The cheerful colors of Max & Lola’s Bodega can be seen as you are coming down Mint Street in the Gold District. On the corner of S Mint and W Summit, the former gas station and mechanic’s shop is now a quirky, cool bodega. The large and eye-catching mural painted on the side shows the Queen City skyline, and also includes what is sure to be the most Instagram-able spot in all of Charlotte: the angel wings! There are even a couple sets of wings painted a little closer to the ground so your pups can get in on the selfie action.
Speaking of pups, Max & Lola’s is actually named for the owners’ canine companions (hint: they feature in that mural as well!) The bodega is very dog-friendly. The patio out front, which is surrounded by planters, has little carabiners hanging next to the tables so you can easily secure your leashes while you run inside for a beer. Next to that patio, you will find parking for your cars and bikes.
Once you head inside the bodega, you will notice a few original elements from the gas station days, like the Gulflex sign and the large roll-up garage doors. The open ceiling is also a throwback to the mechanic shop days. Mixed in with the industrial features, you will find a lovely eclectic decor full of funky artwork on the walls, tables covered in stickers, and brightly painted chandeliers. It is a fun space that begs you to sit and relax for a while.
Relaxing a while won’t be hard either because there are plenty of things in the coolers and around the bodega to keep you occupied. Max & Lola’s has more than 10 beers and wines on tap, brewed hot, and iced coffee, ready to drink, and a special kombucha tap. They also have a large nook dedicated to bottles of wine, both room temp and chilled. Plus, they have several coolers of bottled and canned beers from local, domestic, and international breweries. Don’t worry, non-drinkers! They also have some sodas and sparkling waters for those that aren’t imbibing.
Hungry? Well, in addition to the packaged snack foods on the shelves, you can find charcuterie plates and artisan cheeses in the cooler, or freshly baked goods at the counter. If you want something hot off the grill, order a couple tacos from the bodega’s food truck that is parked just outside. The menu is posted on the chalkboard behind the inside counter (get the carne asada taco). You can also take your taco, and your puppy, to the shady area next to the food truck. Snag one of the picnic tables and let your fur baby enjoy the grass and the fountain.
I can see this place being one of the go-to Queen City places for spending a chill afternoon. Max & Lola’s Bodega is full of charm, find out yourself!