Bars

1989 Arcade Bar

Late 80s nostalgia and luminous drinks your thing? 1989 Arcade Bar offers a dark 8-bit escape from reality with nerd culture-inspired cocktails and over 40 beers available! Games-wise you can expect a fine collection of arcade classics including the original 1981 Donkey Kong cabinet.

22-24 King St, Newtown

Corridor

This initiate space on King Street combines traditional boozer décor with street art-covered walls; making for a unique experience. The bistro fare and happy hour mean that cheese boards and $7 pints can be enjoyed in equal measure in the sun-soaked beer garden.

153A King St, Newtown

Earl’s Juke Joint

New Orleans comes to Newtown with this deep south Americana cocktail bar. The exposed brick and vaulted iron ceilings are decked out with leather booths replicating that blues bar intimacy. The trendy upmarket menu is cultured but approachable with drinks for every set of tastebuds.

407 King St, Newtown

Mary’s

Mary’s lives just off King Street and is the perfect rock n’ roll joint to crash with a beer and a burger. The menu is to the point as is the vibe, with that heavy metal aura etched into the building’s soul. Exclusively seen in the dark, Mary’s is a friendly space with loud music and great comfort food.

6 Mary St, Newtown

Kuleto’s Cocktail Bar

Indulgent and creative cocktails are primed for fun here as the bartenders serve up some of the more dazzling drinks in Sydney; with a focus on innovative martinis. The rooftop exterior combines with the garden creating a leafy feeling, perfect for sun-drenched days or late-night DMCs.

157 King St, Newtown

Uncle Hops

Located in the Bank Hotel, Uncle Hops is an encompassing beer connoisseur. This casual traditional pub oozes charm and friendly sophistication. Over 10 craft beers are available on tap as well as barrel-aged spirits. If you’re hungry there’s pub-grub all accompanied by rustic vinyl sounds.

324 King St, Newtown

Mountain Goat

An unapologetic industrial setting gives the Mountain Goat unmistakable authenticity. After all, they’ve been brewing craft beer here on King Street since 1997! At any one point, there are 12 taps to choose from and a decent cocktail menu too! This casual brewpub also offers a wide array of grub for all occasions, including steak and bougie pizza.

435 King St, Newtown

The Midnight Special

The Midnight Special is a very apparent nod to the San Francisco dive and neighbourhood bar scene. However, the founders didn’t want to just implant American culture; moreover stamp the Newtown community on the San Fran template. Live music is promoted to the forefront with a packed weekly schedule, never creating a dull moment.

44 Enmore Rd, Newtown

Websters Bar

Fancy choosing from 700 whiskeys to sip on while on a third-floor rooftop terrace? Websters Bar offers such hedonism with a somewhat refined pallet. Striking somewhere between the casual and formal complex, this eccentric hive invites patrons to regular whiskey tasting sessions – accompanied with fine meats including tender steaks and succulent ribs.

323 King St, Newtown

Stillery Bar and Dining

33 Cross St, Double Bay

Rooftop Bar at InterContinental

33 Cross St, Double Bay

The Fox Hole

After-work drinks in downtown Sydney might never as been sophisticated until the Fox Hole opened its doors on Erskine Street. The extensive menu is complemented by knowledgeable staff who take pride in having over 100 gins behind the bar. The weekend takes a slant on afternoon tea, with its infamous Gin and Tea experiences.

68A Erskine St, Sydney

Since I Left You

Since I Left You is tucked between heritage status buildings in the central business district. Once uncovered there’s more than meets the eye as this urban courtyard not only serves up gourmet toasties; but has hip-and-happening events illuminated by distinct fairy lights. Expect bougie cocktails to accompany poetry slams and disco nights.

338 Kent St, Sydney

Jackalberry

Just a few steps from Darling Harbour, Jackalberry has imported culture from around the world to assemble a refined yet diverse offering. Explore flavours from across multiple continents as this high-end interior offers great comfort. Make sure to visit during the happy hour for scrumptious $8 cocktails!

