Jan-Marc Baker of Jan-Marc Wine Cellars is one of Portland's few, if not only, true garagistes. Sure, we have a strong and growing number of urban wineries, but few urban wine makers are still making wine out of their actual garage.
Since 2009, Baker has built a following with his small-batch wines (50 to 110 cases each), including pinot noirs, gewurztraminers, and rieslings from Willamette Valley grown grapes, as well as bold reds, roses, and barrel fermented chardonnays from grapes grown in the Columbia Gorge. And he does it all out of a 350-square-foot, two-car garage on N. Ainsworth Street.
That's not going to change, but this July he and his wife, Barbara, are adding a new wine bar and tasting room eight blocks away. "We have decided to keep wine production in the Ainsworth Street location, but open our wine bar/pub/tasting room/hangout nearby on a busy section of Killingsworth Street," he writes in a newsletter.
Called Garagiste (1225 N. Killingsworth St.), the space will offer wine, beer, cocktails and food, plus an outdoor patio. And you can refill bottles with Jan-Marc wines "for cheap," he says. "We're playing to our strengths, real good food and Barbara's desserts, good German beers on tap, a few bottles of whiskey and cozy booths to help you settle down."
While you're waiting for the big opening in July, you can find Jan-Marc Cellars wines at wine bars and restaurants around town, or visit Baker every Saturday and Sunday at ground zero — the driveway at 2110 N. Ainsworth Street, from noon to 4 p.m. (503) 341-4531.