WE CAME, WE TASTED, AND IT WAS YUMMY

Ask Corey Albert why there is an orange stripe running down the middle of the concrete floor at his nifty new Yummy Wine Bar & Bistro in Seaside, and he will leap to his feet to pull a photo off the wall. The photo shows how the chic Yummy space was once a parking garage for the Seaside Fire Station’s fire engines, and it makes you appreciate how far this space has come since Corey transformed it into Seaside’s hippest eatery when it opened on April 20, 2007.

“I knew one day that I wanted to have my own little café,” he said. “We’re a full-blown wine bar and a full-blown bistro. There’s nothing like this in the county.”

Atop that original floor, and within the exposed-brick walls of the old firehouse are now a two-sided fireplace, orange leather furniture and fabric sofas for lounging, and bistro tables done in blonde, wood block. There are lava lamps on shelves, and when you order food in the sofa section, it is delivered on the kind of old, tinny tray tables that we ate from while watching Lucy on TV in the ‘60s. I loved those tray tables.

The food by chef Thomas Morisette is upscale and elegant, with entrees like roasted lamb loin served with a cherry-port demi glace, or volcano spiced ahi tuna served on a stack of sesame rice and cucumber salad. Artisan cheeses, marinated olives and a cured meat plate are available for light bites.

To this, Albert – who was once a rescue swimmer with the U.S. Coast Guard, and then owned a pizza restaurant in Cannon Beach for many years – adds a selection of some seventy Northwest and International wines, and delights in creating flights for tasting. To that end, I got quickly familiar with a selection of Cabernet franc pours from Oregon, California and Washington.

It is a combination that would fit right in with a trendy Portland neighborhood, or a Willamette Valley wine community. “I wanted a place to go and socialize with friends that is different,” said Corey. “And here it is.”

Different, sure, but what’s the word we’re looking for? It’s on the tip of our tongue…oh yes, it’s yummy. Yummy says it all.