Here's a look inside Carmella's Wines, possibly the only wine bar in Portland with a former bank vault acting as a wine cellar. Owner Maggie Shippy opened the doors at Carmella's in mid-January, after revamping a historic building — dating to 1884 — into an open and airy bar with late-night hours, a 16-bottle wine dispensing unit, warm fireplace, and cutaways that allow guests to peer into the brick-walled, bank vault cellar. The Carmella's wine list sprawls to 22 pages, with two pages dedicated to pours available by the glass: in addition to sections devoted to bubbles, whites, and reds, Shippy offers eight dessert wines/Ports, four sherries, and a half-dozen aperitifs and digestifs.
The food menu is dedicated to snacking, with plates of wine-pairing classics like cheese plates, charcuterie, and dates with blue cheese and prosciutto; all bottles will be available for sale to-go. Carmella's is open now. Hours of operation: 4p.m. to midnight, Monday through Thursday; 4p.m. to 1a.m., Friday and Saturday.
· Carmella's Wines [Official site]