Eastside Beltline wine bar and bottle shop Hazel Jane’s closes this Saturday, September 5, after less than a year. Beverage director Melissa Davis (Staplehouse) posted the news to Instagram and confirmed the closure to Eater Atlanta via text message early Monday afternoon. It appears the closure is due to financial troubles stemming from the ongoing health crisis.
Located next door to Kevin Gillespie’s Cold Beer on the trail, the bar was named for Hazel Jane Raines — the first Georgia woman to receive her pilot’s license. Raines was a ferry pilot for the British Royal Air Force and a WASP (Woman Airforce Service Pilot) during World War II.
Hazel Jane’s ceased dine-in and patio service in late March and has been operating as takeout only alongside its small wine shop.
In its short time on the Atlanta drinks scene, Davis and her knowledgable crew behind the bar at the Revelator Coffee-backed Hazel Jane’s built up a regular following of wine enthusiasts who came to partake in the nearly 150 wines by the glass, complemented by small plates from chef Brad Morris (Ticonderoga Club, Empire State South).
The lengthy wine list ranged from dusty, old world reds and whites, to skin contacts, sparkling wines, and hard-to-find bottles, along with vermouths and fortified wine selections. Much like a wine shop tracks customer purchases, wines sipped at Hazel Jane’s were tracked via a “passport” for patrons to refer back to on future visits.
“Hazel Jane’s had absolutely been building momentum before the pandemic hit, but the reality is that there’s no way to run a wine bar if we can’t safely let people inside. HJ was built as a gathering spot,” Revelator president Josh Owen told Eater. “It only worked if people could gather. There was never going to be a way to make the economics work only doing takeout and retail wine.”
View this post on Instagram
My darlings, It is with a very heavy heart that I have to inform you all that we have decided to permanently close Saturday, September 5th. We cannot thank you all enough for your support! What an amazing adventure this has been, no matter how short a ride it was. We’re so honored that the community loved us as much as they did, and we will miss every single one of you who graced this restaurant with your presence. Your love for us has been absolutely awe inspiring. What a terrible time to not be able to hug you all, that might be the saddest part of this. I can’t begin to tell everyone how proud I am of my team for making this whole thing happen, for getting us off the ground, for showing up, for dancing all the time, for loving wine and food, and for turning this dream into a totally bad ass reality. Thank you all for being here, for dancing and singing with us, for laughing with always. Swing by this week to say goodbye and pick up the last of our inventory. We love you and we will miss you. Drink good wine, and never stop dancing. xoxo, Melissa
Earlier in August, Scott and Bruce Bogartz closed their eponymous restaurant in Sandy Springs after less than two years stating they simply “ran out of runway” there. The owner of Sweet Auburn Seafood announced he was closing the popular Southern seafood restaurant on Auburn Avenue due to the financial losses caused by the pandemic and recent “violence in the area.” Third Street Goods and adjoining cocktail bar Cardinal closed August 15 at the Beacon complex in Grant Park. Owner and bartender Kathryn DiMenichi never reopened Cardinal after closing the bar in mid-March.
Update, September 2, 9:20 a.m.: This story has been updated with comments from Revelator president Josh Owen.