New whiskey bar in Asheboro takes you back to the 1940s

Small Business Spotlight

ASHEBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — The city of Asheboro is full of economic and cultural resources. Tom Papas, along with his sister and wife, decided to take advantage of it all by opening Leo’s Whiskey Bar on North Street.

The members only bar is a tribute to Tom’s dad, Leo.

“He was just a hard-working honest guy…he would’ve loved that place like this and honestly used to love scotch, and I love bourbon, so we would simply sit and talk across the kitchen table,” Tom said.

The walls inside the bar are covered with pictures from the 40s. Some are of Tom’s dad when he served our country, and others are from people who had the photographs in their garage. If you take a close look, you will see images of Asheboro in the 1940s.

The music played is from the same time period.

“We’re finding young kids love it because they kind of have an old soul, and they love the 40s music we got going on. They love doing that makes us really appreciate the fact of what we’re trying to do. What we’re trying to accomplish that is not being that big chain place and just a place we can step back in time,” Tom said.

Leo’s Whiskey bar only holds 25 people. It’s the kind of a place to make new friends or see somebody you haven’t seen for a while.

There is one thing you can’t do at Leo’s: connect to the internet. The bar has no WiFi because the owners look at it as a distraction. They want to come in relax and unplug.

“If you want to step out of 2021 and all the hectic stuff that’s going on around, come here and step back in 1945. When you walk through the door, leave it all behind, stop and have a high-quality mixed drink or whiskey or bourbon or scotch,” Tom said.

The best thing Tom can do is toast his dad.

“He would’ve loved a place like this” Tom said.

Membership for the bar is $1. There are already 500 members who have signed up in the three weeks Leo’s has opened.  

Customers are welcome Tuesday through Saturday at 111 North Street in Asheboro.

Learn more about Leo’s here.

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