Tony Palombino’s successful Mod Mex bar, restaurant and honky-tonk music venue, Manny & Merle’s, has undergone a transformation into Merle’s Whiskey Kitchen, renamed to denote its reverence for its Whiskey Row location at 122 W. Main St., and to highlight the renovation and expansion of the dining and performance space. To mark all this activity, the new Merle’s will host a VIP kick-off event Monday, Oct. 24 from 5 – 9 p.m., with the celebrations continuing through Thursday, Oct. 27.

Renovations to the space feature a larger outdoor “Merle’s Backyard’” patio, with a bar, fire pit and adult games. Inside, the restaurant has a larger stage, added seating and a private dining room, and an updated menu.

Each day next week the restaurant will offer specials, giveaways, and prizes, and will be pouring several one-of-a-kind single barrel bourbons to go along with the 100 bourbons they currently offer. There will, of course, be live music performances most nights during the celebration, featuring Nashville bands as well as local talent playing the rawer, honky-tonk style of country that has been a hallmark of Manny & Merle’s.

For more details about the celebration week, go to or call (502) 290-8888.