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Bars where Pete has had a drink

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

#2822 - Bootleggers Cove, Tieton, WA - 7/12/2015

Update: Bootleggers Cove closed in 2016

Bootleggers Cove, Tieton, WA

"Tieton (the name is Yakama for “roaring water,” after the nearby river) was once a bustling agricultural town where Washington’s fruit growers stored their produce before shipping it off to destinations across the continent. As the industry began its decline in the 1970s, the town’s center cleared out, leaving its warehouses and storefronts abandoned. The area was repopulated and culturally transformed by a growing Latino community, which has long been a presence on the region’s farms, but Tieton’s town center became a different kind of cultural outpost after art book publisher Ed Marquand saw the possibility in its aging structures and empty streets while on a bike ride there in 2005." (

Tieton, Washington
The bar pickings in Tieton ("Tie-uh-tun"), population just over a thousand, are few, and in 2015 the first and only choice was Bootleggers Cove. The Cove bar looked like a lazy buddy's unfinished basement hangout, with various signs and posters on the faux wood paneled walls, a mixture of padded chairs, pinball machine and darts. All this is accessed by walking into the cafe in front and through a space that seems to have been unceremoniously smashed through a concrete wall.

County tax records date to the current structure to 1925, but local historians date the Tieton State Bank here from 1919 to 1936, noting that the bank was briefly in another location while the current building was being constructed. The space hosted a blacksmith shop before the bank, and a meat market after. It became the Blue Moon Cafe in 1943, then the Tieton Cafe from 1948 to 2013. Bootleggers Cove cafe started across the street, moved into this building in November 2014 and added a lounge. Alas it would remain here only a few months after my visit, and since May 2016 the space has hosted Fernando's Mexican Food.

902 Wisconsin Ave, Tieton, WA 98947 - (509) 673-0033
Est. 2014 - Building constructed: 1925
Previous bars in this location: None known
Web site: facebook
Reviews: yelp - tripadvisor   

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

October 2020: permanently closed. Then Fernando's came in and they closed.

Don Mateo's is the only place here to have full meals, but no alcohol. Founded 2017 by Francisco and Bessie in a 1920's building. A family place named for their young son Don Mateo. It's on the only historic town square that I know of in Washington. Closes 4 pm or so.