From the hustle and bustle of the happening streets of Capitol Hill, I step into Canon’s 33-seat watering hole with its dark-wood finishes, black leather booths, gramophone, old school cash register, Prohibition articles and other 1920s knick knacks on the wall. Along with bartenders clad in tightly knotted ties and vests, I feel like I have been teleported back to the 1920-1933 era of the so-called Noble Experiment.
Owner and former Vessel bartender Jamie Boudreau’s motto is “classic cocktails, sharable bites, unmatched hospitality.”
The cocktail menu immediately grabs my attention and I have a hard time deciding between cheeky drink names such as the hanky panky, self starter, and the italian buck. I go with the latter as I am a sucker for any drink that is mixed with ginger beer (in this case, with cynar, amaro, and lime) and potentially equipped with a hot European dude.
The other side of the menu is filled with beer options ranging from bitburger lager to Belgian ales. Still uncertain about what to get? Go roulette style by naming your base spirit and let the bartenders figure it out for you.
In the gluttonous spirit of bigger is better, I want to order the ”fishouse punch deluxe” that is a mixture of rums, cognac, bubbles, muscovado, citrus served in a big ol’ glass punch bowl, but it is too big of an undertaking for a lightweight like me. $75 gets you a lot of booze and likely a big hangover, unless you share it with 4 people as is the recommended minimum.
Another standout – For $12, a flight of mini-manhattans dubbed ”the vermouth experiment” with dolin, chinato, & punt e mes can be yours.
With eight items on the regularly changing food menu, this 3-week old joint looks like a reasonable place to grab an appetizer or a light seasonal meal so go along with your stately cocktail such as the Meditteranean mussels with sweet tomatoes, wine, butter, celery, onion crostini and the gnudi (aka- ricotta dumplings) with shitake mushrooms and mustard greens.
I think the bartenders’ sharp Prohibition garb along with their congenial personalities and great eye contact are a big hit as I overhear someone at the bar referring to the drink masters as ”adorable.”
I will be back with friends to get my fix of the fishbowl and will aim to show up on the earlier side as Canon is a petite-cozy joint. There are six tables that surround Canon’s perimeter and about a dozen bar seats.
Address: 928 12th Ave, Seattle, WA
Hours: Open 5pm-2am daily