Rifugio's Country Italian Cuisine

A Farm to Table Culinary Destination

 Rifugio's Country Italian Cuisine is an Eclectic Italian Restorante well worth the drive into the countryside. Just fifteen minutes outside of Bellingham in beautiful Deming, Washington. We source local ingredients use the highest quality products able. It takes time to have a great experience. So sit down relax and enjoy. Our site will lead you through our menu, venues, specials, local events, peoples experiences and stories of food, love and life.

Note: eclectic - deriving ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources. 

Warmth & Love to all.............. Mr. Rifugio

A story from Casey and her affection for Rifugio's

A story from Casey and her affection for Rifugio's

 

"Bear with me as I relay my undying affection for the restaurant that is Rifugio's on Mt. Baker Highway. Of all the beauty there is to love that spans 542 (and I do!), the one unnatural feature I look forward to most is my moment alongside Cafe Rifugio's. Surely, it must be because I have eaten their wonderful food and dined there on my nights back from Baker, but no, before this past Sunday I had never eaten a morsel of their cuisine. Don't get me wrong- I tried! But our schedules never lined up right and I found my face pressed up against the door hoping to catch someone inside past close.

It's certainly a place of its own kind on that highway. My interest was piqued by the name: Rifugio. It reminded me of one of my favorite dumb movie scenes from Night at the Roxbury where Chris Kattan is relaying a story about Emilio Estevez crescendoing into him shouting, "Emilioooo!" Something in my brain could not shake the connection. I became irrationally obsessed with shouting, "Rifuuugiooo" every time I passed it in the car. It got to the point where my friends would know to stop talking mid-sentence because Rifugio's was coming up, and I'd be damned to not yell it from the top of my lungs over their talking. My love grew contagious and others would get excited for me when we got close. Six months of shouting and yet, still, I had not made it inside.

Fast forward to the second weekend in June and I found myself wanting to plant two very sentimental Douglas Fir trees. I had no doubt about where to plant the first, but I was "stumped" as to where I wanted the second. Somewhere special to me, somewhere I could go back to.. and then it hit me: Rifugio's! I finally made it to the restaurant at 9:00pm and had zero hope it would be open..that would be crazy.

I pulled up and despite the obvious vacancy, the OPEN sign still flashed and I saw lights on...Oh. my. God. I didn't bother smashing my face against the door. This time called for a full turn of the knob and lo and behold I was inside Rifugio's! They were definitely closed, but, to my luck, the owner himself was there! I waited not 30 seconds before Richard came out and graciously listened to my very random and definitely weird story about my fondness for his place that I have never truly graced. Before I could finish Richard asks his employee to fire up the fryer and cook some fresh donuts. Needless to say, I was in heaven. Soon after the fresh donuts (which reminded me of the sweet, sugar-coated cousin to hush puppies), Richard is dolling me a fresh cup of espresso and relaying the thoughtful details that go into his beautiful menu at Rifugio's. He speaks of his family, the town, and his background. The food is incredible- I have no doubt. But, more importantly, Rifugio's possesses the most desirable thing of all- passion.

Richard is passionate about the food on the plate and the effects it has on the community. He is not simply an artist, but a pillar of connection in a town where people seemingly hide in the woods between seasons. He wants to bring people together to enjoy the beauty that is the Mt. Baker area and appreciate the life we all choose to nurture here. His heart is in it, and he cares about his impact on others. After guzzling my espresso and licking the remnants of donuts off my fingers, I found myself among the patch of a future garden planting my last Douglas Fir. I have no clue if that tree will survive, for several reasons, but a memory was planted deep in my heart that I won't soon forget. Richard encompasses everything good about this town. I am eternally grateful for his hospitality and willingness to listen to my story and how our journeys connect, even if in the silliest of ways. So, if you're looking for somewhere beautiful to enjoy damn good food, or if you want to watch a Douglas Fir try to grow, or if you want some fresh-to-order donuts while looking at the forest..head to Rifugio's. And if you can't make it in that day, do me a favor and at least yell the name as LOUD as you possibly can.. Until then..

 

RIIFUUUUUUGGIOOOOOOO!"

 

Casey