“From start to finish, they will be encountering the owner that put this thing together.”
This Friday, a former church in Rankin will open as the city’s newest wine lounge.
Mary’s Vine is the passion project of the Stasinowsky family, Pittsburgh transplants by way of California, that purchased the church in February 2018 and have been renovating the building together ever since.
“It had been empty for nine years, and it just looked like it was collapsing in on itself,” Cheryl Stasinowsky told Good Food Pittsburgh earlier this year.
After months of attention, the restaurant and lounge will begin serving guests this Friday, August 30, at 5:00 P.M.
“We really love her,” says Stasinowsky of the former church. “She’s really beautiful. I look forward to everyone enjoying her.”
While Mary’s Vine is both a restaurant and bar, the entire experience is centered around the wine menu, curated by Cheryl’s son, Jordan, a passionate wine connoisseur.
The list has 350 bottles, with 74 available by the glass. Every wine on the menu was expertly selected by the Mary’s Vine team.
“For six to eight months, we all tried over 2,200 wines to put the list together,” says Stasinowsky.
The wine list includes wine from “every region in the world,” and is organized via an iPad app designed to help patrons navigate the menu and narrow down their preferences. Guests will be able to save their favorites to their personal account to remember for later visits. The app can also recommend similar varietals.
Once ordered, the wine is poured tableside into the specific stemware designed for that type of wine.
“You will have the glass that was made for the wine you are drinking,” says Stasinowsky. “It really makes all the difference.”
And, as an effort to encourage guests to order outside of their comfort zone, customers may sample the wine and decide if they like it before purchasing a full glass.
“We want people to branch out,” says Stasinowsky. “You can try a sample and you don’t like it, that’s ok.”
Mary’s Vine also has a carefully curated menu of cocktails, which are made tableside and served in the specific glassware intended for the drink.
All beverages designed to pair with the food menu, which spearheaded by Executive Chef Alexander Fitz, previously of Willows in Beaver County.
The opening menu includes dishes like Rosemary Lamb Chops, Jumbo Lump Crabmeat stuffed Prawns, Petite Filet Mignon Bourguignon, Mediterranean Platter, Pork Belly BLT Sliders, Cheese Platter for One, and Single Serving Caviar.
The dessert program will be handled by Terriberriez Sweet Boutique, located nearby in North Versailles, and includes chocolate covered strawberries and cheesecake.
Another important aspect of the experience is the entertainment. The restaurant will have live music every night from 7:00 – 10:00 P.M., which was part of the original “wine lounge” vision for the lounge.
“He just said, ‘We can make it a wine lounge, and local artists can hang their art on the walls, and we can play jazz music,’” Stasinowsky told Good Food Pittsburgh earlier this year, describing her son’s idea for the space.
Mary’s Vine will be open 5:00 P.M. – Midnight, Wednesday through Sunday. The restaurant does not take reservations, but does offer free valet parking (which they encourage you to use).
The Stasinowskys expect it to be an experience unlike anything else in Pittsburgh.
“It’s the right glass, with the right wine, with the right food, in the right atmosphere, with your friends,” says Stasinowsky. “You can’t lose.”
More information can be found online.
Mary’s Vine (211 Kenmawr Avenue, Rankin)