Local Businesses and COVID-19: Francos Wine To Reopen Tuesday with Curbside Pickup, Delivery

After voluntarily shutting down for two weeks—the first in its 87-year history—Francos Wine Merchants is set to open Tuesday under a new schedule and operating model. The Elm Street mainstay’s new hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday (closed Sunday and Monday). It’s offering free local delivery in addition to curbside service. What follows is our Q&A with Carl Franco (see additional business information at bottom). New Canaanite: You all are known in this community well beyond the wine shop itself.

Local Business and COVID-19: Francos Wine Merchants

[Editor’s Note: During the town emergency due to COVID-19, NewCanaanite.com is publishing a daily Q&A with a local business navigating major changes in the community.]

Carl Franco of Francos Wine Merchants on Elm Street responded to our COVID-19-related questions. Here’s our exchange. New Canaanite: What has the past week been like for you and the market/wine shop? We are seeing fewer customers thru the door and more via Internet or phone. What changes are you seeing in customer/client behavior?

Biz on Biz: Franco’s Loves Family Britches’ ‘Personal Touch’

On a muggy Monday afternoon, I stepped into Franco’s Wine Merchants, an Elm Street mainstay that has been in operation since 1933. Franco’s specializes in fine wines, single malt scotch and other spirits. Unfortunately, I wasn’t there for a drink – instead I was there to find out their favorite New Canaan product or service for NewCanaanite.com’s “Biz on Biz” feature. 

I was greeted by refreshingly cool air, and Carl Franco’s warm smile. When asked what local business he thought deserved recognition, Franco didn’t hesitate before launching into a glowing recommendation of Family Britches, the well-established clothing store on Main Street, where he has been shopping for at least 25 years. “I’ve always liked their personal touch that they give every day when you walk in there,” Franco said.

New Canaan Merchants on Keeping Up Summer Business

As we enter the end of July and August, many New Canaan residents will bear the beach, mountain, and city traffic for annual summer vacation trips. With the decreased foot traffic, many merchants routinely describe business as slow during this time. NewCanaanite went around town to some local businesses to see how they actively avoid the end of summer sales slump. Phil Williams, New Canaan Music

“How do we deal with the New Canaan Business Clear? We’re staying open our regular hours, a lot of businesses close for a week or reduce their hours, but we keep our lessons going year round.