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Attention pirates of Pike: first look inside new Capitol Hill rum bar Rumba

One of the largest rum collections on the West Coast now calls Pike Street home. Rumba, the newest venture from Travis Rosenthal, owner of neighboring Tango, opens up Friday for the palm-tree loving public. 

“I love rum. It has a lot more complexity than people understand — it really is misunderstood,” Rosenthal said at Rumba’s preview opening Thursday night. “It’s so much less regulated than other spirits — there is a lot of variety.”

Rumba boasts a 200+ collection of rum, much of which had to be purchased researched! in the Caribbean. Earlier this summer, we told you about manager Kate Perry’s travels to prepare the new venture that should help further connect the new bar and Tango to the increasingly popular food and drink scene around the Melrose Market.

Located at 1112 Pike, Rumba is made to look like Ernest Hemingway hired a Pike/Pine interior designer, threw a wad of cash and said go to town: rosewood walls and floors, bookshelves lined with curated knick knacks. Palm frond fans circle overhead, and a giant taxidermy marlin rests on the wall. Island music, dim lighting, and nautical vibes, complete the atmospheric pitch. Servers scurry around carrying large daiquiris and bartenders climb up ladders like sailors on the main sail, grabbing all sorts of rum you didn’t even know existed. Argggh.

CHS first told you about the plans for Rumba back in May as the project began to take shape inside the space left behind with the exit of street fashion outlet Goods. In a sweet easter egg-ode to the skateboard clothing apparel store that formerly occupied the space, a Goods logo is hidden somewhere in the new bar. Have a drink and try to spot it.

The Caribbean-inspired bar food prepared by chef Daniel Perez includes coconut breaded prawns ($12), fish and veggie tacos (3 for $10), and spicy smoked chicken wings ($10.50) .To top it off, Rumba features the work of pastry chef Joanna Chau. Rum cake, a baked pastry dough empanada, and deep fried banana fosters will add to the rum-fueled fun.

Rumba is open for the world starting Friday night. Here’s the message posted by the bar last night:

Dearest Friends!

We are proud to announce that Rumba will officially be open for business tomorrow evening! Our hours will be Sunday-Thursday 5pm to 1am, Friday and Saturday 5pm to 2am. 

See you tomorrow,


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