Downtown’s newest mixed-use development, The Avenue, is nearing completion and ready to announce its first retail tenant: Church Street Purveyor.
An expansion of Church Street Wine Shoppe, Purveyor will feature wine in addition to a full bourbon bar, a selection of local craft beer, traditional craft drinks, and tapas. But not just any tapas, each dish will be strategically crafted to pair with wine or bourbon, creating a unique dining experience that owners Stephanie and Matt Mell are excited to bring to Huntsville.
“We’ve always had food here with our wine,” said Stephanie. “But with Purveyor we’ll be able to take the food and wine pairings to another level.”
Born organically from the needs and desires of their clientele, Stephanie and Matt see this as a natural expansion for them, but after only being open for 19 months, the idea of expanding already was a bit daunting at first. “In the beginning we were like, “no.” I mean we had just figured it all out, I finally knew how to do it right, so the idea of expanding already was just crazy,” said Stephanie.
“The biggest mistake that small businesses make is that they expand too quickly, and we’re very aware of that,” explained Stephanie, however after getting to know The Avenue developers Charlie & Sasha Sealy, Stephanie and Matt were inspired to jump in and join the project as well. “I think we just believe so much in what Charlie and Sasha are doing and the vision they have, and that downtown is growing so much and getting to be a part of that on the ground floor is so exciting. We just loved it, we loved where it’s located, we loved who owns it, we loved the space, and we loved that there are apartments above us and we knew we just had to be a part of that.”
And while there has always been food and wine at Church Street Wine Shoppe, the addition of a bourbon bar is a new expansion for their Purveyor location.
“Again this came from our customers asking us,” Stephanie said. “There is such a level of intellect in wine and art and I think bourbon is right there on that same level of sophistication. I think it’s really interesting how many people translate wine into bourbon, there are flavors, and there are flavor profiles that they like to hit, it’s so similar. Of course it doesn’t hurt that Matt loves bourbon as well. That is his go to drink if he’s not having a glass of wine.”
At only 1,900 square feet including a bottle shop and full kitchen, the new location will be only slightly bigger than Church Street’s current space.
“One of the things our customers have always commented on that they love about us is that we’re not huge,” Stephanie said. “They like the fact that we’re small and there’s this homey, quaint feeling to the experience and we don’t want to lose that. So even though we’re expanding, it’s still small.”
According to Matt and Stephanie, “the new space will have a very warm and fuzzy industrial feeling, not cold, but comfy, so we think that will be really unique and interesting.” But what Stephanie feels will set the place apart from anything else is herself and Matt and how they connect with their patrons.
“I’d like to believe that difference between this and anywhere else one could go is that you get Matt and me,” she said. “And even though we’ll have the two locations now, one of us will be there everyday, and you’ll be able to get to know us or someone else who works there, and we will know your name, we’ll know that you’re grandma just had a birthday and where your kids are going to college and I think that is what we bring that makes Church Street so special.”
Church Street Purveyor plans to open it’s doors to the public in late December of this year or early January of next. To stay up to day with their progress, and special announcements, be sure and follow them online here on: Facebook & Twitter!
For more information on Church Street Purveyor. Be sure and check out WHNT’s TV coverage on the announcement HERE and more from AL.com HERE.
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