Being able to sit on a patio basking in the sun while sipping on a cocktail and taking in the city’s vast landscape is a year-round perk of living in New Mexico.
The Wells Park distillery, which opened in the winter of 2018, has started construction on a two-story patio that will wrap around the southern and eastern portions of the building. Chief financial officer and co-owner Donna Salas said they are hoping to be done by mid-April but construction could span into May. Restrictions brought about by the spread of COVID-19, including a temporary ban on indoor dining and activities, prompted many businesses to reassess their outdoor patio situation. However, that was not the case for Hollow Spirits, Salas said.
“When we started the business, we put together a specific five-year business plan and a two-story patio was part of that,” she said. “It got delayed, of course, with COVID … everything we planned is breaking loose now.”
They broke ground on the patio project in late January. Alex Volek, who handles marketing for Hollow Spirits, said the goal was to do the work when the patio was not being used as much and that the project will double the outdoor space. The patio will face the Sandia Mountains and also give people a view of the city landscape. The business sits adjacent to the railroad tracks so people have the opportunity to watch the trains from the patio as they pass through Albuquerque.
“With the train there, nothing is going up to obstruct that view,” he said. “It’s going to be gorgeous at night and we are going to do tons of events.”
He said that people call frequently to inquire when it will open. Salas said people are just happy to be out with other people.
“They want to join the community,” she said. “They want to be outside in our beautiful weather. People love to bask in the sun here. It brings you to this calm we haven’t had in a while. There’s been so much stress on so many people. We hope this patio is going to help people get to that Zen level of ‘I’m one with nature.’ ”
The full menu will not be available upstairs but there will be a portable bar and a new tapas menu for the patio. In addition to a new patio, the distillery recently installed a new 600-gallon still, the biggest it has owned yet.
Hollow Spirits is located at 1324 First St. NW. Visit hollowspirits.com for more information or call 505-433-2766.