161 Sussex St, Sydney

Zephyr

How does a sky-high harbour view with oysters and a rum cocktail sound? Zephyr might be the place for you should you desire such pleasures. Situated on the twelfth floor of the Hyatt Regency Hotel, this rooftop cocktail bar has crafted experimental cocktails to match the stunning views. Bookings are suggested for all events, including the popular Yoga mornings!

Level 12/161 Sussex St, Sydney

Establishment Bar

Walking into Establishment Bar is quite the experience, the central pillars, vaulted ceiling and marbled interior give it a distinct Ancient Rome feeling. The architecture alone is worth visiting but the menu will make you stay considering the incredible Thai-Australian fusion menu which has produced such favourites as the chicken schnitzel.

Ground Floor, 252 George St, Sydney

The Captains Balcony

What this snug three-storey bar lacks in size, is more than made up by a collection of liquors to make any mixologist drool with excitement. The Captain’s Balcony emphasizes its vast collection of whisky with over 20 Japanese whiskies alone. If that’s not your tipple, then there’s a lot more available including a hunger-inducing burger menu.

46 Erskine St, Sydney

Uncle Mings

Have you entered an underground realm from Blade Runner? Uncle Mings is a gateway to oriental hedonism with dumplings, tempura prawns and spring rolls to whet any appetite. Of course, you’ll need something to drink, here you can board a shinkansen of Japanese alcohol with sake, plum wine and yuzu liqueurs.

Basement/49 York St, Sydney

Stitch Bar

Stitch Bar blends the locality of the cool harbour drinking culture of Wynyard with inspiration from late-night New York diners, giving a unique Australian-American experience. The shelves boast an impressive amount of liquor – and if you’re hungry, take a bite from the US-led menu containing hot dogs and burgers.

61 York St, Sydney

The Baxter Inn

Looking for a cultured drink with vintage Americana? The Baxter Inn gives off an aura of 1920s American prohibition from its design and its playlist containing exclusively blues and jazz. Whisky is the preferred drink here with many to choose from. The Baxter Inn believes in living in the moment – so just turn up as there’s a ‘no booking’ policy.

152-156 Clarence St, Sydney

Burrow Bar

This basement bar was nominated for Australian Bartender Magazine’s Bar of the Year, which speaks of its pedigree when serving up exceptional cocktails. Indeed, other drinks are available, but the ever-growing spirit collection (usually as wide as the interior wall) is enough to tempt any hardened beer drinker.

Basement / 96 Clarence St, Sydney

RAMBLIN RASCAL

Want to sink into a leather booth with inventive cocktails? Ramblin Rascal is a  self-proclaimed dive bar that has a speciality menu dedicated to the award-winning whisky distillery, Balvenie from Aberdeen in Scotland. Ease into your seat as you ponder the 20 or 30-year reserve while the band tune-up for the next number in this lively whisky bar.

Basement/60 Park St, Sydney

Cantina OK!

A small container situated a few streets from SEA LIFE, Cantina OK! particularises in agave spirits and subsidiary Mexican cocktails. Drinks come in all shapes and sizes as the menu changes at pace. Offerings seldom sit on their laurels and neither will you as there are no seats as guests are encouraged to stand and mingle with one another.

Council Pl, Sydney

Grandma’s Bar

Who doesn’t love visiting Grandma’s? Groovy decorations from yesteryear, enough biscuits as you want and delicious cocktails. Ok, maybe there’s a distinction between your grandma’s house and Grandma’s bar – but the same principles apply. There are kitsch unchallenging cocktails and side dishes to ensure you are suitably watered and fed.

Basement/275 Clarence St, Sydney

The Hold

Nautically-themed and crammed as full of delicious dishes as a tea clipper, The Hold is the place to go if you have the appetite of a sailor or the thirst of an old salt. A Shipmate’s Share of cocktails we let you set sail across a menu that includes burgers, bowls and all manner of “smaller things.” Vegan options abound as well. If you’re a old sea dog or a Mary Rose, The Hold will hold something for you.

