This Secret Cocktail Bar Would Make For An Odd Escape Off The Drive

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Restaurant Porn is a regular column of daydreams presented as a means to introduce Vancouver diners and designers to concepts, looks, and fully-formed ideas that they might draw an inkling of inspiration from. We do our best to pair the foreign rooms with local addresses so as to let everyone in on the daydream.

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(via) There’s a lot that goes into making a cocktail bar special, but it almost always starts with the setting of a mood that loosens inhibitions and relaxes by way of atmosphere. Making it “secret” allows for an even more controlled environment, a place where generalized, broadened tastes don’t necessarily have to be accounted for or catered to. Perhaps there’s no music. Or maybe’s it jazz. Looking at the pictures above and below, I imagine the soundtrack as being more romantic: a loop of Vivaldi string concertos; Bach at the rowdiest. Either way a surreptitious hideaway should be different. This looker in Italy knows what I’m talking about…

What it is: Mr. Simon is a 25 seat secret cocktail bar named after its resident barman, Simone Maion. Launched in 2017, it was designed from the brand up by Italian agency Visual Display.

Where it is: Hidden behind the broom closet of a neighbouring business in Udine (a city in Italy’s northeast, pop. 100,000). The access code changes daily and the exact location is supplied only after reservations are made.

Where we wish it was: Somewhere unexpected out of the downtown core, like The Drive. We’d put it either behind or underneath chef Doug Stephen’s Merchant’s Workshop at 1590 Commercial Drive.

Why we wish it was there: 1.) Because it isn’t downtown or Gastown 2.) the beef tartare at Merchant’s is really good and maybe you could sneak it in 3.) the old Alvarado Block – built in 1912 – has beautiful bones.

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Photos: Virginie Foubert Photography | Visual Display

There are 2 comments

  1. This looks the Keefer bar moved into a slightly more spacious dungeon outfitted with your nonna’s hodge podge furniture. In other words an instant classic.

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