Today I decided to dive into the former nightlife along Peachtree Street and discovered Stein Club.
“We’re Not Buckhead” the bar proudly proclaimed while keeping glasses filled at 929 Peachtree Street. The pub attracted a mix of hippies, bikers, artists and beer lovers.
Donna Brown, a former regular of the bar, recalled her days at the Peachtree tavern. “The Stein Club was probably the highest IQ bar in the world,” she said. “There were artists, there were writers, journalists and also ne’er-do-wells, but they had the combination of being well-read.”
The Stein Club displayed a variety of steins around the bar. Regulars could even bring in their own mug to enjoy their favorite brew. According to former manager George Faulkner, “you used to be able to come in and bring one of your own steins. We’d put them in the cooler and when you can in to drink a beer, you could drink out of your very own stein.”
Another popular draw to the neighborhood bar was the juke box, offering a diverse selection of tunes from classical to current.
Proposed developments and high rent forced the midtown bar out of town. After one “last gasp”, Stein Club closed its doors on June 10, 2000.
“I just don’t know if we really improve things by tearing them down,” said former owner Chris Lautz. “With all of the lofts coming in around here, its going to look just like a suburb soon.
Within a year of closing, Stein Club was razed and construction began on Metropolis, ushering in the hi-rise condo craze on Peachtree Street.
The two, 21-story towers of Metropolis, would include 498 residential units and 40,000 square feet of retail space. Completed in 2002, the developer followed in rapid succession with new developments down the street, Spire (860 Peachtree Street) and Viewpoint (855 Peachtree Street), before the Great Recession hit.
Lautz, who owned the bar for its last 11 years, had hoped to open Stein Club II in Downtown near Castleberry Hill. Unfortunately, these plans never materialized, and Stein Club regulars were left to find a new watering hole.