Libby Wunderlich's human baby is due July 13th. Her business baby is due July 12th.
Yup. It's cutting it close. But Bar Ware and the juice bar, Juice Brothers
, is scheduled to open next week.
Both establishments are side by side in Phase II of 266 Lofts building at 276 South Front. They are just north of Gus's on the same side, across from Old Dominick.
David Boone (Memphis Pizza Cafe) will act as general manager.
Wunderlich has worked in the restaurant business since she was in high school, both front of house and back-office-type jobs. She says she felt like it was time to do something on her own.
"There's still a big learning curve, though," she says. "I'm still learning a lot."
Inside, there are leather couches, nice rugs, and big round tables. It's got a clubhouse feel, with a masculine vibe. It's definitely a place you can settle in and hang out.
Wunderlich says that she was going for comfortable, something that harkened back to old style bars. Natalie Lieberman, who did work on The Liquor Store and the new hotel at the train station, helped her with the interior design.
Next door, the juice bar is the polar opposite in terms of styling. It's bright and pristine.
Juice Brothers was founded by a friend of Wunderlich's. She says this friend, who is also a fashion designer, went to Amsterdam and noticed there weren't a lot of juice bars there, so she started one and the company has grown from there.
Juice Brothers will offer a number of juices, tonics, "mylks and brews," waters, shots, and smoothies. As for food, Wunderlich is envisioning a grab-and-go section with salads and wraps and protein bites.
Bar Ware's food will have a healthier bent as well. The focus will be on shareable plates using seasonal ingredients.
According to Kevin Quinnell (Itta Bena, Southern Social), chef at Bar Ware, they plan to have health conscious salads and sandwiches, deviled eggs, charcuteries boards, and more upscale dishes. Nothing fried.
"It's food that's not to be expected from a bar, but not pretentious," he says.
Jacob Leonard (Second Line) is heading the bar. He says he plans to craft cocktails taking advantage of the juice bar. He promises that these cocktails will be good but won't take 10 minutes to make.
"It won't be too fancy," he vows, "but yummy."
Wunderlich says that plans for the bar predated the baby. "That's just how life goes," she says.
Tuesday-Saturday 7 a.m.-6 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Tuesday-Thursday 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
Friday-Saturday 11 a.m.- midnight
Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.