Sydney bars don’t come more spectacular than this fully restored century-old church now hosting hop-lovers and hearty-food fans. Pork knuckles and mega-schnitzels abound, all sent to their maker on torrents of excellent Bavarian amber. Beyond its dining room of long tables and stained glass is the beer garden, a cool space perfect for sinking steins of Hefe-Weissbier or Stiegl Goldbrau on a summery day.
There’s no missing Coco Cubano, owning the corner of Church and Phillip streets in a fragrant haze of tapas aromas, coffee, chocolate and cigar smoke. Inside, amid photographs and ephemera, you’ll find locals clinking Cuban highballs or Mojitos (made to he-man author Ernest Hemingway’s own recipe) or grazing on petit fours while they consider puffing on a Cohiba Siglo II (Castro’s choice)… and revolución.
This wine bar-brewery-restaurant has a princely position overlooking the river and the convict-built Lennox Bridge. The vibe is Mediterranean and balmy nights on their wine deck gorging on prawn pizzas, pan-fried snapper and 500g T-bones are mighty appetising. If fruity cocktails, 18 beer types and a 1998 Dom Perignon champagne in the cellar don’t whet your appetite, there’s a microbrewery set to be unveiled in 2013..
A classic pub with lots of booths and bar-side seating, the Rose has a corker of a casual diner with pot pies, panko-crumbed schnitzels and Angus beef steaks. The bloke who built the hotel in 1843 was one Robert “One-Armed” Green, a lively lad whose lone hand fought (and lost) at the Battle of Waterloo and who is buried at All Saints Church next door. Raise an amber to Mr Green when you pop in.