Poetry Lower Westside
Poetry Lower Westside is bustling with eclectic jazz bands performing on a weekly basis along with a drink menu inspired by the genre's famous artists.
This West Queen West spot succeeds Poetry Jazz Cafe in Kensington Market, considered a jewel of the city for its intimate, late night performances that have spanned over the last decade.
After 10 years, owner Sean Pascal feels ready to venture into new neighbourhoods with the Poetry brand, saying the original location has lived out its potential.
"I want to travel with the music, meet new customers and start from scratch again," said Pascal.
The new business definitely lends itself a lot more breathing space compared to the OG Poetry Jazz Cafe, meaning less crowding and a lot more seating.
The stage here remains pretty small and sits close to the audience so you're still getting that intimate experience with the music.
Most of the drinks from the Kensington location have transferred over here with just a few new additions.
Another change: Poetry Lower Westside has a kitchen featuring local food pop-ups every week, a standard menu is on the way as the place continues to develop.
The type of jazz you'll find on the stage differs from week to week, but during our visit we watched local musician Alexis Baro and his quartet play the night away with Latin-inspired sounds.
Sipping on drinks here, expect to pay $14.00 for everything on the cocktail list except for those using premium alcohol which will add another $3.00.
Back to Black ($14.00) named after Amy Winehouse's album, combines a mix of spiced whisky and sweet vermouth with fresh lime and bitters.
It's simple but remains spunky in taste and definitely fits the vibe for what to sip on at a late-night jazz club.
Poetry Lychee Martini ($14.00) isn't too complicated either, a heavy helping of vodka (easily detectable by taste) mixes with Soho lychee liqueur, both sweet and strong.
Spritzer Poetry ($14.00) is a new addition to the cocktail menu from the original location. It's pretty similar to the look and taste of an Aperol Spritz, but Poetry put its own spin on it.
A blend of Prosseco and Campari makes the base of this drink which is then topped with sparkling spring water.
Food is a new venture for Poetry and for their first shot, they're not doing too bad. We ordered this shareable plated of deep fried, grated pieces of potatoes ($10.00) that are served on a spicy mayo with soy sauce, peanut sauce and chili oil added to it.
Although new to the West Queen West nightlife scene, Poetry Lower Westside will remain without a sign. When the music starts playing, the owner hopes people will be inspired by what they hear and want to come inside and explore.