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The East Brunswick Hotel

Bars Brunswick East

Time Out says

The reopening of this Lygon Street pub is a win for locals, but don't expect the grungy venue of old

Many a tear was shed when the East Brunswick Club closed down in 2012. The original venue was a well-loved live music venue with a grungy reputation for hosting Melbourne's newest talent as well as serving damn great vegan parmas. Now, it's back as the East Brunswick Hotel.

There was an uproar when it was announced that property developers were going to erect an apartment block at the site. The old bandroom and bottle-o will still be sacrificed for the new development, but new pub owner Ron O'Bryan, who previously owned Collingwood's The Vine, has given the pub a completely new look. Gone are the sticky carpets and dark lighting, replaced with white tiles, neon light fixtures and plenty of blonde timber.

Fans of the original venue may be thrown off at the sight of chandeliers and Scandi-chic bar stools artfully arranged in the downstairs bar and dining area, but there are throwbacks to the original East Brunswick Club with a feature wall of music posters, and exposed bones and brickwork that has witnessed the old bandroom's best shows. Upstairs, however, there's no trace of the old pub. The cocktail bar and private function room is all about modern textures – buttery soft leather, marble bar counters and more chandeliers. Further up, 12 (yet-to-be-completed) hotel rooms are named after filmmakers, writers, and explorers, with the decor in each room (including the Eastwood and Hemingway rooms) set to pay tribute to their namesakes.

Food-wise, the menu (by ex-Libertine chef Nick Creswick) doesn't stray far from pub favourites but they're definitely amped up. The Trailer Trash sandwich takes you to man food heaven with a combo of pulled pork, mac 'n' cheese and barbecue sauce on a white roll. The hearty steak options take care to let punters know whether they're grass fed or pasture raised. The signature East burger offers no surprises but is a good basic burger when all you want is a decent patty, complemented with shoestring fries. If you're feeling traditional, stick to the Classic Counter Attacks section, where you'll find a chicken parma (free-range, of course), ale-battered fish and chips and a pie with creamy mash.

By: Delima Shanti



Address: 280 Lygon St
Brunswick East
Opening hours: Mon-Wed 11am-11pm; Thu-Sat 11am-1am; Sun 11am-11pm
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