Tri-State Living • July/August 2022

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July/August 2022

Paint THE TOWN The Tipton Creative is making a splash in Ashland

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from the editor EDITORIAL Sarah Simmons, General Manager Heath Harrison, Staff Writer Mark Shaffer, Staff Writer Dawn Nolan, Contributor Benita Heath, Contributor Amanda Larch, Contributor news@tristateliving.com ADVERTISING Christie Coleman, Sales Consultant Alli Litton, Sales Consultant advertising@tristateliving.com PRODUCTION Kandi Thompson, Creative Director PHOTOGRAPHY Rachael Layne, Contributor Shannon Shank, Contributor Jeremy Holtzapfel, Contributor Kayla Niece, Contributor

to home.

July/August 2022

Paint THE TOWN The Tipton Creative is making a splash in Ashland

he way it should be

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on the cover Mural artist, Madeline Tipton is making a name for herself in the community with her business The Tipton Creative.

Being invaluable to our Tri-State community

16

years. I started out typing legal notices, then gained experience in the advertising, news, accounting and circulation departments. In addition, I’ve designed pages, caught papers off of the press and distributed our products. It’s important to understand each department and how they intertwine in order to put out the best possible products as seamlessly as we can. My favorite part of the job is also one of our duties — keeping our communities informed and telling the stories of the folks who decide to call it home. We are the ones who show up to council meetings, photograph moments of glory in high school sports, share the excitement of a new business owner. Being trusted to help tell those stories is something to be proud of. Our biggest opportunity is to become even better community partners. We will continue telling the stories of our neighbors, and do so through more platforms than

SARAH SIMMONS is the general manager of Ironton Publications, Inc. She is a native of Ironton and a life-long resident of the Tri-State.

ever. We will help local businesses formulate their marketing plans while providing the most diverse services in our history. We will participate in and host events that help make our communities better places to live, work, and play. We will continue being invaluable to our communities.

Tri-State Living (ISSN 02795124) is published every other month by Ironton Publications, Inc., 211 Center St., Ironton, OH 45638. Periodicals postage paid at Ironton, OH. Copyright 2022 Ironton Publications, Inc. Reprint of any part of contents without permission is forbidden. Titles registered in the U.S. Patent Office. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Tri-State Living, P.O. Box 647, Ironton, OH 45638-0647.

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July/August 2022 Contents

8

arts & culture 8

THE TIPTON CREATIVE Ashland artist brings color to public spaces, local businesses

living 13

24

36

PET SAFETY Summer safety tips for your furry friends

shopping 18

LOCAL MERCANTILE Childhood friends open boutique in Ashland

feature 24

TWISTED VINE FAMILY VINEYARD Family vineyard located in Patriot, Ohio delights the senses

homes 30

KLEINMAN HOUSE Historic home reminds owner of fairy tales

food 36

SAL’S ITALIAN SPEAKEASY Prohibition-themed eatery transports customers to 1920s speakeasy

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FROM THE COOKBOOK Beat the heat with sweet summer treats

in every issue

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4

FROM THE EDITOR Being invaluable to the community

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THE LAST WORD Making the Tri-State a musical destination


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arts & culture Tri-State Living

up close Ashland artist brings color to public spaces, local businesses.

p. 8


Doing arts & culture | On Display

GOOD Artist builds community through color Story Dawn Nolan | Photography Shannon Shank, Submitted

A

t just 23 years old, Ashland native Madeline Tipton is making a name for herself as an artist and business owner. She started her company, The Tipton Creative, in April 2021, and since then, she has painted more than two dozen murals around the area — in local businesses, public spaces and private residences. “I do murals full-time, and I see myself doing that for the long-term,” Tipton said. “It’s

8 | Tri-StateLiving

not what I thought I’d be doing with my life, but I really love it.” Tipton attended Morehead State University where she majored in communications and marketing. She was particularly interested in fundraising and nonprofit work, so after graduating in November 2020, she decided to pursue an MPA — Master of Public Administration. After a few semesters, she decided that program wasn’t for her, so she planned to switch gears and go


for an MBA. Meanwhile, she’d decided to get a “fun job” that was lower stress. She ended up working at a local boutique, Pretty & Poised. “I also started an Etsy shop doing stickers and I started a Facebook group called Ashland Artists and Supporters, so artists could get jobs,” Tipton said. “Painting and drawing were just hobbies of mine that I always had. But, one thing led to another, and someone asked me to do a mural at The Nest Day Spa [in Russell].” From there, things snowballed, and she received more and more requests. Most of Tipton’s work has been in the Ashland/Russell/Boyd County area, but she recently completed a horse racing themed mural for an Airbnb in Louisville. “I loved that one, but it was also really different because it was for an Airbnb,” Tipton said. “We had to schedule around bookings, and then we had to reschedule because of rain, and then it was

