Old Fashioned Charm in Danvers
The Country Store & Wine Shoppe has it all, from snacks to basic food items, wine and beer, handmade crafts and a nail salon next door by appointment.
Owners: Alison & Louis Nguyen
The Country Store & Wine Shoppe is owned and operated by Alison and Louis Nguyen. The couple purchased the building on Wenham Street in 2002, while their two boys were very small and soon established residence upstairs.
“I moved to Danvers from Lynn because this town is so nice to raise to my children (Kevin and Peter),” Alison said. Over the years, the little shop has grown almost as quickly as her boys, who are now both in college.
Alison, who has an entrepreneurial spirit, has been able use her ingenuity to turn their little store into so much more than your average small town convenience store.
In 2008, “Alison’s Nails” was launched. Located in the space beside the main store, and by appointment only, Alison offers individualized expert attention in all areas of aesthetics from manicures and fills to pedicures and waxing for a competitive price.
After the economy necessitated that Louis work outside the store, another opportunity arose that Alison embraced: jewelry designer. She noticed a beautiful bracelet on the wrist of a customer and discovered that the piece was handmade. After further investigation, she purchased a how-to DVD and taught herself the art of creating handmade beaded jewelry. She soon mastered the practice and has been offering her unique pieces in the shop since last year.
She features drop earrings, beaded crystal bracelets and crystal. Alison also incorporates modern elements, such as silver plated swirls and dragonfly charms, with traditional rhinestones and sparkly beads into her one-of-a-kind pieces.
The store itself carries basic convenience store items such as chips and snacks an stocks necessities such as bread, milk, cream, eggs, cheese, baking supplies and cereals. This is the type of neighborhood store where the neighbors dictate what is carried, and the Nguyens are always looking to accommodate.
“Regulars” rely on their hot cup of morning coffee and lottery tickets, and there is also a wide selection of beer and wine.
Evangeline (Hidish) Toomey, a longtime Danvers native who grew up in a three-family home on the corner of Water and Mill streets in the Danversport neighborhood, arrives each morning to purchase her paper and exchange pleasantries with Alison.
“I come in here to get my paper because it’s just so convenient,” Toomey said. “Especially even to get a loaf of bread. I mean, you can go downtown or up to the mall, but really, you can’t beat the convenience of this store, and they’re always so pleasant.”