The owner of hit Old Montreal cocktail bar the Cold Room is back with a tiny new project in the coming weeks: Kevin Demers is planning to open El Pequeño, and he says it’s going to be Canada’s smallest bar — with room for just nine customers at a time.
“It’s going to be simple, really classic, we want to show what we can do in a small space,” Demers tells Eater. “We just want to have some fun with it.”
Pequeño (which fittingly means “small” in Spanish) is to be located right next to the Cold Room’s door on Saint-Vincent Street in Old Montreal, across from pizzeria Bevo. Caribbean rum is to be the focus — Demers and the Cold Room team (including bar head Daniel Boulianne) will have a correspondingly small menu of just six cocktails: three Cuban-style classics (think mojitos and such), and three more original rum creations. Rum tastings will also be in the works.
An even tinier food service option will be in place — the bar will also sell a Cuban sandwich, with a small number of variations available. Demers notes that he’s considering selling these out of a window in the bar to mitigate the fairly obvious space constraints.
The space itself is just 150 square feet, with room for 11 people — nine customers plus two staff. And while there might not be much floor and wall space to work with, Demers says he’s going “all out” with the design.
“This space is really going to show what we can do, I transformed the whole place into a an old school looking, high end Havana hotel [bar] that’s a little worn out.”
“I bought a 1950s chandelier from the Queen Elizabeth [Hotel], the floor is made out of marble…it’s going to look like we took a small part of Havana and plugged it into Old Montreal,” he adds.
One-time pro hockey player Demers has been busy opening bars of late: in recent weeks he opened up another Old Montreal spot, aperitivo lounge Alfie’s, located on Saint-Sulpice.