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Greens open BarVino on High St.


Nestled in downtown Jefferson City is a new destination for wine aficionados and those who appreciate good alcohol and good food.

BarVino, a wine bar just three blocks from the Capitol, opened its doors the first week of December. Without any advertising, it is already turning into a hot spot in the downtown atmosphere. 

Boasting a full bar, there are 200 bottles of wine on the list along with eight beers on tap, roughly 20 bottled beers, and a goal of offering 50 bourbons and 50 scotches. Also available are a variety of signature cocktails. 

The food menu is full of delicious eats that are designed for enhancing the drinking experience. The plan is to eventually add a dessert menu, too.

Matt and Ashley Green undertook the adventure of opening a wine bar in Missouri’s Capital because they saw an unmet need. 

“There was absolutely no place to go in Jefferson City to have a nice glass of wine, it is as simple as that,” said Matt Green. 

He discovered the location, 204 East High Street, simply by walking down the street and looking in the window. Initially, they had another location in mind, but it fell through. They just started talking to the owner of the current building and everything worked out.

They renovated the space to fit their vision and the atmosphere they were going for. 

“We did about half of all the work in here that you see,” said Green. “We did the floors, we built the bar, the bar shelves, the tables, we did the painting, the decor — well, there is no decor yet, but it is coming.”

He noted that they plan to have pictures of the Capitol — the grand staircase and the two chambers — to adorn the walls along with still shots on consignment from local artists. 

Green consulted two of the “coolest cocktail bars” in Columbia to help write the cocktail program. Flyover and Barred Owl were integral in designing the cocktail menu and designing and executing the food menu, he said. 

All of the meat is coming from mid-Missouri and almost 95 percent is coming from the Barred Owl Butcher in Columbia. 

The centerfold of BarVino offers 200 bottles of wine for guests to choose from. Green noted he has been in the wine industry for a long time and believes they have a group of people educated in the industry to have a really great selection.

“We want to do beverages really, really well and serve the food that makes the beverages better. We are not a restaurant, but you can eat dinner here,” said Green.

MUST EAT: Whipped goat cheese

MUST DRINK: Lightning Rod of Negativity (champagne-based cocktail), Thank You For Smoking (our guest described it as a “polished” margarita)

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This piece is featured in the January 2019 Missouri Times Magazine.