Something Else to Love

The Wine Bar at Work the Metal is coming soon

Story by Mariah Kline

Photos by Andrea Hutchinson

Since opening in 2003, Work the Metal has become Butchertown’s go-to spot for finding the perfect gift for any recipient (this writer recently found amazing gifts for a soon-to-be 3-year-old boy, a 30-year-old friend and a 65-year-old dad). The space that started out at just 400 square feet has now reached a staggering 13,000, with new products and innovations always in the works.

On June 3, owners Jack Mathis and Andy Blieden celebrated the store’s 15th anniversary by offering 15 percent off of every purchase for an entire week. Now, they’re adding another reason to love the massive shop: a beverage bar that will serve alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks as well as tasty bites. 

“It’s a big place and you’ve got a lot to look at,” says Mathis. “The idea is as you’re shopping, you get kind of thirsty, so you can come in and get a glass of wine and sit for a few minutes.”

Beverages on tap will include wine, champagne, beer and sodas. The team is also working with local brand Red Hot Roasters to bring coffee to the lineup. For snacks, they’re bringing in a charcuterie tray curated by Scarlet’s Bakery that will pair perfectly with their selection of wine. Bourbon Barrel Foods will provide pimento cheese, beer cheese, chips and a snack mix.

Current employees of Work the Metal who have experience bartending or in the dining industry will take the lead on serving and preparing food. Offerings of spirits and snacks will rotate based on the season, with lighter options this summer followed by heavier and more festive flavors in the fall and winter.

Saturday mornings will be extra enticing as pastries from Scarlet’s Bakery and $1 mimosas will await customers.

“We are always looking for new ideas and just an overall better shopping experience for people,” says Mathis. “We are really about the experience and wanting you to have a good time.”

“We want it to be social,” affirms Blieden. “That’s what we want: a place where families and friends get together. People love to shop together and they like to explore.”

The Wine Bar will also serve as a small event space, ideal for baby or wedding showers, birthday parties and other functions.

Mathis and Blieden plan to open the bar by the end of this month and look forward to continued growth in the years to come.

“I think the key for the past 15 years has been consistency in growing,” says Blieden. “We’ve added the Wine Bar and have expanded, and there’s no reason why we can’t keep doing that for the next 15 years. We are purely Louisville. We are 100 percent Louisville, and I think people really respond positively to that. People support us because they know that we are an extension of the city and an extension of them.

“Every time we’ve expanded, Jack has been the visionary behind creating the space,” continued Blieden. “He’s marrying the retail experience with the architecture, and it is a work of art. That’s what’s so fun as his partner, is to see his ideas and then see what it looks like when he’s done.” VT

The Wine Bar at Work the Metal

1201 Story Ave.