By Alicia Dziak
Love the Gin Mill? How about funky gifts, fun décor and fresh baked cookies? Well, you’re in luck! The all-new Gin Mill Mercantile is opening this Saturday and will be filled with all things awesome.
The long-standing Gin Mill restaurant gives off a cool, laid back vibe to anyone who stops in to grab a burger or check out the live music, and surely, the vibe will make its way next door to the Mercantile.
“We’ve always wanted to expand on the t-shirts that we sell at the Gin Mill, but had no space,” explained Maribeth Rick, who, along with her husband, Ed, owns the Gin Mill. She noted that the lack of storage and resources made it difficult for patrons to purchase t-shirts and other merchandise in an efficient way.
The Mercantile is located right next to the Gin Mill, at 22 Washington Street. Previously home to Ellicottville Real Estate, the Ricks took over the space this spring, renovating it with new flooring, shelving running along the back wall and by the front window, and an antique counter that came from a local bison ranch. In the back, a new office was added, which is accessible from both the Mercantile and the Gin Mill.
“The store will include an expanded line of Gin Mill hats, t- shirts, golf shirts, koozies and other Gin Mill novelties, as well as numerous fun items like metal bar signs,” said Maribeth.
“Everything will have the Gin Mill feel, and nothing will be too serious,” added Ed.
The Gin Mill Mercantile will not only be about Gin Mill merchandise, however. It will be featuring rustic home and garden decor, made by their nieces, Joani and Chelsey Kollidas, who sell their work at various local craft shows. In addition, Joani, a pastry chef, makes cookies, which will be sold in the store, and custom cookies and cakes that are made to order.
“We’ll have a book in the store that people can look through to see photos of her work, then place an order,” said Maribeth, who is clearly very proud of her talented nieces and eager to share their work with the public.
The store will also have a section of convenience items, such as travel-size medicines and personal items, a.k.a. “the stuff people are always asking for at the Gin Mill.”
Ed added that, “We are doing our best not to compete with other stores” and that they think that many of the items in the Mercantile will be unique to Ellicottville. The selection will change with the season. And, don’t be surprised if you find the Rick’s golden retriever hanging out in the pet-friendly store.
While the Mercantile shares a name with the neighboring restaurant, there are separate entrances on Washington Street. Store hours will be 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday through Sunday.
The Gin Mill Mercantile will open next week; as of press time, exact date is TBD, but check the Gin Mill’s Facebook page for the latest updates.
Be sure to stop in and check out all the Gin Mill Mercantile has to offer. Whether it’s a cool tee or shot glass from the popular EVL hot spot next door, one-of-a-kind decor or a fancy cut-out cookie, you’ll find it all at Ellicottville’s newest store!