Building a Vineyard

Published 12:00 am Sunday, September 30, 2007

Italian cuisine coming downtown

By Coy O’neal

The Selma Times-Journal

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A taste of Italy is coming soon to Selma.

The owners of the Vineyard will be opening a restaurant to accompany the pub on Water Ave.

The Vineyard restaurant will feature authentic Italian cuisine and original d&cor. Restaurant co-owner Ruth Lee said the goal is to be open before Christmas. The project has already been underway for several months.

Owner and landlord David Hurlbut said the color scheme is dark, with espresso walls, sun-dried tomato accents and polyurethane flooring.

&8220;We’re using really good stuff,&8221; he said. &8220;Old materials, masonry and pineheart. It’s going to look like an authentic Italian restaurant.&8221; The moulding and accents, which include lighting, the menu board, and the bathroom paneling, were all crafted by hand.

Hurlbut and Lee said one of the most difficult projects to finish was flooring. It took several layers of carpet, and in some places tile, to get to the original floor.

It was Lee who came up with the idea for the restaurant.

Lee, with her husband Daniel, also a co-owner, spent 15 months in Italy while he served in the U.S. Army.

After obtaining a license, the work began. &8220;We painted, stained, cleaned up everything,&8221; Lee said.

To boost profits in the restaurant, Lee said she, along with her husband, daughter-in-law, Beth Lee, and Hurlbut, decided to open a bar as well.

The Vineyard, which opened in the spring of this year, is currently open nightly with the exception of Sunday and Tuesday. The pub features live entertainment, pool tables, Karaoke night, dart tournaments, and theatre seating. Visitors can watch sports on ESPN, and enjoy wings during the Monday Night Football event.

Lee said the Vineyard is getting a new flat screen television this week that will become part of an expanded lounge area at the front of the pub. When the restaurant opens, patrons will have access to

both the pub and restaurant, as well as a courtyard area behind the building.