He’s back! Carl Choate formerly of Parallel 42 Wine Bar in Riverside has returned to the location at 34 East Ave. and revamped the site and giving it a new name – Riverside Wine Bar – simple and to the point. The business, which has been open since mid-summer, held its official grand opening last weekend.

The Riverside resident and member of the Riverside Police Auxiliary said that while he still had been working in the food service profession, he missed the people. When the location became available, he seized the opportunity.

Changing the décor, Choate said he wants it to be “comfortable” and his choice of decor gives a calming feeling. While only open a short time, he will offer a full-service bar and has a menu of light fare – a variety of appetizers and desserts.

Choate plans most of the menu himself with the assistance of another cook and tries to incorporate some of the ingredients from the Riverside Farmers Market. Many of the ingredients are used on the homemade flatbread pizzas. There appears to be a Mediterranean touch to the menu, which is fine by me. Anything that includes prosciutto is good in my book.

Available for private parties, the Riverside Wine Bar can accommodate approximately 35 people. Closed on Sundays, the wine bar is open from Monday through Thursday from 5 to 11 p.m., and on Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to midnight.

Heading east I stopped at Riverside Wine and Spirits at Harlem and Longcommon, the site of the former Cork.

The business opened Friday, and new owner Nader Yahya is planning a grand opening at a later date, going thus far with a soft opening. While the shelves are fully stocked, he will soon have a wine station, gourmet cheeses and cigars.

This is the third wine and spirits store for Yahya, so he is no stranger to the business and wants serve the community by selling wines and craft beers that cover the spectrum of the price range.

Yahya greeted customers last weekend as they stopped in and made a point of saying if there was something they preferred, he would be happy to stock it. My visit to the Riverside Wine and Spirits also introduced me to the genial Sam (no last names, please) who was assisting his friend, Yahya, on that day and eager to talk about the stock they presently carry.

The hours were not listed, but the store is open 7 days a week.

I toast our newest Riverside businesses and their owners and encourage everyone to stop in you will be pleasantly surprised. Cheers!