Tri-StateLiving | 9


arts & culture | On Display

consistently cold, so we had to get the whole thing done in about five days. Also, horses are hard animals to draw in general, and it was like a 100-year-old house, so there were parts of the brick that were difficult to get into and a few different textures to account for.” Both weather and the wall itself are things that have to be accounted for with most murals, particularly exterior ones, Tipton said. “For outdoor murals, the weather plays a big part — if it rains, if it’s too cold, if it’s too hot — all of that can be a factor,” she said. “And depending on if it is drywall, if it’s brick or some kind of stone, that is something you have to take into consideration as well. If it’s a more textured wall, it’ll take more time to fit in between the crevices and may soak in more of the paint. And if you’re trying to do straight lines on brick, you have to take into account the grooves in 10 | Tri-StateLiving

it. Really, you just have to work with what’s there.” As for the process itself, it usually goes like this: Tipton will access the wall and take the needed measurements, she will then prepare a client estimate and establish a timeline with the client. A contract is then signed and a deposit is paid before the design consultation occurs. “It’s either going to be a custom design or someone’s logo,” Tipton said. “Sometimes, people know exactly what they want for their design and other aren’t really sure. I work with them and then give them two rounds of revisions. Once the design is approved, we can get started.” Personally, Tipton says she is “drawn towards color,” but the designs are more about the brand messaging than anything else. “I like to make designs that are bold and meaningful or symbolic in some way,” she said. “But if its for a business,


On Display | arts & culture what matters is that it somehow ties into the brand and communicates the brand and attracts new people to that business.” Tipton does most of her work solo, but she’s had an assistant for a couple projects and her sister, Allyson Eyermann, has helped her with a few as well. “She’s [Eyermann] seven years older, and she was an art major and has always been like a role model to me,” she said. “She’s really helped support me in starting my business.” Acrylic latex paint, brushes, her iPad and (sometimes) a projector are usually all the tools Tipton needs to complete a piece. “I like using a projector so that way, the client gets to see exactly what they’re going to get,” Tipton said. Depending on the complexity of the design, Tipton can usually complete a mural in four to seven days. Logos are a quick turnaround, usually taking only a day or two. “The longest was nine days,” she said. “Depending on what my schedule is like, I’ll work anywhere from six to 12 hours a day.” A few other recent murals Tipton has painted include one for the City of Ashland at Ashland Riverfront Park to emphasize the new creativity-focused branding, one for The Coffee Doc’s location in the Ashland Town Center, another for The Local Mercantile in South Ashland (see story on page 17) and one for the new A W Meat House in Argillite. “That one [the cow at A W] was really fun to do, and it only took two days,” Tipton said. “I also loved doing the library mural with book characters at Hager Elementary, too, and the design for The Mill’s new location.” She even had the chance to restore one of the Denise Spalding’s flood wall murals highlighting women’s history.

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“It was a true honor to be asked to do that,” Tipton said. Tipton also worked on a panel recently for the Central Park Sensory Garden, which she found very rewarding. “It was like four by eight feet and one side there are squirrels for visual stimulation and then on the front there are different textures and things to make sounds with, so that it could be therapeutic for kids with autism. It was meaningful because you get to see the tangible impact — you get to see the kids and the difference you’re making.” Her murals are also making an impact, as evidenced by the amount of social media photos people take with them. “It gets people excited,” Tipton said. “It’s part of revitalization.” One example is the Country Music Highway mural for Art Alley (located between 15th and 16th streets in

12 | Tri-StateLiving

downtown Ashland) she painted that includes hometown musicians Billy Ray Cyrus, Naomi and Wynonna Judd. “When Naomi passed away people were taking pictures and leaving flowers,” Tipton said. “That was really special.” While it might not be what she had initially thought she’d be doing with her life, Tipton is still doing good by, as her tagline says, “creating art to celebrate, commemorate and build community.” “There’s been a huge movement in the area, and here in Ashland — my hometown — to support local artists and want them to succeed, and that makes me really excited,” Tipton said. “I never thought I’d move back home after college, but It’s been really awesome.” Contact Madeline at thetiptoncreative@gmail.com and follow her business on social media (Facebook, Instagram and TikTok): @thetiptoncreative. a


Tri-StateLiving

up close Summer safety tips for your furry friends.

