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Group plans to open wine bar on Main Street


Brad Oliver and Levi Seekins take a glass of red wine in front of racks they're building inside the establishment they plan to open this spring. - Jacob Wagner photo

A new vibe may find its way to Main Street in Grand Coulee in the form of The Wine Bar.

The aptly named establishment will feature wines and food pairings, and the owners are hoping it will become a spot where people come to talk and break bread.

The owners are Brad Oliver, Levi and Rachel Seekins, and Jeff Henry.

Oliver and Levi Seekins have been friends since 1990, growing up in the area.

Seekins and Henry played basketball together for Vanguard University. Henry resides in Paso Robles, California, where he works as an apprentice winemaker for Dubost Winery, working with fruit selection, wine pressing, barreling, and more.

"He is very knowledgeable about wines," Oliver said.

Inside the storefront formerly used for a sandwich shop next to The Siam Palace, they are building the wine racks, bar, and tables themselves out of old wood salvaged from barns in the surrounding area, bringing local history to the forefront of their aesthetic.

"It's going to be kind of country themed, classy but laid back at the same time," Seekins said. "We really got into wine in the last couple of years. The community and the feel around wine is relationships, it's conversation, it's good music, good wine and good food. I think wine is one of the best ways to enjoy a conversation. We also want a place where people can come and, if they want to, they can get a little dressed up."

The owners plan to host wine-and-food pairings, including cheeses, breads, and chocolates, as well as a rotating menu of seasonal appetizers, and maybe a few meals.

Patrons to The Wine Bar will be able to buy a glass or a flight of wines, a whole bottle, or even just buy bottles to take home, if they choose.

"You can come in, have a couple of glasses, cork that thing up, and take it home," Seekins said.

The owners plan to have special nights with certain pairings, host parties and events, and are playing with the ideas of having a wine club. They also want to have winemakers come in and teach classes that have to do with wine, and further down the road maybe even start their own vineyard. "Our long term goal is to make our own wine," Seekins said, with Oliver adding that "that's years down the road."

The wine selection of The Wine Bar will have a wide range, from simple to complex, things for newbies and things for connoisseurs, and will focus on, but not be limited to, Washington wines.

"We don't want to get backed into one corner," Oliver said. "We've been shown some great stuff from Walla Walla and Yakima, but we're also going to have some from California. We're not huge on imports but we will have some. We tasted some fantastic imports, and we're like, 'We don't have a choice, we have to get this.'"

Seekins said they also will carry some select beers, and even sake, which can be paired with some Asian foods.

"I think we have a lot of dreams right now," Seekins said. "We don't know exactly what will work, but what we're most confident in is people are going to really enjoy coming here. We're going to have great energy. Brad and I are going to be serving and we find ourselves to be people who love this community, and are going to be excited to show people a good time."

Seekins' favorite wine? Cabernet. And Oliver's? "I'm a port guy."

"We're about 5 percent along our wine journey, but we know 95 percent of how to enjoy wine," Seekins said. "We're learning all the time, we're tasting more wines."

They are tentatively planning to hold a grand opening on May 5, but they will know for certain when the time approaches.

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