Corduroy Opens in Eclectic Fremont East District

Corduroy, a quirky, lively bar from the Downtown Project, has opened in the Fremont East Entertainment District in downtown Las Vegas.

The new bar sits in a space formerly occupied by a clothing boutique, Coterie, between two popular downtown hangouts, Beauty Bar and The Griffin.

Corduroy bar

If Fremont East isn’t familiar territory, have no fear. We did a quick walk-through.

Corduroy, which we’re still having difficulty spelling consistently, opened Aug. 5, 2015, and already feels like a hit.

Corduroy

To understand corduroy, you must understand cords and wales. We don’t, so nevermind.

The centerpiece of the 4,000-square-foot space is a large, decorative “bubble wall” behind the bar.

The color-shifting, fluid-based wall is a mesmerizing backdrop for the libations to come.

Corduroy Las Vegas

Corduroy’s wall art is reminiscent of a lava lamp, a phrase we’re pretty sure will keep Millennials busy for the next several minutes, Googlewise.

Here’s a look, as we are clearly lacking in the vocabulary to adequately describe the thing.

Corduroy is an inviting space with a relaxed, unpretentious vibe.

As with too many bars downtown (Commonwealth, Downtown Cocktail Room) and elsewhere, the music is 20 percent too loud to comfortably hold a conversation, but the kids seem to like it that way.

For some time, the plan was to call the venue The Vault, but management thought better of that name as the concept was fleshed out.

Corduroy is a reference to the fabric popular in the mid-’70s to the mid-’80s, and the music at the new bar reflects that era.

The 1970s also served for many of the decorative touches at Corduroy, including a wall of vintage speakers and other audio equipment.

Corduroy Fremont Street

Audiophiles will immediately recognize these items as “old things to set your iPad on.”

Beyond the appeal of the space, the menu at Corduroy is equally memorable.

Here’s a look at the signature cocktails, most reasonably priced in the $9 range.

Corduroy drink menu

Don’t think of it as a drink menu, think of it as a to-do list.

Right off the bat, one must have Sex on the Beach. The sweet, refreshing cocktail is served in a Capri Sun-style juice bag, and costs just $6.

Corduroy cocktail

Things just got all whimsical up in here.

We also tried the amazing Raoul Duke cocktail, with Tanqueray gin, Cherry Heering liqueur, triple sec, Benedictine liqueur, Angostura bitters, grenadine bar syrup, lime, pineapple and a shot of Mezcal for good measure.

Translation: It’s a certified Vital Vegas blog panty-dropper cocktail.

Corduroy cocktail

Fun fact: “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas,” by Hunter S. Thompson, was originally written under the name Raoul Duke.

During our visit, Corduroy’s Moscow Mules and Frontier Mules were being ordered faster than the bartenders could crank them out.

The drink menu also features “Classics” ($10) and “Shooters” ($6.50).

While the food menu isn’t expansive, there are some “Munchies,” including chicken pot pie, Hot Pockets, corn dogs and other quick bites.

When you visit Corduroy, and you should, make sure to fully explore the space.

Check out the classic video game table, as well as the irreverent restroom signs.

Corduroy restroom

We are easily amused.

Behind an unmarked door is a room for photo ops, with converging lights, vanishing point-style.

Corduroy Fremont Street

And we got the Millennials back.

Beyond the main bar and a small stage for DJs, there’s a separate lounge area with comfy furniture and small smoking room. We won’t hold that against them.

Downtown Project, owners of Gold Spike, Downtown Container Park, Inspire and other venues, has a winner on its hands with Corduroy.

Corduroy Fremont Street

Corduroy is no-frills fun. Although if you’re a frills person, do you. It’s Vegas, we don’t judge.

Corduroy seems a perfect fit for Fremont East, and is poised to be a crowd-pleasing, laid-back watering hole for visitors and downtown denizens alike.

Corduroy opens at 4:00 p.m., and operates Wednesday through Sunday.

Corduroy on Fremont East

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  • Luis the Misanthrope

    Good place. I’m impressed but since I don’t drink anymore, I won’t step in. About time we start opening marijuana lounges because that is what I’m waiting for. Also the bubble wall is pretty cool, it reminded me of those bubble toys I played as kid that had little parts moving in them.

  • Bill B

    I admire people who have the courage to open a business like this in such a high risk area & wish them all the best.
    However I would just love to know the failure rate, as here on VV it seems every few days a new bar,etc opens in this area.

    • Fidel Cashflow

      And they stay open. The only bar to open and close was Insert Coins and that was due to poor mangement and ownership. Evel Pie was just a rebrand by teh same owners and tehy are killing it. Every other bar/restaurant has been there for a long time. Especially in that little strip.

      • Bill B

        I stand corrected.

