I've been in Sydney for over two months now, and I've tested out a fair few bars since I arrived. Of course I'm likely to find 'new' favourites over the coming months and/or years, hence the 'February 2017' part of the blog post title ;) But for now, these are my firm favourites in the CBD and Inner-East area of the city, and the ones I keep going back to again and again. I live in Paddington and work in Surry Hills, so I always tend to go out in the inner-east and CBD purely because it's close by to my work and home.
Obviously this isn't an extensive list as I haven't visited every single bar in Sydney, but out of all of the ones I've visited, these are hands down my faves and I highly recommend visiting them. I've listed them on order of how much I like them, so start at the top and work your way down ;)
1. The Barber Shop
The Barber Shop is a very close first with Big Poppa's (below), but The Barber Shop wins purely because the cocktails are better, and the barmen are super nice! It's a speakeasy Gin bar that you enter through a darkened closed barber shop, you simple walk through the barber shop towards a big metal wall at the back...slide the wall, and in you go! Sit up at the bar for the best experience, and feel free to ask the barmen to make you something off-menu - they really know their stuff!
And the best part? The barber shop that you enter through, is an actual working barber shop during the day!
89 York St, Sydney NSW 2000
2. Big Poppa's
This is the BEST place for hip-hop music. I mean, best for Sydney anyway. It's nothing compared to NYC and London, but far better than most Sydney bars-cum-clubs. Big Poppa's is actually a restaurant and therefore the lockout law doesn't apply to them...head downstairs to the bar and dance the night away.
96 Oxford St, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
3. Shady Pines Saloon
Perfect for every whisky lover, Shady Pines is SO awesome (and I don't even like whisky). It's hidden down a quiet back-street, and is a cowboy themed bar that really reminded me of the Inception Group bars in London. A great date spot!
4/256 Crown St, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
4. Darlo Country Club
The Darlo Country Club is perfect for dancing the night away with friends, it's a large and rather classy bar in Darlinghurst that makes you feel like you're in a fancy country club in 1950s Los Angeles, and the DJ is always awesome. The bouncers are really nice (a rarity), and the crowd is mid-twenties to early thirties (which is great for me and my friends). Lockout laws do apply though, so last entry is at midnight, and it closes at 2am on Fridays and Saturdays, and midnight Wednesday-Thursday. Apparently their weekend brunch is also really good, but I haven't tried that yet!
235 Victoria St, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
5. The Clock
The Clock is near my office in the effortlessly hip Surry Hills. There's a pub section, a Whisky bar, and the most adorable outdoor area that looks like it belongs on Pinterest. The staff are friendly, the food is decent, and the drinks are great. Go on a Friday evening for drinks, and then walk round the corner to The Beresford for dancing later on.
470 Crown St, Surry Hills NSW 2010
6. The Establishment
The Establishment is one of those 'Wow' bars. You walk in and the interior and architecture blows you away. Part of the Merivale group (basically the Aussie version of D&D in London), it has a huge indoor space and a really lovely outdoor area too. The cocktails are brilliant, and they do an amazing Frose (frozen rose)!
252 George St, Sydney NSW 2000
7. Soda Factory
I LOVE this place. The cocktails at Soda Factory are incredible, it has an amazing vibe and atmosphere, and it's on my way home from work. They have some good DJs and live music on every so often, and typically play RnB and hip-hop. You enter the bar through an unassuming little entrance that looks like a tiny 1950's American burger joint/shake bar, and the door down to the bar is a giant soda machine. Also the burgers are amazing.
16 Wentworth Ave, Surry Hills NSW 2010
I know I know, a bonus one, but I just had to include it...so, bonus number eight is...
8. Intercontinental Rooftop Supper Club
The Intercontinental Rooftop is the type of bar you go to for one drink with friends visiting from out of town. The view is incredible, the cocktails are fantastic, but the atmosphere is non-existent. It's very chilled out and a little soulless. But LOOK at that view.
117 Macquarie St, Sydney NSW 2000
What's your favourite bar in Sydney?
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