p. 13 p. XX Tri-StateLiving | 13


living | Pets

Keep pets safe all summer Tips to overcome warm weather hazards

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AMILY FEATURES — Summer means extra time outdoors. Sunny months provide a perfect opportunity for bonding with pets, but higher temperatures, seasonal plants and pests and additional travel can pose higher risks for complications. To help keep dogs, cats and other pets safe during summer adventures, consider these tips from the experts at VCA Animal Hospitals, which has more than 1,000 locations across North America that cared for more than 4.5 million pets last year. BEAT THE HEAT Dogs and cats cannot control their body temperature by sweating as humans do. They have a small number of sweat glands located in their footpads and primarily regulate their temperature by panting. Vigorous exercise, leaving a pet in a vehicle with poor ventilation – even if the windows are down – or being left outside without shade and water on hot days can lead to heatstroke, or hyperthermia. Increased humidity combined 14 | Tri-StateLiving

with warmer temperatures intensifies the risk of heat stroke, especially during the first few warm days as pets transition to outdoor activity. If your pet exhibits any symptoms of heatstroke — elevated breathing rates, dry or sticky gums, lethargy, disorientation, abnormal gum color, bruised gums or seizures — pour cool water over your pet’s head, stomach and feet or apply cool, wet cloths, ensure continuous airflow and see a veterinarian immediately. KEEP TICKS AT BAY As pets spend more time outdoors in the summer, they’re often exposed to pests like ticks. Ticks can transmit serious diseases to both dogs and cats. According to the Companion Animal Parasite Council, as many as 1 in 20 dogs tested positive for tickborne diseases in 2021. Ticks climb onto pets from blades of grass or fall from overhanging trees and foliage. If a tick finds its way onto your pet, use tweezers or disposable gloves to grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible then pull straight out with steady, even

pressure until the tick releases. If you find a tick, carefully inspect all areas of skin, including behind the ears and between the toes, for additional ticks. After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area with soap and water and wash your hands. Save the tick in a resealable plastic bag to show your veterinarian and take note of the time and place the bite occurred and any other details that may aid your veterinarian should an illness occur. Follow your veterinarian’s advice about tick preventative measures, and make sure the product is safe to be used for your pet’s size. Never use dog


flea and tick products on cats. TRAVEL SAFELY If you plan to travel with your pet, pack the necessities for your animal. Your pet’s luggage should include food, water bowls, treats, a leash and collar, toys, medications and printed copies of medical records, including vaccination history. Check with your veterinarian to determine if a health certificate is needed for travel. Also ensure your pet is comfortable with his or her crate or carrier before flying or embarking on a long road trip. Knowing where to take your pet

in case of an emergency while away from home is also essential. Look up emergency veterinary clinics near your destination before departing or ask if your vet offers virtual care options. For example, through the myVCA app, you can access 24/7 live chat with licensed veterinary professionals. MANAGE ALLERGIES Many of the same allergens that affect humans impact pets. Atopy, also known as inhalant allergy, is a common cause of skin problems in dogs and cats. Affected animals often have a history of chronic or recurrent itching

and tend to have a history of repeated skin or ear infections. Itchy pets tend to scratch themselves, lick their feet and rub on furniture or carpet. Atopy can also cause cats to groom excessively and develop bald or crusty spots on their skin. Some allergies may also affect the respiratory or digestive systems or the eyes. If your pet is displaying signs of allergies, your veterinarian can recommend appropriate testing and treatment to reduce symptoms. Visit vcahospitals.com to find more ways to keep pets safe throughout the summer and book an appointment. Tri-StateLiving | 15 19


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shopping Tri-State Living

up close Childhood friends open boutique in Ashland.

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In the Biz | shopping

TRENDY GIFTS South Ashland boutique offers stylish options Story Dawn Nolan | Photography Shannon Shank

C

hristina Wamsley and Haley Layman have been friends since childhood. More recently, they became business partners. The two women opened The Local Mercantile in South Ashland in April. “We had talked about it over the years the way a lot of friends do,” Wamsley said. It wasn’t until late last year that they decided to take the next step. “We were talking about it again, and the next thing I knew, Christina had gotten us an EIN,” Layman said. “It was very quick,” Wamsley added. Wamsley had worked in retail most of her life but had been a stay-at-home mom of four for the last three years. Layman, also a married mom, had returned to the area for a “slower, simpler pace” after living Tri-StateLiving | 19


shopping | In the Biz

20 | Tri-StateLiving


in Nashville and working in hospitality. She cited her time there as an inspiration for the business. “I felt like Ashland didn’t have a lot of trendy gift shops,” she said. “I wanted to do something unique, that you’d find in a bigger city. Being in Nashville was an influence. They’re 10 years ahead.” The friends had worked together before, at The Pink Pineapple, another boutique/gift shop that was owned by Layman’s cousin in the early 00s. “I always wanted a gift shop and so we kind of wanted to do a Pink Pineapple 2.0,” Layman said. The friends chose to set up shop in South Ashland because Christina’s husband, Scott, was working to redevelop the area. He and his business partner, Scott Ball, opened Tomcat Bourbon & Brew House in October. “South Ashland has a lot more foot traffic now; people are out and about,” Wamsley said.

