Every Man A King Distillery
The Revenir, The Bottoms and The Cotton Street Club are headliners
Tony Simpson, chief operations officer, said that phase one of the project is nearing completion. Phase one includes demolition, new walls, floors and floor joists, and a new roof. He said Wieland Construction, the contractor on the project, expects phase one to be complete in mid-November, barring any unforeseen delays.
“Right now, it’s about making the building sound,” Simpson said. “That’s complete with the roof going on.”
Phase two of the project is finishing the building out to completion, including the courtyard and the new distillery building. Simpson said that progress is on target and scheduled to be completed in March.
Upon completion, Every Man a King Distillery will include the distillery; The Revenir, a modern French restaurant; a speakeasy called The Bottoms; a 5,000-squarefoot event space called The Cotton Street Club; and a courtyard for entertaining. Dr. Andrew Larson, co-owner of Every Man a King with his wife, Dr. Lindsey Pennington, said he is glad to see his vision coming together.
“We haven’t changed the vision for the space,” Larson said. “The concept has stayed the same with the entertainment spaces.”
One thing that has changed from the original concept is the plan for the third floor of the building. The original plan was to lease the space to one business for commercial offices. But now the plan calls for a few dedicated offices for lease and open space for people to come and go as they need.
While construction plans move forward, David Alexander, head distiller and production director, is experimenting with recipes for Every Man a King’s distilled spirits — vodka, gin, absinthe, bourbon and immature (unaged) whiskey. He also is pursuing federal review and approval for the labels, bottles and other branding components of the distillery’s offerings.
“Things so far have been smooth running,” Alexander said. “One good thing about being early to their game is that we are building relationships, so there should be no hiccups down the road.”
Chefs Allison Gras and Brad Jones are preparing for The Revenir’s opening with several events showcasing their food.
“It’s gone really well,” Larson said. “The reception has been overwhelming at everything from the Food Prize dinner to Fete on the Farms. It has allowed the chefs to fine-tune what they are planning to offer this spring.”
Simpson said he plans to host a job fair to fill staff positions as the opening draws nearer. And a team from Proprietors, LLC, will help train the staff. According to the company’s website, Proprietors is a Los Angeles-based consultancy dedicated to “three core areas: building world-class, cocktail-centric beverage programs for clients; consulting on flavors, formulations, strategy, marketing and branding for the beverage industry; and managing Proprietors, LLC, partner-owned bars.”
“We are consulting with them to design our bars, create our menus, even write operating procedures,” Simpson said. “And they will come in and train staff for two weeks. Our staff will have the bartenders and mixologists professionally trained before we open the doors. We are the first to use them in this area.”
Simpson said Every Man a King also will be the first area business to deploy an alldigital valet parking service. “Parking will not be an issue,” he said.
Larson said his enthusiasm has grown as he sees the project taking shape.
“I am just as excited as I was when we first talked (about it),” he said. “I can’t wait to show it off.”