Eat and greet

Bristol Bar & Grille opens in Prospect

Local owners say name recognition
will help them earn customers

By Don Ward

PROSPECT, Ky. (May 2006) – When Max & Erma's restaurant pulled up stakes and left Prospect last year, it left a significant vacancy in the back of the Prospect Village Shopping Center.

Karen Paulin

Photo by Don Ward

Karen Paulin poses at the bar of the new
Bristol Bar & Grille in Prospect, Ky.

But a group of local investors have banded together to form HIPP Enterprises LLC for the purpose of opening a new restaurant at 6051 Timber Ridge Dr. They chose a familiar company to align themselves with – Bristol Bar & Grille. It officially opened to the public on April 9, becoming the fourth full-service Bristol Bar & Grille location in the Louisville area since 1977.
Prospect resident and YUM Brands development director Norb Paulin heads the investment group that includes his brother, David Walts-Paulin and Prospect Village Shopping Center manager Monty Helm. The restaurant is operated solely by Main Street Management Associates, Bristol's parent company, which is handling staffing and day-to-day operations.
"I told my boss that I planned to retire in summer 2008, so I wanted to have something that was related to the restaurant industry, where I have spent nearly 30 years of my life," Norb Paulin said during a grand opening party April 7 that attracted about 500 people. His job at YUM consists of scouting locations throughout the Midwest for new restaurants.
The new Bristol restaurant has an upscale touch, with a unique design by Giampaolo Bianconcini of Ewald Design Associates. It also features the work of Ken von Roenn of Architectural Glass Art, which has created a series of unique blown glass lighting fixtures around the bar and larger pieces adorning the walls. The most recent collaboration of Bianconcini and von Roenn was the Bristol operation at 614 W. Main Street, Louisville. It opened several years ago.
The new Prospect location features seating for 170 people, room for private parties and an outdoor patio dining area that seats about 50.
"We decided on the Bristol because we wanted to get name recognition and branding," said HIPP Enterprises spokeswoman Karen Paulin, Norb's wife.
"People here in Prospect are choosey, and they can afford to be choosey, so we wanted something classy and fun," she said.
She said that when the shopping center was built a decade ago, Bristol Bar & Grille was considered but the timing wasn't right.
Doug Grossmann, president of Main Street Management Associates, had some say in the overall design of the restaurant, Karen Paulin said. "Because it is an established brand, we wanted to stay with the traditional Bristol colors of beige and dark green and black."
“I am really excited about this project," Grossmann said. "I have many friends who have been asking me for years to open a Bristol in Prospect. There is no question in my mind that the need is there, and I think we have put together the right combination to successfully address this need."
Other Bristol Bar & Grille locations are at 1321 Bardstown Rd. (opened in September 1977); 300 N. Hurstbourne Pkwy. in the Forum Shopping Center (April 1995); 614 W. Main St. (April 2003). A Bristol cafe operates at the J.B. Speed Museum.
The Prospect Bristol, like the other full-service Bristol operations, is open seven days a week serving lunch and dinner and a buffet-style brunch on Sunday. Menu, wine list and bar offerings are similar, if not identical, to those offered in the current Bristol Bar & Grille locations. Carry out service is also available.
The Prospect Bristol has initially created 43 full-time jobs. The general manager will be Amy Cairoli, who has worked at the Bristol since moving to Louisville from Cleveland in 1997. She is an assistant manager at the Bardstown Road operation. The chef is Michael Vissing, who has worked for the Bristol since 1991 and is currently the chef at the Hurstbourne Parkway operation.
Mark Aarvig, Main Street Management Associates' CEO, said, “I think what excites me the most about this new project is the opportunity it affords to many of our employees to be rewarded for their commitment to our company. Because of this new opportunity, many of our employees will receive promotions and chances to grow professionally."

• The Prospect Bristol Bar & Grille will have extended hours on May 14 for its Mother’s Day Sunday Brunch. Hours for that brunch will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. instead of the normal 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call the restaurant at (502) 292-2585 or visit: www.bristolbarandgrille.com.

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