Asheville craft cocktail bar owner buys Ole Shakey’s, promises to ‘respect’ Riverside dive bar


Charlie Hodge, the owner of the downtown Asheville hit craft cocktail bar Sovereign Remedies, has purchased Ole Shakey’s, a decades-old dive/biker bar on Riverside Drive next to the ever-popular Bywater bar.

Hodge closed the deal with Shakey’s owner Paul Martin on Tuesday. Finalizing permitting could be complete as early as the end of this week or as late as the end of the month, according to Hodge.

Tuesday afternoon, Hodge said he jumped at the chance to buy Shakey’s from Martin, who purchased the bar a year ago and made some structural improvements. Hodge said that Martin told him that after a year of non-stop work, he was ready to sell and take a break.

So what’s in store for a Riverside Drive bar with a “dive bar” and “biker bar” reputation?

“It’s all about respecting what it is,” Hodge said, adding that he plans to retain the Ole Shakey’s name.

“It’s about sitting by the water. Paul installed a rootball court. There’s a good amount of outdoor seating. There’s a little stage and two pool tables and darts. It’s just a classic bar, and I don’t want to mess it up. You just really can’t re-invent that. It’s really, really comfortable,” he said.

The bar will add liquor, Hodge said. Also, look for some craft cocktail sensibility that so infuses Sovereign Remedies, the farm-to-bar cocktail bar and restaurant that Hodge opened a year ago at the corner of North Market Street in downtown.

“That thoughtfulness will carry over. There’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to get a great Old Fashioned at any bar. But at Shakey’s, it’s more about sitting by the river and having cheaper drinks. That’s what we’ve been focusing on with RPM on Tuesday nights at Sovereign Remedies,” he said.

“We’ll touch on tiki drinks because it feels perfect there. And slushy machines,” he added.

There will be some synergy between Ole Shakey’s and Bywater. The two are working on parking, for example. But there are no plans to add a dock or boat landing for easy access to Ole Shakey’s like there is at Bywater, Hodge said. And Shakey’s won’t be admitting children, Hodge said.

Since opening last September, Sovereign Remedies has made it’s mark as a go-to spot for fine cocktails, including many featuring fresh herbal ingredients. Sunil Patel, Hodge’s partner, operates Urban Patchwork Farms, which provides fresh produce to the bar and other venues around Asheville. Patel’s amazing Indian food is featured on Sunday nights, as well.


Image link for Ole Shakey’s.


susie the bear October 15, 2015 - 9:58 pm

Hooray for being child free! So tired of precious little irritating snowflakes screaming and running amok while their parents ignore them with their face in a beer. You’ve definitely got my business!

Renegade October 15, 2015 - 10:40 am

Apparently you did not like the F bombs in my prior comment, so please allow me to rephrase. The statement, “Also, look for some craft cocktail sensibility…” is positively heartbreaking to those of us who knew and loved Shakey’s. You would have had your ass tossed out of that place for using the word “craft” in front of any kind of booze, and some of us liked it that way. You will be sorely missed, Ole Shakey’s.

Renegade October 14, 2015 - 9:56 am

“Also, look for some craft cocktail sensibility” <–That statement is fucking heartbreaking. Even though I was banned for life, I'll always remember you fondly, Ole Shakey's. *single tear down my cheek*

Anthony October 13, 2015 - 10:17 pm

Don’t change what’s not broken.
Its a working mans bar.
Family bar
Locals’ go there year round
Have fun doing what we do, drinking

Murphy October 13, 2015 - 8:23 pm

“It’s all about respecting what it is…You just really can’t re-invent that.”

“We’ll touch on tiki drinks because it feels perfect there. And slushy machines,” he added.

Maybe a night of midget mud wrestling…

best of luck!

Doc October 13, 2015 - 5:33 pm

Okay….NOW Asheville is gone….lol

Frank Merenda October 14, 2015 - 6:30 pm

Amen to that!

sara October 16, 2015 - 12:48 pm

as if you went there alot!!

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