Just east of Sydney’s city center, Potts Point, formerly known as Woolloomooloo hill, is one of Sydney’s oldest neighborhoods and has always been a popular spot for the rich and famous. Whether you’re staying for a while or just stopping by, take the time to stop for a drink at one of the best bars in the area.
This high class cocktail bar, tucked away in Potts Point, is a new establishment brought to Sydney by The Eau de Vie staple in nearby Darlingshurst. The Roosevelt takes its name from a notorious 1940’s Kings Cross haunt, owned by gangster Abe Saffron, and the whole vibe of the place takes its cue from that era. Glamour and sophistication ooze from the beautiful curved lines and columns in this Art Deco space. Cozy intimate booths, moody lighting, jazz melodies, plush carpets, displays of vintage cocktail glassware and shakers, and eye popping wait staff outfits all add to the exciting, theatrical atmosphere. The bar, or rather the ‘space age’ bar on wheels, comes to your table and the most amazing cocktails are constructed in front of you. Try their signature “Mr Sin”, named after the erstwhile gangster, mixed and served from a gun, or their “Dead End”, a whisky cocktail served in a vintage hip flask. The Roosevelt has a hidden Poker Room in keeping with the Prohibition Era theme. There is also a private function room, master class events, a cocktail matched five course degustation menu, as well as themed banquet menus. This cocktail venue is popular and closes at midnight, so you will need to book ahead.
Another classy bar that’s helping to rejuvenate this part of Potts Point, The Powder Keg is situated in a beautifully renovated building and is run by cocktail maestro Grant Collins. Styled with themes relating to the famous Gunpowder Plot, it is a spacious venue with separate eating and drinking areas. The all important Speakeasy inspired bar is inside at the rear. It is dark, mysterious and intimate. Mood lighting illuminates rows upon rows of different bottles of gin, with over 120 gin varieties on offer and many different mixer options (they even do G&T on tap). If you are looking for cocktail theatrics, order the signature Gunpowder Plot which arrives in a smoke filled bell jar. Bar snacks are available and there is an elegant dining area up front, as well as a cute outdoor courtyard where you can have a quiet romantic evening beneath a fig tree lit by fairy lights.
The Butler is a brand new trendy terrace bar-restaurant, paying tribute to the old Butler celebrity venue here in the 70s and 80s. It is an impressive, light filled, airy space with a casual French-colonial vibe. There are two bars here; one on the main restaurant level that opens out onto a fabulous verandah and another on the upstairs balcony. Both have the most amazing views of the Sydney skyline. Relax at the bright bar downstairs on the chic wicker stools and sample the artistically presented cocktails such as the Air France or La Mule. The venue also offers an extensive range of French wines and champagnes, as well as Australian favourites.
If you are looking for an exclusive, upmarket, intimate venue for a night out or celebration, this is surely the place for you. Velluto exudes class from the moment you arrive at the smart red and black unobtrusive entrance, tucked away on the corner of Fitzroy Gardens.The elegant interior has sleek, polished sandstone walls, dark wood, ornate mirrors, antique style tables, comfy leather sofas and low music gently playing in the background. They specialise in champagne and offer many vintage and non vintage varieties as well as a decent number by the glass. The menu varies according to the season, as do the wines. There is a page dedicated to martinis, as well as a number of great cocktails. With all those classy drinks to choose from, why not order their canapé service for a party or work do? Looking for a bit of privacy? Then there is the private dining room which will hold up to 60 people with total flexibility with regard to choice of food, drink and time of day. Velluto serves High Tea on Sundays, hosts jazz nights, and other events throughout the year. If you have your sights set on nothing but the best, Velluto has it in champagne-bucket loads!
The northern reaches of Macleay Street are alive and kicking thanks to this high end Wine and Dine Bar from owners sommelier Nick Hildebrandt and chef Brent Savage, who also opened Bentley in CBD’s Raddison Blu. The interior at Monopole is stylish, with a sleek open bar and kitchen on one side and dark tables on the other, as well as window seats overlooking the street through a trendy mesh screen. You certainly won’t be disappointed with the wine on offer here, a list of 500 different options that are biodynamic and preservative free, chosen from vineyards around the world. Food is taken just as seriously, with a great menu as well as bar snacks such as beautifully curated charcuterie and cheese plates. The upbeat music and superb service from the hands on proprietors will ensure you have a great night out at Monopole.
Head down to Gazebo if you are looking for a laid back, al fresco setting, where you can relax and watch the world go by. Overlooking Fitzroy Gardens, Gazebo, a well-known place to hang out since the 60s, has recently been renovated, transforming it into a refined and sophisticated venue. There is a large area with outdoor umbrellas for summer days as well as a pleasant interior for when the weather gets colder. While away a sunny afternoon or evening with friends, listening to easy on the ear 80s classics on the playlist. Order a jug of rose and white sangria or a crisp cold wine from the excellent wine list, and share a plate of oysters or crispy squid. The food menu is excellent and on Sundays, Gazebo offers heavenly roasts and jugs of Pimms.