While the name might suggest the boutique focuses on local products, that isn’t exactly the case, though they do try to host vendors from the area for pop-ups from time to time. “It helps everyone, and we want to support other businesses,” Wamsley said. Rather than local, they carry a wide variety of items that are stylish, seasonally popular and not typically found in the area. “We want to offer our customers items that they’d usually have to drive to Lexington or Columbus to find,” Layman said. “We’re also not trying to compete with other local boutiques,” Wamsley said. “Even if we’re carrying the same brand, we really put in an effort into thinking if other shops have an item.” Some of the Mercantile’s most popular items are the graphic tees, high-end dupe sneakers and Clover Lane

Tri-StateLiving | 21


shopping | In the Biz accessories. They also have foodie items like cocktail and drink mixes, specialty cards and books, wedding and baby gifts and more. The selection appeals to customers with different tastes, since the friends are also style opposites. Christina is is more into “rose gold, florals and girly,” while Haley is more “neutrals, modern and edgy.” “Opposites attract and it works for us,” Wamsley said. “We can see something that maybe the other or neither of us would be into,” Layman added. Another interesting aspect of the shop is spray tanning. Layman was actually doing spray tans near her home through her business, Glow Garage, before renaming it to Girl Talk Tans and moving it into the back section of the boutique. “We can do walk-ins if the store is open, so people can walk around while they wait,” Layman said. The combination seems to be working out well for the business, as does the friendship. “It’s like we’re coming to hang out instead of coming to work,” Wamsley said. “It was never a scary idea, either. We don’t disagree, anyway. This was something fun for us to do together.” “We have so much fun every day,” Layman said. “It’s like we’re making up for lost time.” The Local Mercantile is located at 2030 29th St. in Ashland. Business hours are Wednesday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Shipping and AfterPay are available. The best method of contact is via email at christina@localmercantileky.com or social media - @localmercantile. Wamsley and Layman worked with local artist Madeline Tipton (see story on page 8) for their signage. “We couldn’t get our vibe right with how we wanted the sign to be,” Wamsley said. “She did our logo on the outside and inside of the store.” a

22 | Tri-StateLiving


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feature | Twisted Vine

Twisted

VINE Story Benita Heath | Photography Kayla Niece

Family vineyard delights the senses


C

liches may be a bore but they still retain a core of truth. Take this one. Necessity is the mother of invention. Now let’s modify that to serendipity is mother of invention because that could describe how Twisted Vine Family Vineyard came about. The vineyard is in Patriot near Gallipolis, about a 30 minute drive from Ironton.

Take that drive and you will find a welcoming for the individuals who drive there and their taste buds. Because sitting out on the veranda enjoying wine can be part of the experience of going to Patriot. But before we look at how the winery came about, let’s look at what one will find at Patriot. Beautiful pale wood cottages where one can inhale the sweet air of woods and hear birds sing. Here serenity abounds.


26 | Tri-StateLiving


Twisted Vine | feature

Now let’s take a look at how the winery came about. About 14 years ago, Ed Davis planted some grapes with no particular goal in mind. Or as the website says “what began as a gesture of love with the planting of a few grapevines has led us here to a family vineyard built on four generations of land stewardship.” Those 400 grapevines gave Davis a surprise.

“We ended up with six tons of grapes,” Bill Davis, next generation of the family, said in a recent phone interview. “My daughter and I like wine so we started going to schools to see if we could learn how to make it ourselves,” Davis said. Those schools were at The Ohio State University and Kent State University. “And we visited wineries,” he said.

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Then they took that knowledge to build a winery that produces cabernets, merlots, chardonnay and fruit wines. On Fridays and Saturdays visitors can come to Patriot to sit outside and enjoy a glass or two of wine. “That goes from 4 to 6 and we have music,” Davis said. The winery itself opens at 1 p.m. Fridays. Appetizers are on the menu for those who drive to Patriot to enjoy wine there. There is a cheese tray with two 28 | Tri-StateLiving

hard cheeses, a cheese curd, crackers, grapes and bread. A charcuterie board of three cured meats, hard cheese, grapes and bread. Or a cheese curd plate. The wines can be bought locally at Generations Quickstop at 2986 State Route 93 in Ironton. The phone number is 740-532-0888. “The winery is here to enjoy and relax and be in the countryside,” Davis said. a


homes Tri-StateLiving

up close Restored Ironton home full of character.

p. 30 Tri-StateLiving | 35


FROM A

Story.4book.6

Historic home reminds owner of fairy tales Story Amanda Larch | Photography Rachael Layne

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im Kleinman almost didn’t purchase the Stone House in Ironton. He planned to attend an out-ofstate auction but turned his car around in a spur of the moment decision to bid on the home and change the trajectory of his, and the home’s, future. “I knew this house was going to be up for sale,” Kleinman, a local businessman, says. “I turned the opposite way and came down here, walked through it and ended up with my hand up. It was an outside bid, no reserve, and I scratched

30 | Tri-StateLiving

my head and said, ‘boy did I get into a project.’” As a child living a few blocks over, Kleinman and his siblings would often ride their bikes past the Stone House, and he remembers he always admired its charm. Once he moved into his current home, only three doors down from the Stone House, and which he also completely refurbished, it was only a matter of time before the stars aligned for him to purchase the historic home and help restore it to its original beauty.


