383 Carroll St., nr. Bond St., Gowanus; 347-799-2154
The concept for this canal-abutting bar, plotted on a napkin by four young designers, was a tasteful establishment with simple drinks and a welcoming air. What resulted from that Jameson-fueled bro-down was Lavender Lake, a light-flooded bar set in a former carriage house, its name a nod to the nearby waterway’s old-timey moniker. The interior was hand-built by the owners using reclaimed wood and steel, and the menu features cocktails fashioned with local small-batch spirits ($11), rotating drafts ($6), canned Tecate ($4), and tempting bar food (fried gnocchi, housemade potato chips) courtesy of Seattle chef Steve Lohse. Friday and Saturday nights get loud; spontaneous dance parties and surprise D.J.’s (members of Arcade Fire recently spun) are not unusual. Come summer, the light-strung, 1,600-square-foot outdoor patio hosts spit-roasts, movie screenings, and a wine-and-beer station.