September 15, 2017Posted by Bethany Larson Bloch
Melbourne certainly has no lack of a nightlife — with numerous bars, pubs and other niche watering holes peppered around the city and the inner suburbs, everyone has their local and earmarks for a night out. But The HUNT Melbourne writer Amelia Chia’s preferred wind-down spaces are usually dim, stylish and hidden-away lounges that thrive on infusing their creativity into a glass.
Once you find the entrance to Bar Americano at the end of Presgrave Place (look for the blue Tabacchi sign), you’re in for a real treat. This standing-room-only venue is an homage to the time of the “American Bar,” when upper-class Europeans discovered liquid delights in Chicago and New York City. Sticking to their guns and serving only Prohibition-Era classics — with the exception of a Christmas concoction, usually made with port, rum or whisky, and garnished with delish spices like cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg — this is a flawless pint-sized joint for all occasions.
Looking for a spectacular view? You’ll love Lui Bar, perched on the 55th floor of the striking Rialto Towers. The cavernous space is oh-so-chic and decked out with a breathtaking “chandelier” of transparent clouds, created with industrial residual plastic. Amelia’s fancy drink of choice? The Gin-ger Spritz, a spicy and sweet libation that makes for a wonderful aperitif. Come dressed to the nines, because you’ll be surrounded by a multitude of coiffed men and women enjoying a pre- or post-dinner concoction in this stunning venue.
For Old-World opulence, Eau De Vie is just the ticket. This hard-to-find speakeasy is located behind wooden, sign-free doors, but once you’ve made your entrance, expect boisterous jazz tunes and waist-coated staff to politely guide you to a table. Serving up some of the country’s best whisky, lovers of single malts will be overjoyed by their extensive menu. Otherwise, their refreshing Yuzu Mule (vodka, yuzu curd, lime and house-made ginger beer) is not to be missed.
Black Pearl is a sophisticated drinking den filled with locals who enjoy a refined creation. With warm timbers and plush leather banquettes, it’s ideal for groups of friends looking for a place to chill out, or for couples cozying up on a date. Try the Little Squirt, an appealing blend of tequila, yellow Chartreuse, lemon, mezcal, red capsicum and grapefruit soda.
Occupying the corner of Spring Street and Flinders Lane is an amazing sake den that will feed all your sake, whisky and Japanese snack cravings. Hihou is a sleek, minimalist bar with wooden blocks, concrete walls and a long, black marble group table. Their seasonal fruit libations are heavenly (if it’s available, I highly recommend the kiwi) and you’ll have to pair it with their Hihou dog, an arabiki pork sausage stuffed in a soft sesame brioche.
About The HUNT Melbourne Writer: Amelia Chia is a writer and editor whose work has appeared in international publications including Harper’s BAZAAR, Elle, Buro 24/7 Singapore and The Collective. When not burying her nose behind a laptop or keeping up with social media trends, she can be found indulging in one of her four main interests — fashion, beauty, food and travel.