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Trojan Tavern to close, new bar to take its place

Trojan Tavern owner Von Ewing has decided to close the bar’s doors over a year after it opened downtown.

Ewing said the bar will close its doors for good on Monday, Sept. 24, but the location will open again about six weeks later for a new bar called “Infusions.”

“There’s a bar in Tuscaloosa called Catch 22 that serves what you call “infusion cocktails” – Alabama just passed a law to declare them legal,” Ewing said. “It’s one of the oldest bars in Tuscaloosa and one of my favorites. The general manager there is a certified mixologist from Las Vegas and he’ll be opening a brand new business called Infusions where the Trojan Tavern is now.”

The new bar will not just be the Trojan Tavern with a new name, Ewing said.

“I know the market now,” Ewing said. “It’s going to be the total opposite of the Tavern. The Tavern had its issues – although I think it was magnified. Me and him together are going to create a whole new atmosphere; the only thing we are going to keep is the penny-top bar. We’re going to totally change up the whole concept.”

Ewing said the new bar will have a more relaxed, calmer atmosphere with only live band performances – no DJs.

There had been concerns raised by some of the neighboring businesses that the Trojan Tavern was too loud at nights and created a negative loitering atmosphere outside the bar.

“Trojan Tavern I feel is not a bad place, but there were a couple of bad apples that ruined it,” Ewing said. “The new spot is not going to have those same issues. As a business, you set your atmosphere. A nice cocktail bar will work downtown. I’m looking for it to be a nice successful calm chill quality business.”

Ewing said he took the concerns of his business neighbors into consideration, but he said the switch is primarily due to his evolution.

“I want something different,” Ewing said. “I’m the total opposite of what the Tavern is. I’m just learning the market. Every market is different. I only knew the Tuscaloosa and Birmingham market; after you see the market, you see you can do some things better.”

Although he is closing the Tavern, Ewing will be bringing a new restaurant into Troy by the end of the year: “Bama Beach Bar and Grill” at the former location of the Dirty Pearl on U.S. Highway 231.

“We are a few months from having it opened,” Ewing said. “It will be a restaurant with a bar in it, including beach-themed cocktails. We want to give Troy a beach experience.”

Ewing said the decision to make a beach-style restaurant in Troy was an easy one.

“People in Troy love going to the beach,” he said. “And a lot of people are driving through Troy on their way to the beach.

The menu will feature seafood and American food including crab cakes, shrimp, sandwiches and burgers.