24 Sydney Rd, Manly

Donny’s Bar

Escape from the bright lights of the big city into the warmth and comfort of Donny’s New York-style loft bar. Inspired by the colours and tones of the Australian bush pared with the sophisticated chic of the Big Apple, you can relax over drinks, go small with California-style snacks, or go big with a Tex-Mex feed and a few cervezas. America has come to downtown Manly and set up in style…so can you!

7 Market Pl, Manly

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Hemingway’s

Taking a cue from the writings of the old sea dog himself, Hemingways is a jazzy and snazzy French-infused restaurant and bar with a window on the water of Manly Beach. Grab a late breakfast, a long lunch or an anytime dinner and savour the flavours of France cooked with distinctly Australian flair and ingenuity. Winter “raclette” nights bring warm, cozy comfort dishes to Hemingways, while those long Manly summers provide a perfect backdrop to a dinner out on the terrace.

48 N Steyne, Manly

Wharf Bar

Where the city meets the sea, Manly’s Wharf Bar dishes up tucker for hungry passers-by, strolling couples, post-session surfers and anyone else looking for a cold beer, a chilled wine and a good feed. Pub grub essentials such as barramundi, steak and seafood are augmented at the Wharf Bar by imaginative pizza toppings, kingfish salads and various vegetarian options. Tie up at the Wharf Bar and watch the tide go in and out – literally and figuratively – for an hour or an afternoon.

E Esplanade, Manly

The Cumberland

This Spanish-style speakeasy, hidden behind an innocuous fridge door in a corner deli, features over 250 different whiskeys, an extensive wine and beer menu, and a ranged of cocktails inspired by Prohibition-era America. On the menu are charcuterie share-boards and tapas dishes you can pair with any sort of [il]legal booze you can name. But remember…shhhhh, don’t tell anyone!

17/19 Central Ave, Manly

Little Felix

You might be on Ash Street in Wynyard, just a few streets from the Opera House – but Little Felix transports you to twentieth-century Paris. Champagne from a magnum, a daily selection of French cheese and vintage wines enrich an already suave affair. Oh and if that isn’t enough, the sommeliers are all dressed to the nines as well.

2a Ash St, Sydney

Old Mate’s Place

What else could want than a library-saloon rooftop cocktail bar? Old Mate’s Place offers all such pleasantries with an ever-growing collection of plants to delight any budding botanist. The cocktails are vibrant and the meats are varied. Many however tip the Devil’s Three-Way Cheese Steak as a solid choice.

level 4/199 Clarence St, Sydney

PS40

If you’re looking for juicy innovative cocktails then PS40 might be the place for you. The sleek monochrome design adds to the mystique hidden in the daily changing menu. Look out for the Breakfast Negroni, a cocktail that gained great popularity it now has its line of merchandise!

Enter via: 40 King St, Skittle Ln, Sydney

Tilbury Hotel Woolloomooloo

Located at 12-18 Nicholson St, in the heart of Woolloomooloo, the Tilbury Hotel caters for smaller groups with a fresh and contemporary menu. They are currently serving a summer a la carte menu (think “Soy Spatchcock”  with Chicken Jus, Yuzu Kosho, Mustard Pickles, Seaweed Rice) as well as a magical (and less expensive) bar menu. Dine comfortably indoors or out.

12-18 Nicholson St, Woolloomooloo

Malt Shovel Taphouse

Located within an impressive 2-storey, old-world dining hall replete with Belgian memorabilia, The Malt Shovel Taphouse is known for its mussels and quality draught lagers. They also have an excellent restaurant that features a rotisserie kitchen.

135 Harrington St, The Rocks

Blu Bar on 36

One of Sydney’s iconic cocktail bars, Blu Bar on 36 is a Cosmopolitan lounge that showcases incredible views of the Sydney Harbour via its soaring windows. It is celebrated for its classic cocktail range and exceptional menu of bar bites.

176 Cumberland St, The Rocks

Bar Mille

Just a 3-minute walk from the BridgeClimb Sydney, Bar Mille is a hip and stylish multi-level entertainment venue located within the original 1856 Rawson Institute for Seamen building. It serves up cocktails, beers, wine and great music.

