Time Out says
These cocktails deserve a standing ovation, which is easy ’cos there’s no seats
Matt Bax has always had a unique vision for bars, from the avant-garde Der Raum (RIP), to low-fi Bar Economico (RIP, too), and the even smaller, Wes Anderson-esque hotel stylings of Bar Exuberante (RIP, three). But it’s the exclusive nature of Bar Americano (alive, woohoo!) that has really stuck with Melbourne.
A disruptive, all-standing, ten-person cocktail bar, it’s modelled after the stand-up Italian cafés where you have a lean, an espresso, a pastry, and quickly leave. Don’t expect to have more than a couple of cocktails here: there’s usually a line of customers behind you waiting to get in and exerting the moral pressure.
The list is unapologetically, exclusively classics. The staff make them with expert precision; Americano has produced some of the city’s best bartending talents. It’s that old adage of not walking before you can crawl. With some years and a strong following behind it, Bar Americano now changes the cocktail list weekly according to season and whim, and stocking their bar accordingly. This makes for more efficient bartending, but sometimes means your cocktail of choice isn’t available due to lack of stock. An Americano, being the namesake of the bar, will always in some way be available, as is an aperitivo of the week. At the moment, it’s the Pilloni Old Grifu gin from Sardinia, which has seen some age in a chestnut cask and is best enjoyed with soda so as not to mask the unique characteristics.
Bar Americano’s new offering is 200ml and 500ml take-home bottles of Negronis, Americanos, Brooklyns and Amaro Americanos – for when you want a seat to go with that amazing, old-world elixir.
Time Out Awards
20 Presgrave Pl
|Transport:||Nearby stations: Flinders Street|
|Opening hours:||Mon-Sat 5pm-1am|