With so much beer and coffee news over the past year, Capitol Hill wine lovers may have been feeling a little left out. Demand, it seems, remains strong as the owners of Revolution Wine discovered during their packed opening over the weekend at Belmont and Pike.
Opening Capitol Hill’s newest wine shop and wine bar was a decade in the making for owner Mark Brown, who first drew up the business plan in 2005. Several years working for Xbox’s marketing team put the dream on hold until last year when Brown and his wife, Carmen, secured the former home of The Feed Bag pet shop.
The Feed Bag lives on, by the way, in a new mobile format.
In keeping with couple’s vision for an unpretentious wine shop, most bottles fall in the $20-$30 range, though some go up to $50 — a slight deviation from their original $30 cap concept. “It just felt like it was an artificial governor,” Brown told CHS while juggling customers and wine shipments inside his new business.
Revolution currently carries 150 wines, which Brown intends to ramp up to 350. Smaller northwest labels are strongly represented along side California and European bottles. Brown will be holding tastings at 5 PM on Thursdays and Saturday tastings will frequently be lead by winemakers themselves.
Along with wine by-the-glass, the bar has a small but surprisingly robust cheese and charcuterie menu. There is a $20 corkage fee for any bottle in the shop. Chilled bottles of white wine will be available after new refrigerators are installed next week.
Patrons of the former Feed Bag shop will hardly recognize the revamped space. Brown pulled up several layers of flooring to expose the building’s original hardwood floors and stripped away 20-years of wall hangings to reveal a massive skylight.
A comic book style mural adds a big splash of color to the otherwise clean and simple store. Couches and chairs in the wine bar will give you a great view of E Pike through the shop’s corner windows.
The block was once home to another bottle shop — Pike Street Beer and Wine — which shuttered amid some shuffling on the block back when Sun Liquor moved in and The Feed Bag expanded. The Hill lost a wine shop last year as Boylston store Vino Verite pulled out and moved to Columbia City. Approaching its 30th year of wine business, EVS carries on the tradition on top of the Hill on 15th Ave E. Meanwhile, Bar Ferd’nand — both Lower and Upper in its larger, wood-fired oven-possessing Chophouse Row home, also keeps Capitol Hill’s wine game strong.
Learn more at revolutionwineshop.com.