Credit Shawn Bermudez for knowing what the residents of Montrose want. The clothing store mogul and hospitality industry veteran has three properties, sports bar Royal Oak, divey Boondocks and Mexican-inspired Pistolero's, that have all found an audience, and all are different enough from each other to have their individual fans.
"We built a place we would like to hang out at," Bermudez says. Bermudez says.
Now, after over two years of development, Bermudez opened his fourth concept last week. Stone's Throw takes a slightly direction from Bermudez's previous projects in a couple of ways. First, it lacks an obvious theme in favor of a more general "neighborhood bar" feel. Second, Bermudez has enlisted longtime Royal Oak general manager Hunter Montgomery as his partner.
When I suggest it has a more "grown up" feel than some of his other concepts, Bermudez agrees. "Each place I've done is what I'm into at the time," he says. "We built a place we would like to hang out at."
"We took everything apart and built this bad boy," Bermudez tells CultureMap as he looks around the space. Unlike previous projects where Bermudez says he was able to salvage certain elements, nothing remains from the space's history as a clothing store. Even the windows had to be upgraded to a new, sturdier spec to meet the city's guidelines for restaurants.
Two-story back bar
The interior design began with Bermudez's desire for a two-story back bar and went from there, with each design element then dictating the next one that followed. The first decision brought a 17-foot tall back bar with a Gothic cathedral-style top that dominates the 1,600-square-foot downstairs.
Since the bar had enough parking to allow for a little more room, Bermudez made the decision to build second-story Juliet balconies. "I've never seen a bar here with Juliet balconies," he explains. Three small balconies provide a way for patrons to look at the action below, and a lounge area with three connected booths can accommodate separate groups or one really big one.
"I've never seen a bar here with Juliet balconies," he explains.
"I knew we wanted a marble bar top," Bermudez adds, and so Stone's Throw has one, along with a copper beer system that houses 16 taps of Texas craft beer. Booths and a community table round out the downstairs seating, leaving plenty of room to stand.
The upstairs booths and community table also dictate the bar's signature drink: Sharable punch bowls. Choose from a half (6 drinks, $38) or full bowl (15 drinks, $68); those prices are discounted to $28 and $50 on Wednesdays, making them a particularly good value for a group of friends looking to have a good time.
In addition to beer and punch, Stone's Throw features a tidy selection of wines (six white, six red and eight champagnes). Royal Oak bartender Caleb Gutierrez developed the cocktail menu, which features housemade ginger beer created by chef Matthew Pak, who is Bermudez's partner in the Koagie Hots and Golden Grill food trucks. Pak also contributes the bar's only food items: spicy mixed nuts and an addictive bourbon caramel popcorn.
Stone's Throw is open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. every day. Happy hour specials run from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.