Pint-sized bar crawl

posted on: Sunday, 18 August 2013


The crafty entrance to Grandma's Bar in Sydney


The Rook rocks

Vic risked her new manicure (Chanel Rouge Noir) for midnight pizza at Frankie’s

In Sydney, size matters. It is a city of big monuments, big budgets and big egos. This has generally translated to a nightlife scene dominated by glitzy mega clubs. But recently, Sydney has started to downsize. While I'm in rainy country Ireland, my Foreign Correspondents Gus and Victoria hit up the cocktail trail in sunny Sydney to find out more...

First stop: Mojo Record Bar. First step: locate a hipster standing at an inconspicuous doorway that leads down to a basement. (This step was repeated at every stop on the crawl). Past the record store open during the day is a cozy bar lined with framed record sleeves and tour posters. We sat by Fleetwood Mac, natch. Vic ordered the Lemon Cohen and Gus went for Smells Like Gin Spirit, cocktails which went down so easily we ordered an organic apple cider and plotted where to eat.

Decision made, we headed just a little further down York Street to The Rook, which take pub grub seriously. Over a pinot gris (Vic) and a rosé (Gus), we both decided to splash out on half a lobster with a side of truffle fries and agreed it was worth every cent. Perhaps we should have shared because we had no room left to try the inventive hotdogs at Stitch Bar. But, with a Scotswoman on the crawl, we did of course have room for a 10 year old Glenmorangie whiskey whilst we admired their collection of vintage sewing machines.

Veering off York Street, we made our way to Grandma’s Bar – another basement with a playful kit-out. Amidst a colorful collection of wool, knitting needles and doilies we decided we hadn’t mixed our liquors enough and chose the gin-gin mule (Vic) and blueberry gimlet (Gus). These delicious and potent drinks gave us the necessary boost to trek towards Martin Place and our final stop at Frankie’s Pizza.

Frankie’s is perhaps best visited after midnight, when its slightly dishevelled look must be a comfort to punters who are also somewhat worse for wear by that stage. There are 70s pinball machines, red and white checked vinyl tablecloths, and frozen margaritas from a slushie machine – what better accompaniment is there for a margarita pizza? Order at the bar, get your receipt and wait for your number to appear on the electronic scoreboard and you will get just what you need – a thin base with minimal topping but maximum deliciousness. 

Satisfied, we crawled back to Vic’s digs via Palings Lane, the security guarded alleyway to a cluster of mega-club nightspots. We couldn’t help but chuckle – big is soooo 2008.

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