When I first saw the billboard for Gatsby downtown, I thought it was an advertisement for a new show on the CW. I was wrong: It's actually a new downtown Dallas nightclub opening in the space that was formerly occupied by Plush. As eyeroll-inducing as the idea of a Gatsby-themed nightclub may be, it looks as if this new joint is going to be a significant improvement on its predecessor.
As CultureMap reported last week, Gatsby is a project from Ross Edinboro of The Standard Pour. Edinboro is joined by a silent partner, named only as "Jay Gatsby." High-end libations of all kinds, with a particular emphasis on scotch, bourbon and tequila, will be available by the bottle, but no word yet on whether or not craft cocktails will be part of the offerings.
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Instead of a Champagne room, Gatsby has an entire Champagne floor, complete with private balconies and a list of the fanciest French Champagnes, including Veuve Cliquot and Armand de Brignac. We're guessing you're going to have to have Jay Gatsby-type cash to pick up a bottle of one of these, because we all know how horrid nightclub markup on booze of all kinds is, not to mention the price-gouging that goes on in the Champagne world.
More interestingly, Gatsby also hopes to compete with speakeasy-style cocktail lounge Midnight Rambler, its next door neighbor. Gatsby spokeswoman Teresa Nguyen told CultureMap that Gatsby's basement space will be converted into a separate lounge-style concept tentatively called Parlor, complete with a full kitchen. Hopefully, that means more late-night dining options downtown, a neighborhood painfully devoid of anything decent to eat after midnight.
Though it's going to be mostly a nightclub, the prospect of Parlor is pretty interesting. Dallas needs another "speakeasy" like it needs another highway, but the combination of quality cocktails and excellent bar food has proven to be a good formula for a number of concepts like this, including Uptown's So&So's. Or, it could end up being just another place with puke-stained curtains and Molly dealers. Time will tell.