Showcase | homes

Kleinman couldn’t resist the draw of another project—though this is his biggest to date. He has totally refurbished the interior, including windows, doors, ceilings, woodwork and bathrooms, almost entirely by himself in the last two years. “After I got into it, I’ve seen it was a whole lot more than I should have taken on because I like doing most of this stuff myself,” Kleinman says. “I just can’t stand to do one thing, and I did a few projects like this, but this was the biggest taking on because this house has so much character. It’s incredible, the stonework. It blows me away to this day. I just couldn’t leave anything alone that wasn’t completely restored.” Built about 100 years ago by thenlocal businessman Paul Sweikhart, the Stone House is located at 11th Street and Kemp Avenue. Sweikhart, who was in the housing business himself, saw the house in Cincinnati, so the story goes, which was the house of the year there. Kleinman says Sweikhart may have gotten ahold of the blueprints to build the home for himself and his family. Kleinman wanted the interior to reflect the time period of the home when it was built. “You don’t want to take away from that, but you have to modernize it, too,” he says. Some of the renovations Kleinman completed include tearing out a wall to make the kitchen one large dining area, and he installed a gas fireplace and central air. “It never had central air; four wealthy people lived in this home and never any central air because it had hot water heat,” Tri-StateLiving | 31



Showcase | homes

he says. “There’s no duct work with that type of heating, it has those old registers. I ripped all that out, put central air and heat downstairs and a separate central air and heat upstairs in the attic so it would all be uniform.” Many homebuyers want natural light and open spaces, and to accommodate this and to recall the original look of the Stone House, Kleinman redid the windows. “There’s so much light because of all the windows, and 100 years ago, it had big, long windows that almost looked like doors,” he says. “The paneling made the place look like a dungeon. I couldn’t stand that walk down here; you felt like you’re walking into a cave. So I rounded the arch in the ceiling, and it turned out really pretty. That’s one of the highlights of coming in here.” Kleinman refurbished the handmade 100-year-old stairwell, and he says the stairway area completely sets off the house when people walk in the front door. It’s one of the outstanding features of the home, as well as the separate stone garage and an original French door that Kleinman uncovered almost on accident. “There’s one wall in the whole home that I didn’t tear out,” he explains. “I didn’t know what was there because on the outside you could see the arch, which they call soldier brick. It was all filled in with a different color stone and I hated that; I couldn’t stand that discolored stone.” On one sleepless night after ordering a window for that space, Kleinman walked to the Stone House and happened to pull on the interior wall to discover the French door. Needless to say, he canceled his order and

Tri-StateLiving | 33


since has completely restored the French door. “I thought it was just an empty hole, but here was an original French door. I about had a heart attack.” While the two-car garage is separate from the home, Kleinman included it in his renovations as well. It’s made of the same stone as the house. “It really sets the place off, too, because of the stone,” he says. “You don’t see too many stone garages, and most of them are attached to the house. I tore the ceilings out, wrapped all the walls, painted it and put all new electric in.” With the Stone House just a few minutes’ walk from Kleinman’s residence, he was further reassured this project was meant to be for him. “That was another reason I wanted to purchase it, when you have all your tools real close and you feel like working, you can come right here and walk home and if you feel bad

34 | Tri-StateLiving

or have a headache or this or that,” he says. Kleinman recently listed the home on the market and hopes he can gain a new and friendly neighbor from the sale. “This is the best neighborhood in the whole city, in my opinion,” he says. “That’s another reason I bought it because it’s, to me, the best neighborhood in town. If you go to flip a house, the area makes a lot of difference, for the buyers.” As someone who has always loved antiques, the Stone House’s character is Kleinman’s favorite aspect of this project. He’s reminded of fairy tales when he looks at the stone. “For me, it’s got more character on the outside — I don’t know about other people’s insides — than any home in the whole city of Ironton,” he says. “And I’ve been told that many times. It looks like a storybook house.” a


Tri-StateLiving

food

up close Ashland eatery transports customers to 1920s speakeasy.

p. 36 Tri-StateLiving | 35


TAKE A STEP BACK IN TIME PROHIBITION-THEMED EATERY FINDS SUCCESS Story Amanda Larch | Photography Jeremy Holtzapfel

S

tepping through the hidden door at Sal’s Italian Eatery and Speakeasy in Ashland transports visitors 100 years in the past to the days of Prohibition and bootlegging. After finding success with their other business ventures, including Bombshells & Ales in Ashland and Bombshells, Burgers & BBQ in Huntington, adjacent to their Bare Arms

36 | Tri-StateLiving

Gun Range, Christy Bare and her husband opened The Union on Carter as a wedding and party venue. When another space opened a few blocks over that had two kitchens, they thought it would help with the catering side of The Union. Once they explored the space, though, they decided they could make something more out of it. Channeling their history of successful themed restaurants,


