Water Street Wine Bar, the upscale wine & dine haven created by Ray Spencer on the lower level of Birkett Landing on the Keuka Outlet waterfront in Penn Yan, has a new pair of owner-hosts.
Mary Ann and Stefan Lewandowski are relative newcomers to the area, but have made themselves well known in business, civic events, and organizations. Stefan is the manager of Walgreens Drug Store, and serves on the Vision 2020 Committee for downtown improvement. Mary Ann has been an important figure in the development of the Yates Community Center’s programs, and is now the Literacy Volunteers K-Train kindergarten readiness program coordinator. The couple has another enterprise —Pals Car Service and Wine Tours, with a fleet of luxury cars and vans to serve the growing market. They also are raising three children.
It is this kind of positive energy you will find when they greet you at WSWB. The lion’s share of the management will fall to Mary Ann, and with her ready smile and faultless good humor, there couldn’t be a better choice. She assures WSWB regulars that the staff they know and love are staying on, and changes will be minimal, with some additions to the menu and wine lists, and local beers remaining on tap.
The sale was worked out in the last half of 2016, but the transfer of the liquor license didn’t come through until the New Year. To speed matters along for their grand opening under new ownership Jan. 4, Mary Ann spent her birthday — Jan. 3 — driving to the State Liquor Authority office in Buffalo to pick their license up in person, rather than endure further weeks of waiting.
The combination of WSWB and Pal’s Car Service and Wine Tours seems a perfect dovetailing of service; wine tours by day, stopping at the hotels in the evening, and safe driving to places like The Water Street Wine Bar in downtown Penn Yan at night.