After nearly two years of quiet, Blue Lobster Urban Winery is moving ahead with plans to open in Portland, according to Portland Food Map. Details are sparse, but the winery has a placeholder website up. PFM says the location will be a different one than the 61 India St. spot that was originally proposed.
Blue Lobster created a a pretty good media buzz back in February 2012 with its novel concept. It even received City Council approval for liquor and outdoor seating licenses. The microwinery/wine bar from Chris Gamble and Karen Rasmussen planned to import grapes from California, which would then "be de-stemmed, crushed and fermented before the wine is put into oak barrels to age" on site in Portland, according to a story in the Press Herald at the time. Why the project failed to move forward on India Street is unclear, but a Prezi from Gamble from October 2012 shows 54 Danforth St. as a potential alternate site. That location appears to now be occupied by Global Studios, so the new site is not known.
The Prezi shows a few different concept ideas: just a winery, a winery with a small bar and limited menu, and a winery with a full restaurant. Which path this latest incarnation will take remains to be seen.
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· Under Construction: Sweetgrass, Chez Biso, Indian Bazaar, Blue Lobster [PFM]
· 'Urban Winery' Will be Portland's First [PPH]
· BLUW [Prezi]