In the Kitchen | food they decided to tackle opening one more, this time turning their attentions to an Italian restaurant. Without dedicated staff and managers, Bare says none of it could be possible. “When we bought this, I was furious; I was not ready to do another restaurant because restaurants are hard,” Christy Bare, co-owner of Sal’s, says. “Luckily, we have a great general manager who knows how to hire people; he’s really good about being able to find great workers. That took a little bit of the pressure off of me.” Bare’s husband wanted something they hadn’t tried

before and suggested a 1920s mobster-themed speakeasy. “We have a gun range, so we like stuff like that. We liked the ‘Sopranos’ vibe, that sort of stuff. Everything we were looking at was Al Capone,” Bare says. Once they agreed on a theme, the couple traveled to get inspiration and ideas from other similarly themed restaurants. “I didn’t really have plans for what it was going to look like, but when we do research, we always go out of town to a few other places to get ideas,” Bare says. “We go to big

Tri-StateLiving | 37


food | In the Kitchen

cities and think we need something like that here. When we bought this place, we had to darken it because you can’t have a mobster feel without that.” The atmosphere and food of the restaurant is a little more upscale than some of their other businesses, and Bare says they hired experienced chef Ben Van Horn to plan the menu. Since opening Sal’s in April, Bare says they’ve had tremendous success and outstanding support. “He’s got an extensive background at country clubs and

38 | Tri-StateLiving

with opening restaurants,” she says. “He came up with the entire menu, and we tweaked it a little bit. So far, the menu has been outstanding. People love the food.” Footage from hundred-year-old baseball games and silent movies play at the bar to help make diners feel like they’ve stepped into the past, and jazz and other periodspecific music wafts over the restaurant’s speakers. The décor consists of old photographs, dark lighting and interior, and even an authentic Tommy gun hanging


In the Kitchen | food

below a picture of notorious mobster Al Capone. The servers and bartenders don newsboy hats, suspenders and leather aprons, and many of the signature menu items and specialty drinks are named after 1920s slang and lingo. “I think we could have bad food and people would still think they loved it because the vibe is so cool in here,” Bare laughs. “People love the music, and it looks really neat. Everybody’s really liked the atmosphere.” They were almost finished with renovations before Bare

realized they needed the speakeasy door— “you can’t have a speakeasy without speakeasy doors,” she says. To make it seem more secretive, the Bares created a bakery space up front containing the hidden door, which hides the bar and is reminiscent of cover businesses for authentic speakeasies. “Speakeasies in the 1920s had a cover business because alcohol was illegal,” Bare explains. “So, you walk in and that’s Sal’s Bakery.” Many people have asked Bare about the titular Sal, and

Tri-StateLiving | 39


food | In the Kitchen

if he really existed, and she says she’s had fun creating a fictional character and backstory of a 1920s mobster. The name of the restaurant stems from something easy to remember and easy to search online. “I came up with a Sal from back in the 1920s who was a mobster. I have a picture out front of him in the lobby, with a story about that actual Sal,” Bare says. “I adlibbed a little bit of restaurant history to make it tie in. When people walk in and see that, they think that there is a Sal.” Owning Sal’s is a different experience than the Bares’ other businesses because it’s gotten the most attention for its theme, Bare says. They purchased an old car — named Miss Daisy — to place out front of the restaurant, which is also a huge hit with customers and serves as a little bit of free advertising. “People love the theme. They love the car outside,” Bare says. “My husband bought the car off a lady, one of my mom’s friends. It was her husband’s who had passed away,

40 | Tri-StateLiving

and she was distraught that she was selling his car. Now, she’s probably our best customer. Everybody takes a picture with the car, so she couldn’t be happier that Miss Daisy is completely famous now.” Bare says the food may be what she likes best about owning Sal’s Italian Eatery, though she also enjoys customers’ reactions to the restaurant and the changes it has undergone. “It’s fun to watch people come in the front doors and say, ‘Wow, this place is a lot different than it’s ever been’ because it looked the same for the last 20 years,” she says. “People appreciate the fact that it’s different, and that’s how you get good business. People like to put it on Facebook, people love to take pictures; they advertise for you when you have a cool place.” The location of Sal’s Italian Eatery is a big draw for customers, especially those from out of town, Bare says. “I always loved this building and where it was. It’s kind of


off the beaten path of restaurants,” she says. “It’s got a cool vibe to where if people come in town, they want to go — they don’t want to go to a chain restaurant.” Sal’s Italian Eatery is the same space as previous Ashland restaurants, like Chimney Corner Café and most recently Blazers Restaurant and Bakery. It’s special to the Bares because they had their wedding reception in one of the space’s iterations. “We were customers of this restaurant anyway; it’s been a restaurant for 20 years,” Bare says. “I was friends with the girl that owned it, and it was a no brainer whenever it came up for sale. Our business three blocks away needed to do catering; that’s really what we thought it would be used for. It’s taken off and been pretty successful, just the Italian restaurant.” Sal’s Italian Eatery and Speakeasy is located at 1624 Carter Avenue in Ashland, Kentucky. a

