Ever since Grape Escape shut its doors in late June, there has been consistent chatter about what might fill the highly visible storefront at Eighth and Idaho streets. Those seeking answers need look no further than Russ Crawforth, owner of next-door neighbor Pie Hole. Crawforth recently signed a lease on the space, which is in the same building that once housed the iconic Mode department store.
"It's going to be an upscale lounge; we're going to tie in a little bit of the history of the building with the lounge itself," said Crawforth. "It doesn't really have a theme but it's going to be influenced a little bit by some Art Deco."
Though Crawforth was hesitant to give too much away, he said the concept will be called The Mode Lounge--with the old Mode signage featured prominently on the building--and it will undergo a significant remodel.
"The Grape Escape as you know it, it's not going to look anything like that anymore," said Crawforth. "There will not be a kitchen there where there is currently a kitchen. I want to create what I've kind of deemed as a 'micro-kitchen' that's going to be behind the bar."
The micro-kitchen will serve cheese and charcuterie plates along with what Crawforth coyly calls "some really nice appetizers." The place won't be open for lunch and it won't sling food late--Crawforth says the focus will be on cocktails, which will be served until 2 a.m. every night.
"Basically, it's going to be the latest in craft cocktails--there's a lot of new trends out there with ice and with herbs and fresh fruits and vegetables."
Crawforth continued: "It's not a college bar; it's not a pub; we will not have draft beer. It is a lounge. There will be some bottled beers and there will be a nice selection of wines, but I don't want it to be confused with the pub, which is kind of Boise's trend right now."
Crawforth hopes to have the space open by Wednesday, Jan. 1, if not sooner. Check back with Boise Weekly for more details as they develop.