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Grant van Gameren’s opening a cocktail bar in Parkdale

Grant van Gameren's opening a cocktail bar in Parkdale
(Image: Rebecca Fleming)

The doors to Grant van Gameren’s Kensington mezcal bar, El Rey, have yet to open and he’s already got another place on the go. Along with Bar Raval’s Michael Webster and Robin Goodfellow, and the Harbord Room’s Evelyn Chick, he’s opening Pretty Ugly in the old Salvador Darling space. Van Gameren made the announcement last week on Zane Caplansky’s talk show “Let’s Eat,” and shared few details about the new project: it will “serve cocktails the way cocktails should be made,” and the kitchenless bar will have a small snack menu.

What can fans of Salvador Darling and its eclectic decor (a swing, a taxidermied peacock, a framed photo of a naked woman carrying a wolf on her shoulders) expect from the new space? According to Webster, “Take that peacock, a disco ball, me, the wolf-headed woman, maybe some sour beers, a hammer, knee surgery, six months, new grey hairs, a killer sound system, geometric patterns, dopeness and an enchanting open window into a dark sunrise—and that’s Pretty Ugly.” Webster says the bar (other potential names included Broken Dreams, 86 Feelings, Good Grief and Back Again) should be ready by early June, and if not, then “shit’s getting ugly.”

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