Tri-StateLiving | 41


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Sweet Italian Sausage Polenta • 1 package Carando Sweet Italian Sausage • 8 cups chicken stock • 2 cups dry polenta • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated • 3 tablespoons olive oil • 1 red bell pepper, julienned • 1 yellow bell pepper, julienned • 1 medium yellow onion, julienned • 1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced • 1/4 cup white wine • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar • 2 tablespoons honey • 2 teaspoons oregano

Heat grill to medium-low. Grill sausages 15-20 minutes, using tongs to turn frequently; reserve. In heavy-bottomed pot, whisk stock and polenta; bring to boil. Cook, stirring frequently, about 15 minutes, or until thick and creamy. Remove polenta from heat and whisk in butter and cheese. Reserve until ready to serve. Heat pan over medium-high heat. Add olive oil, peppers, onions and garlic; and saute until vegetables soften and just begin to color. Deglaze pan with white wine and reduce by half. Add vinegar, honey and oregano; cook until reduced by half. Add sausages to pan to warm. When sausages are warm, place polenta on large platter then top with sausages, peppers and onions. Find more ways to put your own spin on summer grilling at Carando.com.


food | From the Cookbook

Pineapple Chicken Kebabs • 1 can (6 ounces) pineapple juice • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil • 1 lime, zest and juice only • 1 tablespoon sugar • 1 piece (1 inch) fresh ginger, grated • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes • 1 package Perdue Fresh Cuts Diced Chicken Breast • 1/2 fresh pineapple, cut into 16 chunks • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 16 (1-inch) chunks • 4 metal skewers or 8 wooden skewers (12 inches) soaked in water 30 minutes

44 | Tri-StateLiving

In bowl, whisk pineapple juice, vegetable oil, lime juice and zest, sugar, ginger and red pepper flakes until sugar dissolves. Add diced chicken breast, cover and marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes. Thread alternating pieces of chicken, pineapple and red bell pepper onto skewers. Discard remaining marinade. Heat lightly greased grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Grill kebabs 10-12 minutes, turning every 3-4 minutes until chicken feels firm to touch and a meat thermometer inserted in the center reaches 165 F. Remove kebabs from grill, rest 2-3 minutes and serve. Tip: If using wooden skewers, soak in water 30 minutes to keep skewers from burning on grill. If using metal skewers, remember chicken will cook faster because metal will conduct heat and cook chicken cubes from inside along with grill heat cooking chicken from outside.


Pork Chops in Creamy Mustard-Peppercorn Sauce • 3/4 cup evaporated 2% milk • 3 tablespoons spicy brown mustard or Dijon mustard • 3/4 teaspoon coarsely cracked black peppercorns • 1/2 teaspoon all-purpose flour • 4 boneless pork loin chops (1 1/4 pounds), cut 3/4-inch thick • 1/4 teaspoon salt • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil • 1 teaspoon minced garlic • 1/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth • Cooked noodles or rice (optional) • Chopped fresh parsley (optional)

In bowl, whisk milk, mustard, peppercorns and flour. Set aside. Pat pork chops dry with paper towels. Sprinkle both sides of chops with salt. In large nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook pork chops 3-4 minutes, or until browned. Turn and cook 3-4 minutes, or until thermometer inserted in thickest part of chops reads 145 F. Transfer chops to serving platter. Loosely cover with foil to keep warm. Add garlic to drippings in skillet. Cook 15 seconds. Stir in broth. Cook, stirring constantly, until most liquid evaporates. Stir in milk mixture and any accumulated juices from cooked pork. Cook and stir until just boiling. Immediately remove from heat and spoon sauce over chops. Serve with noodles or rice, if desired. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

Tri-StateLiving | 45


Watermelon Ice Cream Bars WATERMELON CURD: • 3/4 cup watermelon juice • 2 tablespoons lime juice • 1/2 cup honey • 1 pinch salt • 3 eggs, lightly beaten • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), cut into small cubes CRUST: • 8 graham crackers, crushed • 2 tablespoons honey • 1 pinch salt • 4 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled • Basil leaves, for garnish WHIPPED CREAM: • 1 cup heavy whipping cream 46 | Tri-StateLiving

To make watermelon curd: In medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine watermelon juice, lime juice, honey and salt. Stir to combine then add eggs. Place pan over medium heat and cook, adding cubed butter to pan and stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and coats back of wooden spoon. Immediately remove from heat and carefully pour through fine mesh sieve. Cool completely in refrigerator. To make crust: Preheat oven to 350 F. In food processor, pulse graham crackers until rough crumbs form. Add honey, salt and melted butter; pulse until mixture resembles wet sand. Line 8-by-8-inch pan with parchment paper then press graham cracker mixture into bottom of pan in even layer. Bake crust about 10 minutes, or until just beginning to brown. Allow crust to cool completely.


