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Garland Theater’s little bar, Bon Bon, is back; spirits still to come

Jasmine Barnes, part-owner of the Garland Theater, holds cleaning supplies as she pauses for a photo on May 21, 2020. Barnes is revamping the menu of the adjoining Bon Bon bar  (TYLER TJOMSLAND/The Spokesman-Review)
By Megan Dhein For The Spokesman-Review

After a hiatus of nearly five months, Bon Bon reopened its doors in late April. The bar was temporarily shuttered as ownership of the adjoining Garland Theater changed hands. The bar’s hours are 4-10 p.m., seven days a week.

Though they currently can only serve beer and wine, co-owner Jasmine Barnes said they hope to have their spirits license by June.

Once that happens, Barnes said, “we’re kind of going straight into what we were before. Just focusing on being able to make the classic cocktails, our large whiskey selection and then a menu comprised of original creations from our bartending staff.”

In the meantime, Barnes has found ways to fancy up beer and wine.

“We are kind of toying with wine-based products that we could convert into something that’s like a cocktail,” Barnes said. “A lot of them are sparkling wine-based just because the bubbles elevate it a little bit. We’re working on other things utilizing port.

“We’re gonna be trying to make some nonalcoholic options.”

Barnes said once they get the spirits license, they’ll likely keep the nonalcoholic cocktails so people can continue to have that option. Bon Bon’s food menu is simplified, consisting of mostly theater fare, but she encourages people to go to any of the restaurants in the neighborhood and bring their food into Bon Bon. Monday night trivia has also returned.

“Pretty much expect the same,” Barnes said. “You’re gonna see your same bartenders. … I think my newest one has been here for almost two years. So, it’s the same people, same customers, same vibe just … we were closed for a little bit.”

Barnes had been the general manager of both the theater and bar, but when Katherine Fritchie sold the Garland, Barnes joined the ownership team, alongside Chris Bovey and Tyler Arnold. The change in ownership prompted the team to file for new alcohol licenses.

As far as how she feels about this transition?

“I love this place more than anything,” Barnes said. “My customers have become some of my closest friends. My staff is amazing – they’re all coming back. It just feels like a home away from home. Honestly, I’m actually here probably more than I’m home.”