.  

“That’s one of the things that really appealed to us,” David said. “Someone who has invested 25 years into building one of the most diverse wine collections in Charleston was really appealing to us.” 

Laurie and David Osbon
Photo provided

Prior to the sale, Marlowe added sommelier Desmond Garrity to the Wine Shop’s staff. Garrity has previous experience at the Charleston Grill, Slightly North of Broad and High Cotton. From 2008-2019, Garrity was the owner/operator of Crushed Fine Wine in Mount Pleasant. The Osbons recently added sommelier John Riddick to the team, with plans to have one of them on hand during store hours. 

Laurie has been expanding her wine knowledge since the store was purchased, completing the level two course with the Wine and Spirit Education Trust. She hopes to complete her level three certification by November. 

The Osbons said they won’t change much at the store, but they did renovate the wine bar and hope to use their on-premise liquor license to host Friday wine tastings when the time is right.  

“Pre-COVID, every Friday night there was a wine tasting,” David said. “The availability of seating and the atmosphere was limited, so we had a custom wine bar built and installed. Once we start to come back to some sort of normalcy, we want to restart the tastings.” 

For the time being, they plan to add outdoor seating to host special tastings and are also looking to expand their website to allow for online ordering. 

“We have close to 6,000 bottles of wine,” David said. “The next stage for us is to explore the uniqueness of that website and purchasing online to help with COVID-related stuff.” 

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