August’s First Friday saw the ribbon cutting of Salud! Wine Bar, Event Center and Wine Storage in downtown Camas. Owned by Gerald and Yolanda Taylor and Tony and Raechill Dotson, the wine-centric business is a culmination of 15 years of extensive wine tasting throughout Washington, Oregon and California and honing their palates as members of several wine clubs.
Within the 6,500-square-foot space, guests can enjoy a cozy wine bar with several seating vignettes. The actual tasting bar seats six and was designed and crafted by Gerald Taylor from used wine staves.
“It’s beautiful. It’s just one of the highlights of the bar as you walk in,” said Raechill. “We want people to feel like it’s a home away from home.”
The wine list consists of over 40 different wines – some by the glass – from around the world including the Northwest, Italy, Spain, Australia, France and Germany.
Also reclaimed are barn doors that separate the wine bar from the event space. Salud! owners contracted with a gentleman in Chehalis who built them out of wood from a 1920’s barn house in Ashland, Oregon.
Above the barn doors is a sign that welcomes visitors to Bella Vino, the event center that hosts live music on Friday and Saturday nights and can be rented out for a variety of private gatherings. It’s also where Wine 101 classes will be held as well as pallet painting parties, wine and cheese pairings and other educational and entertainment offerings.
Encompassing over half the square footage is Wineville – Salud’s version of wine storage.
“It’s a little city all fixed up,” Raechill said. “People that rent the walk-in cellars decorate their area to look like a house.”
Tenants enter on Main Street and side roads are occupied by different sized storage cellars along Syrah Lane, Chardonnay Way and Champagne Court, to name a few. Single case lockers are the most popular size with 120 in inventory starting at a $25 monthly rental fee. Other options include eight-case lockers, 16-case and there are even 17 walk-in condominiums that store 500 to 600 bottles each.
Renting in Wineville comes with perks similar to a wine club membership and there is also a wine club for folks not interested in wine storage.
Salud! also staffs its own chef. Chef Joleen Person is behind all the house-made breads, spreads, desserts and more. A weekend brunch is featured on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. when mimosa flights are available to pair with home-baked English muffins, scones and quiches.
Not quite ready for opening weekend, outdoor seating at the front of Salud! will be coming in the next couple of weeks with a back patio for approximately 30 people scheduled to roll out in time for cool fall nights.
“We chose Camas because Camas is such a quaint community and it’s growing and the people are just so friendly,” said Raechill. “We waited two years for this space. It’s all a part of what our vision was and now we’re here and we just thank everyone who’s come together to help us open it.”
Salud! Wine Bar, Event Center and Wine Storage is located at 224 N.E. 3 Ave. in Camas.