Favourite local place that no longer exists

Supplied photo

1. Forth Bar
2. The Zoo/Ozzys
3. The Garrick Centre

Forth Bar, once located at 171 McDermot Ave., was a fixture of the Winnipeg restaurant community since it was opened in 2015.

Whether it was in the cozy, intimately lit basement bar or on the rooftop terrace with its incredible Exchange District skyline, Forth Bar was certainly a pleasant place to grab a drink, making it an immediate Winnipeg classic.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the bar also hosted frequent wine nights featuring special menus by favourite Winnipeg cooks that boasted extensive wine lists, including low-intervention wines made by small-batch producers.

During its five-year stint, Forth Bar underwent several changes to management. It was initially opened by Josey Krahn and most recently operated by Elsa Taylor and her restaurant group, Oddlot Co., that owns and operates The Roost and Oxbow.

Taylor says that, in mid-2020, Oddlot Co. entered an agreement with the building owner “to buy the bar over the course of a few years, while he hunted for someone to take over the cafe in a similar fashion.”

At this point, Taylor’s group took over operations at the bar. “The space was majestic,” Taylor explains, noting that it was located in a well-maintained heritage building and that “a lot of money went into its initial construction.”

But, of course, they add, “the people are what did it. They were cool as fuck, and they made drinks properly, while remaining unbothered by bells and whistles.”

“They brought something unique to Winnipeg, and they had fun and they loved each other.”

Unfortunately, Taylor’s company recently had to exit the deal due to “irreconcilable differences” with the building owner. Taylor says Oddlot Co. has other plans on the horizon, which will involve some of the old team from Forth Bar.

“You can catch some of the Forth Bar team shaking up drinks and serving folks at our new spot, Parcel, coming soon!”

Published in Volume 76, Number 12 of The Uniter (December 2, 2021)

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