Tahoe’s new Revive cafe brings building back to life
Revive Coffee & Wine is true to its name. The cafe, which opened June 25, is built with many repurposed items. Found on the wall in Revive are windows from an old house in Zephyr Cove, and doors from the same house were used to make tables. The entire bar was handmade in Tahoe, and the building itself used to be a tasting room for Picchetti Winery.
The name and theme — Revive — also reflects owner Robin Bender’s journey over the past few years. Three years ago her husband lost his battle with cancer, and she views this cafe as her own personal revival.
“It’s like my coming back to life,” she said.
When South Tahoe Standup Paddle moved into the old winery at the beginning of April, it was not large enough to fill the whole building. Bender, who is also chief financial officer of South Tahoe SUP, decided to start a coffee shop and wine bar in that space.
“I love good coffee and good wine. It just seemed like the sensible thing to do,” Bender said.
Revive is the first place in South Lake Tahoe to serve “nitro” coffee, a nitrogen-infused cold brew that has a smooth taste. It’s also the only location on the South Shore to sell the Mexico Zaachila blend of espresso. Decaf espresso was added to the menu earlier this week.
“We’re not a traditional coffee shop. We’re trying to create something different,” Bender said.
Another unique aspect of Revive is its lack of Wi-Fi. Bender explained this decision stemmed from her desire to promote human interaction between people who visit the cafe, which represents another faction of the cafe’s “revival” theme.
“There’s something to be said about spending time with someone. We’re reviving the art of one-on-one conversation,” Bender added.
Revive also serves food items ranging from upscale pastries to paninis, salads and hand-crafted charcuterie. Sometimes staff even smokes tri-tip steaks.
“Our goal is to try bringing something nice and upscale to this area, and we want to be like nobody else in town,” Bender said.
The cafe offers front and back patios with seating for people to relax and enjoy their food and drinks. The back patio can be reserved for private events.
Coffee prices range from approximately $1 to $5. A glass of house wine is $7, but there are other options that cost up to $15 per glass.
According to Bender, roughly 98 percent of the wine is locally sourced. Starting Monday, July 18, Revive will begin a Monday special, selling $6 glasses of house wine between 5-9 p.m.
“This is an absolute honor and privilege [to own the cafe],” Bender added. “I’ve never done anything like this.”
For more information, visit the cafe at 3135 Harrison Ave. or online at http://www.revivecoffeewine.com.