The Kennedy-Uptown connection

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Bars don’t get much cozier — or considering this year’s 50th anniversary of Dallas’ most infamous date, more timely — than the Kennedy Room, a redone unused corner space at the ultra-exclusive Montaigne Club on Maple Avenue in Uptown.

There’s lots of old wood in this space the size of a Dunkin’ Donuts, and some taxidermy and framed illustrations too. And some admirable ambitions about providing a low-key neighborhood watering hole. Also, hella pennies under glass.

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If it weren’t for the repurposed office chairs lining the modestly stocked bar, you’d swear you were in some Ivy League crew team clubhouse. A clubhouse with a portrait of John and Jackie Kennedy above the Grey Goose and Grand Marnier.

To be fair, the bar has been soft-opening all week, still taking shape for Friday’s official grand opening. As I sat at the bar nursing an uncomplicated bourbon-on-the-rocks with friends Manny and Jerry, last-minute store runs were still being conducted to pick up necessary items; meanwhile, a handful of martini glasses were summoned from the bar’s sister restaurant, the nearby Old Warsaw.

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Mixologist Joseph Buenrostro, formerly of San Francisco Rose, plans to populate the bar shelves with Texas-produced beers and spirits. A full menu of house drinks should be live by Sunday.

So if you find yourself wandering off McKinney Avenue, ask not what you can do for your thirst: consider easing it with a Kennedy Room tipple.

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— Marc Ramirez, 1-11-13

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