Le Pub Balmain
As I got stuck into an excellent crusty French-bread take on Sydney’s obsession with miniaturisation - Le Petit Dog ($6) with lamb shoulder, lime labne, green chilli jam and coriander - the ladies at the next table mused: “I guess if I order a Grilled Chicken Salad ($18), I won’t feel so bad about the wine.”
While the outward facelift hadn’t attracted my attention, the steampunk interior of this Pyrmont stalwart made me smile. From boilerplate bar, to repurposed materials like cracked leather stools and a railway signboard listing two dozen on-tap Aussie craft brews, it was hard to take it all in!
Vic on the Park
In my ever-widening search for a pub with something different, I’m forced to admit I might have misjudged the humble slider. This fast-paced yellow kitchen - clearly delineated with a suitably hipster font - produces four winning Sliders ($20/4) from a repertoire of six.
Pulling into The Forresters on Friday night, the place was rammed. Luckily my intention was traipsing up the stairs to Queenie’s, their Jamaican-inspired domain. Cute-as-a-button waitresses wearing eclectic combinations of braids, hair wraps and tropical shorts were quick to make us feel at home.