Restaurants / Openings

A First Taste of Apothecary — The Chic Spot Slinging Fun, Extravagant Cocktails on Lower Greenville

The Owners of Rye Put the Focus on Drink Making at Their Latest Venture

BY // 07.29.21

In 2018, friends Tanner Agar, Nic Cain, and Taylor Rause teamed up to open Rye in historic downtown McKinney. The craft food and drink concept quickly became popular in the North Texas suburb, and with adventurous Dallasites looking for a new destination to try. Always planning to one day expand to Dallas, the trio got lucky when real estate opened up in Lower Greenville during the pandemic.

The second Rye location is set to open on August 25 in the former Laurel Tavern space. In anticipation of the opening, the team recently opened their cocktail-forward concept next door (in the former Wah Wah Room) called Apothecary. A chic bar featuring some of the most unique concoctions you’ll find in the city, the new spot is a must-visit in the Dallas cocktail scene.

Apothecary lets the trio get creative with their cocktails. “At Rye, our goal is to bring in new flavors and techniques, but we had been feeling a little limited when it came to cocktail recipes,” Agar tells PaperCity. “Apothecary is opposite of Rye. Cocktails are in the driver’s seat and the food has to fit in from there.”

The cocktail menu is divided into three sections: “Over the Counter,” “Prescription,” and “Illicit Elixirs.” Apothecary cocktails also benefit from the high-tech equipment (think centrifuges and liquid nitrogen freezing) the Lower Greenville spot has on hand.

Apothecary Dallas
The Only Fans cocktail at Apothecary is a frozen creation of tequila, passionfruit, lemon, and cassis “caviar. (Photo by Megan Ziots)

From the breezy, cheekily named Only Fans, a frozen tequila, passionfruit, lemon, and cassis “caviar” drink, to the daring R-Oaxaca-Fort (with blue cheese washed mezcal, house mole liqueur, bitters, and a white chocolate cricket), thing go from tame (relatively speak) to adventurous quickly.

For those on the fence about getting too crazy, the Octopus’ Garden (tequila, nitro muddled mint-sage basil,, peated scotch, and a charred octopus tentacle) provides a good middle ground. Other interesting drinks include the fun, smoky High Horse, a bourbon drink served in a bowl with hay that is then lit on fire.

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As for Apothecary’s food menu, dishes are shareable and things you can eat with your hands. On a recent visit, the Chicken 65 was a favorite. It’s two pieces of naan, each with rum brined chicken thigh and curry 65. Order with the Flamenquine, which is three fried cheese sticks, including iberico ham, pork tenderloin, jalapeño cheddar, and peri peri. Another must-try is the Oyster Not Oyster, which is three brined oyster mushrooms, candied fresno, brine foam, and chive. Finally, don’t leave without ordering the Candelabra. Served in an actual candlestick holder, it is three cakes of angostura bitter chocolate, Clover Club (raspberry-forward), and piña colada flavors. Everything is edible (except the holder, of course), including the wicks which are made of hemp.

Apothecary Bar Dallas
Apothecary just opened in the former Wah Wah Room space in Lower Greenville. (Courtesy)

“We want people to embrace conversation here,” says Agar. Re-designed since the ’70s-inspired days of Wah Wah Room, you’ll now find peacock wallpaper and lots of loungey chairs and couches. “We found all of the furniture and plants at estate sales and thrift stores. It’s important that our spaces feel lived in.”

Lanterns hanging from the ceiling are dimly lit and and vibey music plays as the bar gets ready to open at 5 pm on a Wednesday night. There are intentionally no windows and a small black-curtained room when you walk in to make it feel like you’ve just entered an entirely new world. “We want it to feel like you’ve been taken,” says Agar.

Agar won’t tell you what his favorite cocktail is when asked. “We want guests to come in and tell us what they like,” he says. “We’re a zero risk bar so if you don’t like it we’ll get you something else, but we want to instill a sense of adventure and awaken something in our guests.”

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