Meet the owner

Rush Lane, a burgeoning Queen Street West cocktail bar established in July 2014, is owned and operated by a group of young yet experienced award-winning bartenders. The partners and bartenders include Hennessey’s master mixologist Jordan Bushell; serial cocktail competition winner Simon Hooper; Doug Twigger, formerly of the Thompson Hotel’s Rooftop Lounge; Brett Kyszejko, who helped design the interior; and Chris McCrabb, formerly of The Chase and SpiritHouse.

These dapper devotees of drink are passionate, knowledgeable, and serious about service. They are also inventive and innovative - Rush Lane features one of Canada’s only laboratories dedicated to cocktail creation. The laboratory features a rotary evaporator that helps concentrate flavours, a refractometer for measuring and altering sugar levels, and a Cline Bell ice machine that can create 300-pound ice blocks.

“Every bartender here has a different style but we all collaborate on our cocktails and enjoy creating new drinks,” Jordan says.

Read the story of Rush Lane & Co.

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Appears in 7 Smart Lists

Editor’s Pick
Best Restaurants for Nuit Blanche in Toronto

Best Restaurants for Nuit Blanche in Toronto

Rush Lane is another original and intriguing bar that’s open until 2am. Featuring “Canada’s only laboratory dedicated to cocktail alchemy,” the drinks here contain a lot of ingredients you’ve never had or heard of (you might want to bring a dictionary or be ready to ask a lof of questions). For instance the FluggaenkoCcoehioebolsen ($14) contains Boomsma Genever, Wray & Nephew Overproof-Rum, Luxardo Apricot Liqueur, Lemon and Sage.

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Low-lit locales: Romantic cocktail bars in Toronto

Low-lit locales: Romantic cocktail bars in Toronto

It’s easy to spot this Queen West locale by its colourful, mural-clad exterior, and the drinks inside are just as fun. Flavour combos range from aromatic beet and gin in the Beat It cocktail to Mount Gay Black Barrel Rum, black tea and cherry wood-smoked coconut in the Downtown Chester Brown. Drooling yet? Get comfy on the parlour-esque sofa at this funky little cocktail bar nestled in between Chinatown and Toronto’s Fashion District. Classic cocktails are done oh-so-right here, but we’d suggest sampling one of the invented-in-house options dreamed up the expert mixologists.

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Ring in a low-key New Year's Eve in Toronto

Ring in a low-key New Year's Eve in Toronto

When it comes to New Year celebrations, Rush Lane may just have it all: a celebratory atmosphere backed by mouth-watering gastropub fare and a seriously impressive list of beer, wine and cocktails. This cocktail bar is the only one in Canada to have an actual laboratory dedicated to the pursuit of cocktail innovation, so you can place yourself comfortably in the bartenders' skilled hands. There will be music to get you bouncing in your seat, a feature menu and cocktails followed by a midnight toast (complete with top hats!), and fun, fun, fun all the way to last call.

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