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Springthorpe & Co. to open Magnet, a new beer-focussed taproom

Magnet restaurant and bar to open at 309 West Pender

The crew that gave us Gastown’s legendary Alibi Room and Mt. Pleasant’s popular Brassneck Brewery are currently building a new restaurant in the old EXP Restaurant & Bar location at 309 West Pender Street.

I spoke with co-owner Nigel Springthorpe in the 3,000 sqft space during the rainstorm yesterday afternoon. He told me that Magnet – that’s the name of the new, beer-focused, counter-service establishment – has been in the works since July. “We’d been looking for the right unicorn spot for 2 to 3 years.” he explained, showing me the plans by local architecture/design firm Simcic + Uhrich while pointing out how the previous tenants had only put in 50 seats. “Our occupancy will be closer to 90.”

It’s a cool looking space that dates back to the area’s boom time between the Great Fire and the First World War — lots of brick and high ceilings. At Nigel’s request, we won’t be publishing any wide-angle shots of the interior during this stage of Magnet’s development, but I can tell you that it will see a variety of seating situations, from corner cloisters of hideaway deuces and bar height communal tables to a row of wall-hugging booths and window stools. Local artist Perrin Grauer will soon start on some colourful installation work, and the branding (which I haven’t seen yet) is being done by Post Projects.

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Categories: Pubs & Taprooms

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