From the Cookbook | food

Watermelon Gelato • 2 cups pureed watermelon • 1/2 cup sugar • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch • 1 cup fat-free half-and-half • 3 tablespoons lemon juice • 1/2 cup whipping cream

In blender, blend watermelon, sugar, cornstarch, half-andhalf, lemon juice and whipping cream until smooth. Using ice cream maker, process gelato according to manufacturer's instructions. To make whipped cream: When crust and curd are completely cooled, in large bowl, whip cream until stiff peaks form. Gently push cream to one side of bowl and pour in watermelon curd. Using spatula, gently fold cream and watermelon curd together until no streaks are visible. Pour creamy watermelon mixture over graham cracker crust. Freeze dessert completely, 4-6 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, loosen sides with small spatula or butter knife. Turn out onto cutting board and use large spatula to flip so graham cracker crust is on bottom. Cut into eight bars and top each with basil leaf.

Tri-StateLiving | 47


food | From the Cookbook

Apple Berry Salsa • 2 Envy Apples, cored and chopped • 1 pound strawberries, hulled and chopped • 1 pint blueberries • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt • 2 tablespoons honey • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice • Tortilla chips, pita chips, apple chips or graham crackers, for serving

48 | Tri-StateLiving

In medium bowl, combine apples, strawberries, blueberries and salt. In small bowl, whisk honey and lime juice. Pour honey and lime juice over fruit mixture. Stir together to combine. Serve immediately with tortilla chips, pita chips, apple chips or graham crackers, or refrigerate until ready to serve.


From the Cookbook | food

Pina Colada Sweetpotato Ice Pops • 1/2 cup coconut cream • 3/4 cup mashed and cooked sweetpotato • 3/4 cup diced pineapple • 2 tablespoons honey • 1 tablespoon lime juice • Coconut flakes (optional)

In food processor or high-speed blender, mix coconut cream, sweetpotato, pineapple, honey and lime juice. Transfer batter to freezer molds. Place in freezer 3-4 hours. Top with coconut flakes, if desired.

Tri-StateLiving | 49


the last word

Make the Tri-State a musical destination

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rowing up in Ironton, Ohio, I was surrounded by talented musicians from a very young age. I watched radio-worthy songs being written and performed for the first time and stage-worthy sets being played on back porches. I saw the abundance of artistic and musical talent that was unique to the Tri-State and I was inspired by it. I saw the lack of resources that our artists were working with and I wanted to do something about it. Exposure to this music had propelled me forward spiritually, I wanted to somehow propel these artists forward in return. I also wanted everyone in the Tri-State to feel the unity and hope that I felt when I was surrounded by these musicians who are products of our community. When I started my first music festival at the age of 20, there were not many other festivals in the area. I noticed the emerging newgrass genre being promoted in other areas and I knew the Tri-State had just as much, if not more, talent and potential. Since that time, I have been astounded and grateful for the entrepreneurs, nonprofit organizers, land owners and music promoters who have stepped forward to support our local music scene. If we can continue to collectively shift our focus from industry to artistic expression it will benefit us as a whole. We have more than enough talent in our area to become a musical destination. The Tri-State is a hotbed of emerging artists, with a beautiful landscape on the great Ohio River and timeless historic downtown areas that have room to grow. We have talented entrepreneurs and leaders who have already started facilitating this growth. If we can continue 50 | Tri-StateLiving

Bob Delong is an Ironton native and the founder and organizer of Ohio River Revival

to stick together to support our local artists, the economic impact will eventually support us in return. There are countless business opportunities that come along with a thriving art scene, including studios, galleries, venues, producers, marketing/management firms, journalism, restaurants, hotels and non-profit organizations. I hope that everyone can join together and realize that embracing the amazing, innate talent that surrounds the TriState is the key to our growth and success both financially and spiritually. Let us embrace the creative energy that freely flows from our area and support events, venues, businesses, and especially artists, that are making this area a music destination.


Press Room Recordings features original music and unique interpretations from local and regional artists presented live for the PRR cameras. Contact maclean.james@irontontribune.com to get involved.


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Cancer care the way it should be

They say you don’t know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have. And when a loved one has cancer, it is. You may find yourself taking on a new role or taking on a huge new responsibility when you’re already overwhelmed. So, it’s okay to ask for help. And even if you don’t, St. Mary’s will offer it anyway. Because being strong doesn’t mean being alone.

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Edwards

Comprehensive Cancer Center at Cabell Huntington Hospital

The Cancer Centers of

52 | Tri-StateLiving

304.526.1349 or 304.399.6500 • mountainhealthnetwork.org

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