Ground Floor/100 George St, The Rocks NSW 2000

Mrs Jones

Home of some of the finest cocktails and most delicious meals in Sydney, Mrs Jones is a lively and contemporary open-air space that looks over a sandstone courtyard. It offers a menu of fresh local produce, superb drinks and warm hospitality.

1 Kendall Ln, The Rocks

The Push

Located at the gateway to The Rocks, and close to the Sydney Opera House, The Push serves up classic cocktails, craft beer and wine. As well as delicious share plates & fabulous burgers, in an intimate art deco space with a lovely atmosphere.

143 George St, The Rocks

Maybe Sammy

One of the most notable venues on Harrington Street, Maybe Sammy is often considered in conversations about Sydney’s best cocktail bars. It serves up a great menu of beers, cocktails, wines and share plates, in an chic bar with live music.

115 Harrington St, The Rocks

Hotel Palisade

Entering the bar at the Hotel Palisade is like stepping back in time. A place full of character it features a congenial atmosphere and warm and inviting setting that is supported by an extensive drinks selection and a very good food menu.

35 Bettington St, Millers Point

Imperial Hotel

Since 1983, The Imperial Erskineville has been an icon and an institution of the LGBT+ community. In March 2018 after a much-needed nip and tuck and a deluge of love, this national treasure reopened to showcase her new look and keep the good times going.

Watsons Bay Hotel

Long summers were made for Beach Club, where seaside weekends sail into sunset parties. The sun seems brighter in our beachside playground, good times spill down to the waterfront, and days are filled with tastes, laughter, drinks and friends. With the harbour spread out before you, lazy lunches flow into afternoon cocktails, excellent pub food, then the sun says farewell with a pastel spectacular across the skyline. After dusk, Beach Club’s heartbeat rises as summer sounds and glittering gatherings illuminate the shoreline.

The Long Goodbye

Film noir-inspired bar with classic cocktails and house-made liqueurs on Stanley Street. Recommended as one of the top bars in Sydney by the SydneyCityGuide team.

The Bearded Tit

Vibrant bar and art space with quirky decor, including wall-mounted animal heads and gilt mirrors. One of our favourite bars in Redfern.

Arcadia

Easygoing hangout with an upstairs terrace, serving up light bites & hand-crafted cocktails. A favourite of many Redfern locals and one of the most popular small bars in the area.

York Lane

Want a coffee? Want a cocktail? Given the opening hours, you can join York Lane for your morning flat white then an espresso martini after work. Eco-conscious owners have made an effort to repurpose old materials; with effective use of old salad bowls as lampshades! The food menu is known for its heavy cheese content with favorites including the nachos.

York Ln, Sydney

Papa Gede’s Bar

Want a coffee? Want a cocktail? Given the opening hours, you can join York Lane for your morning flat white then an espresso martini after work. Eco-conscious owners have made an effort to repurpose old materials; with effective use of old salad bowls as lampshades! The food menu is known for its heavy cheese content with favorites including the nachos.

348 Kent St, Sydney

The Lobo

Enjoy your rum? Look no further than the Caribbean-themed bar, the Lobo. The welcoming interior speaks of riches from across the seas; comfort is most welcomed considering there are over 250 types of rum to choose from – the decision is worth considering. In addition, you can peck at the offerings from the Cuban kitchen with sandwiches and cured meats available.

basement lot 1/209 Clarence St, Sydney

Kings Cross Distillery

Located on Macleay Street, within the site of a former adult bookstore, that was also previously a speakeasy and illegal gambling den, the Kings Cross Distillery is all about gin. Their signature beverages are inspired by a recipe from 1937.

Shop 8, Llankelly Place, Potts Point

Best Bars in Sydney

Sydney has a number of outstanding bars. Infact they are so good that 3 of them are currently ranked among the best 50 in the world. So when it comes to going out for a drink in the Emerald City you are definitely spoiled for choice. There are a number of factors that make the bars in Sydney so good. The quality of the drinks they offer is obviously key, as is the food too. But other things like the location, décor, views, atmosphere, live entertainment and even the type […]

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