  • Bouldersteve

    That bubble wall is cool and the music is from my favorite era so it’s a done deal for me. FYI..I still have a stereo receiver like the one in the photo..works great

  • Photoncounter

    What? No $18 cocktails? I thought that was a City ordinance after all the other bar openings you’ve covered!

    Will break away from the drudgery soon and stop by. Thanks for great pictures as usual!

  • RustyHammer

    Cheap cocktails and fancy decor with a 70s flavor and loud music? What a clusterfuck of an idea.

    Not a restaurant, clearly. How is it that they don’t have some sort of crust, cheese and sauce offering?

    • Fidel Cashflow

      You suck at the trolling.

      • RustyHammer

        Insults do not further the discussion of the topic. I’m sure Scott will be deleting your comment, based upon his new policy.

        The funny part is that there was no effort to “troll.” I find the overall concept of the bar to be perplexing, which I expressed, and I questioned why a bar that doesn’t serve a traditional menu doesn’t have casserole.

        If I were the type of person to hurl insults, I’d comment on your reading comprehension. But I won’t go there.

        • Fidel Cashflow

          Have you went to the bar? Do you frequent bars? It’s an old school dive bar and it seems like hey do not take themselves too seriously. I went on Sunday, it’s a good spot and was busiest on teh block. They are serving microwavable hotpockets for a couple bucks and have $3 draft beers. You happy paying $18 for drinks and dressing up to go out? OK, I’ll be at the casual and affordable bar thats packed down the street.

          • Photoncounter

            Three beers and a couple hot pockets will cost you about the same as the tax for a bone in ribeye and one beer down on the strip. Both will make a turd 18 hours later but the latter will leave you with expense remorse, unless you’re a snobby elite! My guess is you can whoop it up in Corduroy in your shorts, t-shirt and sandals. Try that at a five star elite restaurant Sparky!

            Make American Dive Bars Great Again!

          • Bouldersteve

            America can never have too many dive bars but i’m not sure if Corduroy qualifies.Where I come from a the dive bars open at 6am. Waiting for 4pm is asking too much for the alcoholic in all of us

          • RustyHammer

            Insults do not further the discussion.

            Your assumptions about my preferences, however, are hilarious.

          • Yeah, they’re doing really well so far. On a recent night, they put 1,200 people through the door. That’s a great sign for the place.

          • RustyHammer

            So you’re keeping insults, but deleting comments clarifying the intent of the original comment? What a hypocrite.

          • Rusty, as I’ve explained several times, I’m deleting comments with the “c” word in them. (Or anything related to that topic in a thread unrelated to Chicago-style pizza, and there has been only one post about that in the history of this blog.) Please don’t go down a path (name-calling or ongoing negativity) where I have to bump you from posting. As I’ve always said repeatedly, I appreciate your taking part in commenting. I’m just running out of patience, so let’s move on.

          • RustyHammer

            Insults are okay on your blog. Thanks for the clarification.

          • Hey, Rusty, what’s the perceived insult here?

          • RustyHammer

            It was not a comment from you. And it wasn’t evern a direct insult. But let’s not dwell on such things. It’s OK to be insulting to others when you comment, I appreciate knowing that. Let’s get back to that great quality content you produce. I’m looking forward to the next podcast.

            Where’s the next great bar going to open up? Will you drop your panties for their drinks?

          • RustyHammer

            But I appreciate you’ve stopped promoting your opinion as a fact. Well done.

          • Photoncounter

            Every dollar spent at a small establishment like Corduroy is one not given to the greedy Strip Corporations. Very happy they’re doing well! If they’re pushing 1200 a night and keeping up with service and getting repeat business they surely have their act together.

    • Bouldersteve

      Do you have a problem with cheap drinks and 70’s flavor..i don’t. As they say if its too loud then your too old.

      • RustyHammer

        Nope, not sure why you’d make such an assumption. I don’t worship the 70s, but I like a lot of 70s kitsch. I’m not a fan of overpriced drinks, either.

        • Fidel Cashflow

          I saw plenty of authentic vintage kitsch and not overdone like Disney. It’s a fun spot and was needed downtown for sure. Loud rock n’ roll music and $3 draft beers, yes please!

  • LVBigBear

    In reference to the food menu, did you mean “expansive” or “expensive”?

  • ElectricGypsy

    Hard to believe all that real estate between Neonopolis and El Cortez was basically worthless 10 years ago. And now everybody wants a piece of the action.

  • Manybar Goatfish

    I really dig that bubble wall. It’s like experiencing a lava flow at close range, but not as painful.

  • Oscar

    Will it still be open 6 months from now? A year?

  • Charles Higgins

    It’s inspiring to anticipate a new joint with a “relaxing, unpretentious vibe”. Vegas needs more of that in my humble and justifiably- nobody-cares opinion. Drink prices are reasonable…70’s and 80’s background music..worth a checkout during our upcoming visit. Good job…
    Cheers!