Wednesday night we had a group of friends over to dinner. Before our meal, we took them to a bar called Patent 5 near our home in the Exchange District. We wanted to treat them to a celebratory cocktail to mark the fact that we will celebrate our wedding anniversary this weekend. Patent 5 is located in a former stable.
The Dominion Express Company, whose name you see over the front door of Patent 5 was a parcel delivery business. It was founded in 1873 in Winnipeg and built its headquarters at 108 Alexander Avenue in 1904. The stable area for the company’s horses and wagons has been converted into the Patent 5 Distillery and Bar.
Patent 5 offers a menu of interesting and unique cocktails using vodka, whiskey and gin they make on-site. The name is a reference to the kind of still they use to produce their alcohol. It is based on an 1869 design by James Wilson who was issued Patent #5 for his invention.
The interior of Patent 5 is steeped in history as well. All the oak paneling, doors, window frames, chandeliers, and stained glass were taken from the fabled Oak Room at the St. Regis Hotel built in 1911. The hotel closed in 2017 but the beautiful interior of the Oak Room has been preserved in the design of Patent 5. The chairs in Patent 5 come from an old Presbyterian church in Melita, Manitoba and your cocktails are served in vintage crystal glasses.
A former Eaton’s Warehouse built in 1926 is across the street. You can see the signature letter E above the door. We had a great time at Patent 5. It was very fitting to drink a toast to the history of our marriage in such a historic place.