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The Dead Canary, Cardiff

Barrack Ln, Cardiff CF10 2FR, UK
The Dead Canary Review
5 Star Rating
4 September 2017The Dead CanaryTags: Cardiff, UK, Cocktail Bar reviewsThe Bill: £43 per head

Our most recent discovery is a secret cocktail bar, hidden behind a small black door at the rear of some parking garages in Cardiff. Before you even step foot inside, Dead Canary gives you the feeling that you’re about to enter somewhere quite special, and dare I say, hip.

The décor inside Dead Canary is simply beautiful and it’s almost like stepping into a vintage antiques shop off Portobello Road, yet you're being served masterfully created cocktails. This feels like a private members club, which wouldn't look out of place in London's Soho; in fact, I really wish this was located in London as I'd certainly be a regular member.

I began our evening by sampling a Black Knight cocktail, which consisted of Nettle and Skullcap syrup, Star of Bombay gin, Amaro Montenegro, Manzanilla sherry and lemon, topped with blackcurrant sorbet. The bitter edge of the alcohol in this cocktail was taken away by the sweetness of the fruit; making it a complimentary blend of flavours.

“The cocktails at Dead Canary are both intriguing and well-made.”

My partner chose the White Dragon to start, which is a blend of Portobello Road gin, sauternes, Suze, mead and tarragon tincture. This cocktail is very dry, but with a hint of honey sweetness which was absolutely delicious.

Up next, I chose the Son of the Sea, which saw Death’s Door gin, Ccochi Americano, Ceylon Arrack, olive brine,R32;Anglesey sea salt and seaweed. This is an unusual combination, but one that really works, and offers lovely earthy depths that go very nicely with the olives it comes served with.R32;R32;

My partner then chose the Maiden of the Meadows, which is a combination of passionflower, Hennessey cognac, Becherovka, bergamot, lemon and soda. This long drink was very refreshing with classic flavours and a citrusy twist. It was expertly made and an absolute triumph.R32;R32;

Finally, I chose the White Knight which saw Glenmorangie 10 yr, Ardberg 10yr, strawberry and vanilla mead,R32;Benedictine, orange and Angostura Bitters. This was an aromatic, smoky cocktail that was both sweet and sour; very complex and very pleasing indeed.

R32;R32;My partner’s final drink choice saw a Red Dragon; a blend of Evan Williams single barrel, malbec, Cynar, Yellow chartreuse and habanero shrub. This could almost be a Christmas cocktail with complexity of the oaky whiskey with tastes of orange and spices and a dry finish.

The cocktails at Dead Canary are both intriguing and well-made, and we could not fault our visit. We only have good things to say about this latest find, which I only wish we had found before now.

Photos courtesy of The Dead Canary
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