Austinites (and visitors) have a new destination for those looking to pick up grocery goods, a six-pack of beer or an espresso from a bike-through window: The Wet Whistle, taking up residence in an old convenience store building on a busy and infamous corner of East Austin.
We've been watching this building, located at Chicon and MLK, transform from slightly blighted structure to colorful and intriguing business. Wet Whistle's owners Jon Lawrence and Jenn Daly have turned this space into a place to grab local and craft beers, wine, nonalcoholic beverages, chocolate, tea, coffee, flowers, artisan breads, pastries, vegan treats, gluten-free options, groceries and organic dairy products, as well as organic produce. They'll also have a clever and completely Austin-propriate bike-through lane for coffee and pastries.
Beyond just the cool factor, we're enjoying the punk-y, warm industrial, vintage look of this space, and can't help but think this would look great in a home kitchen. Stealable details include the color palette (owners unfortunately do not remember the color names, but we love that caramel brown and that jewel-toned blue) and lining windows with shelves (kind of blocks the light, but adds a lot of drama, not to mention storage). We love the details of old crystal chandeliers mixed with wallpapered walls with colorful and graphic band posters. We enjoy the weird but wonderful vintage accessory and furniture finds and just love how it all kind of feels like this little well-designed cave we wouldn't mind recreating in a small kitchen.
Wet Whistle will also sport a small bulk section and a bicycle-repair section including inner tubes, patch kits and bike lights. A powerful who's who of Austin creatives had a hand in creating this space's look; Jenn and Jon both tackled the interior and exterior design. Joe Swec did the logo and the Austin Metal Authority, Colby Brinkman and Michael Alford, did all metal work. Aldo Bohm, of Avalvo Industries, was Jon's right hand man in woodworking.
(Images: Ariele Baragona, via The Wet Whistle Facebook page, and with permission)