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.
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.