There’s a brand new spot that just opened up in Blaine that we’d like to introduce you too: The Vault Wine Bar.
It comes by its name honestly as the building used to be a bank, and the original vault replete with its safe deposit boxes, still occupies a special corner of the business. The rest of the space is inviting, modern, warmly lit, and is the perfect place to meet friends for a glass of your favorite red or white.
It’s owned by seasoned wine aficionados and Blaine natives, Allen and Joanie Finston. Allen is also a physical therapist, and along with his wife, own and run Whatcom Physical Therapy which has grown to three clinic. The Vault’s daily operations fall to their longtime family friend Shanna Manning, who just happened to dedicate her career to the wine and fine dining world! After living in California for a number of years, immersed in the wine culture of Napa and Sonoma, she decided to bring her knowledge and passion back to her hometown and will be completing her sommelier training this fall. Wine had always been a hobby that brought them together but when the property came up for sale they saw an opportunity to bring a dream to life and a new culinary experience to the area.
The Vault has over 100 wines, with 5 on tap, and a fantastic selection of Washington and West Coast labels. Many of the Washington wines hail from Walla Walla, Yakima, or Red Mountain but there is also an expansive selection with exciting vintages that you won’t find anywhere else. A 1995 Chateauneuf-du-Pape called Amon-Ra from Australia is supposed to be particularly incredible. You can find a glass for any occasion, from casual meetups to celebrating special occasions, exploring new types or rediscovering old favorites, The Vault offers it all.
Their kitchen is run by local chef Taylor Hill, who is working to bring the flavors of Whatcom and Skagit Counties into their kitchen. Produce from Da’Vine Aquaponics in Bellingham, and cheeses from Ferndale Farmstead and Appel Farms, Twin Sisters Creamery and Gothberg Cheese will be crafted into light fare like salads, charcuterie boards, and simple sides. They strive to make as much as possible from scratch including the dressings, bread, and desserts!
Ok, now back to the wine. It’s worth spending a few more moments talking about their wines on tap. Not only are most of them local Washington wines, but serving wine in this way is a relatively new way of doing things and is part of their efforts to go towards zero waste.
One keg of wine, which is exactly the same quality as what you would find in the bottle, saves 26 glass bottles, as well as cork, labeling and shipping material. Added to the fact that not every bottle of wine is completely used, buying wine to tap reduces an enormous amount of waste. Wine on tap never touches air until it is about to be served and is less susceptible to variations in temperature which means you are sure to get a fresh and tasty pour.
If you live in NW Whatcom County stop in to check out this new business as soon as you can, and if you’re in Bellingham earmark it for your next trip north. They have a patio that would be perfect for these sunny fall afternoons. We can’t wait to see how this beautiful new business grows and evolves, can’t wait to hear about your experience with them – they won’t disappoint.