When Mar and Richard Meyerhoefer moved to the Pacific Northwest 25 years ago, they quickly fell in love with the area. Mar is from Madrid and Richard is from New York, so they decided to combine their culture and their love for Spanish wines and tapas by opening a wine specialty shop in the Battle Ground community.
In October 2013, they first opened the doors of Emanar Cellars and began offering wine bottles for off-site consumption in addition to wine tastings onsite. The company is the only authentic wine and tapas wine bar in the county and the atmosphere transports customers to Spain. With the unique variety of Spanish wines that cannot be found at local big box wine stores, Emanar Cellars is a unique gem in the city. In 2014, they expanded their offerings by becoming a level-two restaurant, which allowed them to sell wine by the glass, as well as the option for wine bottle purchases for on-site consumption. At this time, they also expanded their food and beer menu.
“Upon opening, we joined the Battle Ground Chamber of Commerce and have been Battle Ground Business of the Year finalists for 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2018,” Richard said. “In 2015, we hired a winemaker from a local Battle Ground vineyard and winery to produce our own Emanar Cellars Spanish varietal wines sourced from the Columbia Valley AVA and Yakima Valley AVA.”
The Meyerhoefers also started gastronomy and wine tours of Spain for customers, and they have since taken three successful trips. They plan on taking two more groups this summer/fall and one next spring. Recently, the couple purchased the property next to them, which nearly doubled inside seating and provided additional outdoor seating. This also gave them a separate area for private parties and meetings, as well as an upstairs space that they use as an Airbnb rental. The company has two full-time employees as well as two backup employees that assist in busy weekends and event coverage. They plan on hiring another person in the next month.
“We chose Battle Ground because we have lived in this incredible city since 1994,” Richard said. “We wanted to become a bigger part of the community by establishing our business here, supporting the local economy and getting to know our neighbors better. We have seen a 266 percent net sales growth from 2014 to 2018.”
Emanar Cellars looks forward to more steady growth, but its dedication to the local area and its people is what they plan to continually focus on.
“We provide a warm and inviting place for the local community to meet and feel like they are a part of it,” Richard said. “Several customers have told us they feel like they are with family when they visit us — some have lost their spouses and loved ones, and find comfort with the friendships they have established at Emanar.”