Contributed photo
Cole Sisson (left) and Shea Sasan (right).

Contributed photo Cole Sisson (left) and Shea Sasan (right).

New wine bar and café coming to Orcas Island

Submitted by Roots Orcas Island.

This summer, Cole Sisson and Shea Sasan will open the doors to their new business in the heart of Eastsound, on the corner of Main Street and North Beach Rd. The concept is modeled after some of their favorite spaces in Europe where one can enjoy a full range of experiences throughout the day. There will be something for everyone starting with espresso and toasts in the morning, moving to lunch bowls and paninis in the afternoon, and transitioning to a wine bar with a comprehensive cheese and charcuterie program at night.

“The island has been in need of this concept for a while and Cole and I have discussed it since moving back home to the island,” said Sasan. “Growing up here and watching the current trends, we realize how important it is to have businesses owned and operated by natives who understand the community.”

The space will be a cultural hub featuring winemaker dinners, guest chefs, cooking classes, and room for wedding parties, family gatherings and reunions. The opening team includes Chef Madden Surbaugh as operations consultant, Christina McFadden from Gensler as the interior designer and Darlin Gray Worldwide as the branding agency.

Sisson and Sasan have begun a Kickstarter in order to give the community, and other parties, an opportunity to get involved. You can learn more by visiting the site at www.rootsorcasisland.com.

The two friends were raised on the east side of the island. Their friendship began in elementary school and they were even homeschooled together for a few years. Throughout high school, they worked at local businesses including Bilbo’s Festivo, Teezer’s and Christina’s. They graduated together from Orcas Island High School vowing to return home someday.

Sisson moved to Seattle after high school where he studied political science at the University of Washington. He has spent his career in the wine and restaurant industry as a sommelier, importer and educator in Vail, Las Vegas, Spain and Seattle. He currently owns Doe Bay Wine Company in Eastsound and The Orcas Project Winery. Sasan’s path took him to Southern California where he built a career in luxury hospitality and real estate. He moved back to the island with his wife and three daughters in 2019. He has expanded his successful real estate career to Orcas Island.

Sisson and Sasan say they are excited to use their combined experiences to present an expression of their deep roots in this island and devotion to the community. Roots Orcas Island is a culmination of their friendship, journey, and return home.