The Cocktail Parlour at Storys
The Cocktail Parlour at Storys is a new lounge in the old Storys building in the Club District. The Cocktail Parlour is brought to you by the Plastics of Toronto nightlife, Ink Entertainment and Icon Legacy Hospitality. Boasting over 60 cocktails, The Cocktail Parlour aims to channel the golden era of lounges with a new modern twist.
I visited the lounge on opening weekend, arriving at around 7pm (to make it seem like I had full-time employment) and mingled with all the other cocktail connoisseurs (to make it seem like I had adequate social skills). The interior of the lounge is on the small side but because the ceilings are so high, it doesn't feel cramped. There are booths along the walls and hanging lights that evoke a sense of '20s and '30s glamour.
I would have loved to see even more commitment to that theme - like, say, having to order drinks in code because of Prohibition , servers talking fast , discussion of the new Chancellor in Germany and how that may play out - but of course, when forming a business, usually creating an enjoyable experience trumps historical accuracy (which is probably why historically accurate late 19th-century Irish pubs never did well).
The cocktail menu looks like something Stephen King would submit to his publishers during his Cujo days. It's an actual book with pages upon pages of cocktails, information about cocktails, quotes from literary geniuses about alcohol and the kind of weird art you stare at for hours after coming home from VVL .
With dozens of drinks in separate chapters for the type of booze they contain, the menu is literally the Infinite Jest of cocktail menus (by which I mean it's really long and I never finished it but read enough to smugly name drop characters). I ordered the Paloma ($12), made with grapefruit infused tequila, simple syrup, grapefruit bitters and soda. It was incredibly refreshing and perfect for a hot July day. The Cocktail Parlour also features snacks and shared plates. I sampled the Zucchini Flowers with curried chickpeas and jalapenos. It was delicious, almost like a samosa but with beautiful presentation and much healthier because there's a vegetable in the name.
You can always determine the "Fancy Level" of an establishment based on the modal type of footwear the females are wearing: high heels (very fancy), mid-level heels (fancy), flats (business casual), sandals (casual) and running shoes (you're at a Costco in Mississauga).
Woman at The Cocktail Parlour at Storys were mostly wearing high and mid-level heels, which indicates that it's a place I would return to as more of an after-work celebratory spot (e.g. if I got a raise or a promotion or went the whole day without referencing this tumblr to someone). Just be sure to read the whole cocktail menu or you'll be as lost as Avril Incandenza after the passing of her husband, James Incandenza (oh you haven't read Infinite Jest ? Such a transcendent piece of literature...).