Business

Elevated Aprés

Sweet Peaks and Wild Coffee owners recently opened Stumptown, a new restaurant and wine bar in downtown Whitefish

By Maggie Dresser
Owners Sam Dauenhauer and Marissa Keenan at Stumptown, a ski-themed wine bar and restaurant in downtown Whitefish on Dec. 30, 2021. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

In the former Stumptown Marketplace, ski pole chandeliers, ski archways, a bra tree and local snow ghost photography line the inside of downtown Whitefish’s newest restaurant and wine bar.

Entrepreneurs Marissa Keenan and Sam Dauenhauer, owners of Sweet Peaks Ice Cream and Wild Coffee Company, opened their newest business venture, Stumptown, in early December as an ode to Whitefish’s ski culture.

“I think its’s an opportunity to home in on something that’s a big part of Whitefish,” Kennan said. “This is something we found works for our other businesses, it ties into the different elements of taking a concept and creating an idea and community around it.”

Keenan calls Stumptown a three-pronged business, with a retail space selling wine bottles and other items in the front of the building, the restaurant and wine bar taking up most of the roughly 4,500 square-foot space and the Snowbunny Lounge in the back. A “Stumptown Ski Pass” will be available for 99 members for $500 and will include a bottle club and wine discounts.

While Stumptown opened in early December, the lounge will open in mid-January, serving brunch Friday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. with a menu including waffles, pastries, espresso, mimosa flights and frozés, or frozen rosé wine.

Keenan describes the menu in the wine bar and restaurant as “elevated après” with a charcuterie board, Flathead Lake trout, burrata, s’mores and Sweet Peaks Ice Cream. There’s also rotating beverage list of sparkling, white and red wines from France, New Zealand and domestic wineries in Washington and Martha Stoumen Winery in California. Canned alcoholic seltzers and beer on tap is also offered at the wine bar.

“We have different labels and vineyards who have a story,” Keenan said. “Everyone has their own taste in wine, but we also want to expand people’s palettes a little bit. It’s the idea of what we did with Sweet Peaks, having some really tried and true favorites is really important.”

Keenan says their former ventures have helped build a business platform and a hospitality connection while allowing an opportunity to weave in artistic themes into their newest business.

“Sweet Peaks has afforded us such an opportunity to reinvest in the Whitefish community,” Keenan said.

With a bunny selfie station, a champagne ski (a champagne version of a shotski) and retired ski equipment ranging from wooden skis from the 1940s to neon 1980s straight skis to recently broken ski poles, the wine bar and restaurant encapsulates the Whitefish ski culture.

Stumptown will further support the ski industry by hosting local fundraisers, parties and ski movies in the future while also donating a portion of profits to Protect Our Winters, a nonprofit climate change organization.

Stumptown also allowed Dauenhauer an artistic outlet in the building, where he hand built and welded many of the decorations and he created a “Pray for Snow” painting right next to the wine bar’s bra and Mardi Gras tree. Keenan says they are also collecting photos for a family vacation wall and more art installations will gradually appear throughout the building.

“There’s things we keep adding and so the space is more than just food and wine, it’s a fun experience,” Keenan said. “There’s enough space to be casual and you feel like you’re very much in Whitefish. You can come in with your ski boots and your après gear but you can also come here in your sequins and have a nice glass of wine.”

Stumptown will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. with expanded hours in the future.

For more information, visit @stumptownwinebar and @snowbunnywf on Instagram.

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