LOCAL Houston | The City Guide August 2016 - Page 24

CLUB•ICE HOUSE•LOUNGE By Mike Cook Photography by Daniel Ortiz OUR LITTLE SECRET In French, “canard” means duck, and duck is a food we happen to quite like (Food Issue on the mind). Anyway, canard, when using the more common American use, is “a belief or rumor that is not true.” But we’re not here to tell you about more restaurants (Food Issue’s got that covered), or start rumors. Our CANARD is a different story, a story about a hidden cocktail bar on N. Main like no other in the city. Fortunately Treadsack (Down House, Bernadine’s and Foreign Correspondents next door) looks to have had some extra room next to Foreign Correspondents, and plenty of extra gusto; Canard is the result. Or maybe it was the goal all along. Either way, the dark (only a bit of light comes in through door and windows), beautiful, French-style bar, adorned with purple cloth, teal walls and a mirror backed bar, is quite the surprise when you enter the deeply tinted doors just below the neon purple duck “open” sign. Or enter through the purple curtain from the Foreign Correspondents side because why not. The interior is also adorned with fresh flowers and ducks (of course); champagne bottles, perfectly French glassware and brass lighting help it glow. Seating is in rounded booths or on straight-up elegant bar stools. If you didn’t already infer, Canard is pretty intimate, but that’s just part of what makes it special. The other part? The cocktails and the service. Like mind blown. The Smoke Signals, holy crap. Basil Hayden Rye with lemon, apricot, ginger and honeycomb cordial and lavender laphroaig sprayed across the top for bouquet with a cherry on top. Yeah, that’s extensive, and rightfully so, as the entire bar seems like a monument to rare and special liqueurs and spirits. And the staff brings them to life. They go out of their way to make the detailed menu of Quelle (seasonal house cocktails) and Optics seem simple. Those Optics – bold, strong blends – are quite the treat; just take a look at those four-glass dispensers. Don’t worry if you’re a stickler for original cocktails or sparkling wine, Canard spins classic cocktails and a choice sparkling list. Shhh, the crowds still have not found Canard, so keep this one to yourself. You’re in for a treat. CANARD | 4721 N. Main St. www.treadsack.com/canard Sun, Tue–Thu 4pm–12am | Fri–Sat 4pm–2am 24 L O C A L | august 16