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The Duck Nest: Slick new cocktail bar set to take flight

PUBLISHED: 15:24 24 July 2019

Cocktails served at The Duck Nest. Picture: Stephanie Wolff.

Cocktails served at The Duck Nest. Picture: Stephanie Wolff.

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Styled as an early 20th century Parisian boudoir, The Duck Nest will serve cocktails, wines and beers upstairs from the fledgling Monsieur Le Duck restaurant in Clerkenwell. Co-owner Richard Humphreys brings us up to speed.

The Duck Nest is based upstairs from Monsieur Le Duck. Picture: Stephanie Wolff.The Duck Nest is based upstairs from Monsieur Le Duck. Picture: Stephanie Wolff.

It's going to be different, that is for sure. When The Duck Nest opens above the rustic Monsieur Le Duck restaurant from Wednesday, July 31, the vibe will be notably more opulent and stylish.

"It's basically a really sexy space," says Richard Humphreys, co-owner of the venue at 27 Clerkenwell Road.

"We'll keep the curtains closed, there's crushed velvet, French jazz and a well-dressed bartender making fantastic cocktails. It's perfect for dates, but also drinks with friends."

The Duck Nest is styled on an early 20th century Parisian boudoir and, much like the duck-based cuisine downstairs, will focus on the 'douceur de vivre' (or 'sweetness of living') of Gascony, in south-west France. The bar's opening coincides with the launch of the restaurant's duck-fat washed Armagnac, which is a world-first.

Richard Humphreys is co-founder of Monsieur Le Duck with David Humphreys and Paul Luke.Richard Humphreys is co-founder of Monsieur Le Duck with David Humphreys and Paul Luke.

This new cocktail bar will open from 5pm to 11pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and will be available to book for private events for between 20 and 60 people.

"You get transported to a different world up here," explains Humphreys. "It's a portal back in time. It's not just casual drinks, it's not a plain and ordinary bar. You feel like you're somewhere unique and different."

Monsieur Le Duck itself is a fairly new venture; established by three frequent travellers to Gascony in June, after a six-month pop-up on Brushfield Street proved such a hit. Aiming to give a taste of "the French heartland of relaxed eating and drinking," sample plates downstairs include Duck Burgers and Confit De Canard.

"We want to distinguish ourselves with quality, sometimes you wanna have a really nice drink in a really cool setting," says Humphreys, previewing the cocktail list.

First look at the bar inside The Duck Nest. Picture: Stephanie Wolff.First look at the bar inside The Duck Nest. Picture: Stephanie Wolff.

"We've also got wine from all the major growing regions in France. We've gone kind of French-themed (throughout), but there's also enough in there to fit all tastes - there's a rosemary-infused bourbon with honey and lemon that's gorgeous as well. We'll serve cocktails that fit with the environment."

The Duck Nest officially launches above Monsieur Le Duck, 27 Clerkenwell Road, EC1M 5RN on Wednesday, July 31. More details here.



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