Welcome to the prettiest live music pub in the land, with the most excellently ridiculous name. The stage at the Rare and Reclusive Oft Neglected Lesser Spotted Mallard is the crowning glory of a grand space with bright parquet floors that was formerly used as a ballroom. Now, lampshades and a mirror ball hang down from a high ceiling with a stained-glass skylight at its heart. It’s here hipsters, urban cowboys and old ducks come for toe-tapping folk and swing bands, surf rock and even some cabaret acts. But what makes the place tick over is that the entertainment isn’t left to fend for itself. The food steers a little Mexican, and delicious. It might be lamb shoulder slow roasted with cinnamon and served with black beans, and they’ve also got a whole poutine menu – that’s Canada’s gift to drinkers of chips and gravy, usually with cheese curds, here covered in duck debris. Come early if you want to chat quietly – it’s one big hall and you won’t win against the music, but there's always the wrought iron balcony overlooking Sydney Road. It’s an all craft all-star line-up on the taps too – Red Hill, Holgate, Prickly Moses, Two Birds and other local craft heroes rotate on the lines. They stock the arts-program-funding bottles from Cake wines too. Not all is lost for live music in Melbourne when there are placed like this. Shine on, feathered friend.
|Venue name:||The Spotted Mallard|
314 Sydney Rd
|Opening hours:||Tue-Fri 4pm-1am; Sat 2pm-1am; Sun 2pm-11pm|