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Walking into Ambonnay is like walking into a very small, very posh party. David Speer’s 20-seat Champagne bar in the Olympic Mills building (also home to the flagship Olympic Provisions) is decked out with sparkling chandeliers, mirror mosaics, gold walls, glittering panels of wallpaper, and a list of bubbly that will make any Champagne lover ready to sit and stay a while. The comparisons to a glass of sparkling wine are almost too easy given Ambonnay’s glitz and glamor, and the overall effect is an enveloping warmth and convivial atmosphere. On our first visit, individual parties around the bar chimed in on discussions of sparkling rosé, the need for more vegetarian eateries in Portland, and the great prices on Speer’s menu. In short, the space is less a spot for a quiet, romantic date and more a salon for like-minded sippers with a penchant for the good stuff.

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