This new hybrid wine bar, tap room, and bottle shop in uptown Phoenix quietly opened on August 24 on Camelback Road near Central Avenue. It promises to be a “space for good times,” according to Mike Fasel, who co-owns it with his wife, Kate Fasel.
The idea to open a bar stemmed from “a love of the liquid, whether it’s wine or beer,” Mike says, combined with a desire to create a space for friends and family, the neighborhood, and the community.
However, Mike adds, “Everybody has a robust wine selection and robust beer selection.” They wanted that, plus “elements that exist in a local bar or neighborhood bar, with shuffleboard, darts, live music, TVs for sports.”
The bar will also will feature rotating art exhibits with pieces for sale. According to Mike, 100 percent of the proceeds will go to the artist.
Small bites and snacks will be sold on-site, along with food from a rotation of food trucks. The bar itself doesn't have a kitchen, so patrons can bring in anything they like.
The nearly 2,000-square-foot space has a chill lounge area with sofas, a concrete-top bar, a smattering of high-tops, and a communal table made of sycamore planks that a friend of Mike’s created.
“My dad was sad to let them go," she says, "but excited we were doing something with them."
Though the list will change regularly, the Fasels — who are from Tucson and now live five minutes from their business — are big on promoting natural and local purveyors. Most of the wines they carry are from smaller distributors, and several are from Arizona. Look for wines from the likes of Dos Cabezas and Sand Reckoner, beer from Goldwater, Mother Road, and Wren House brewing companies, and mead from Superstition Meadery, to name a few. Bulk discounts are offered for beer and wine to go.
The Joy Lush Club has a sommelier, John Rea, on staff who helps curate the wine list, and the goal is for him to lead educational tastings. They’re also hoping to bring in brewers whose products are on tap. Other events will include food trucks on Tuesdays, weekly wine specials and trivia nights, and live music.
“We’d like to have bluegrass brunch," Kate says, explaining plans for weekend food truck appearances. She is also responsible for the bar’s quirky name.
“I used to work at a bar in Tucson and a friend of mine had a drinking club [with the same name] that would meet there,” she says. “And so he gave us permission to use the name for this.”
“I think I have German hops in my blood,” he says.
Kate continues to work as a nurse in the pharmaceutical industry, and she and Mike just had a baby, Greta, in August, who joins her brother, Wolfgang, 5.
“We were betting each other which baby was going to be born first: the bottle shop or my baby,” Kate says. “She [Greta] won by about a week.”
A grand opening celebration, complete with beer and wine specials, evening food trucks, and live music will be held on Friday, September 16 from 4 p.m. to midnight, and Saturday, September 17 from 1 p.m. to midnight. So far, plans include surf rock band Puerto from San Diego playing both nights starting at 7 p.m., and Phoenix jazz guitarist Pete Pancrazi playing from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday.
The Joy Lush Club
24 West Camelback Road, Units D and E