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One of the winter greenhouses at Smoke
Photograph: Supplied

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

A killer rooftop bar in Sydney

July 2023 update: This winter, Barangaroo’s rooftop bar Smoke is transforming into a gorgeous forest-inspired wonderland, complete with three pop-up greenhouses decked out with pine trees and moss-covered branches. The magical translucent greenhouses are weather-protected, so they’re warm and cosy inside, making them the perfect place to take in the sunset over the harbour with your best mates (and a few cocktails, of course). 

Speaking of drinks, Smoke’s team has created three new cocktails for the pop-up, including a Huntsman’s Highball with whisky, habanero tincture and spiced orange ginger ale; Red Riding made with whisky, beetroot vermouth, Italicus bergamot and tangerine; and Forest Sour with whisky, apricot brandy, carrot syrup, lemon and tamarind. All the drinks feature Glenmorangie’s latest whisky, A Tale of the Forest. Keen to go all out? Choose the Smoke Signature Package, which comes with three cocktails, and three bar snacks including fresh oysters, togarashi popcorn and pork belly baos. 

The pop-up is running until July 23, and is available to book Tue 3-10pm; Wed-Sat 3pm-midnight; and Sun 2-10pm. Smoke’s greenhouses are available for exclusive group bookings of five to ten people. Round up your gang, and enjoy a special night out this winter. Book here

-Avril Treasure


Read on for our original review of Smoke from 2018 by Emily Lloyd-Tait

It’s only once you’re sitting on the beautiful deck of this third-floor cocktail lounge that you realise that it was the missing piece of Sydney’s bar puzzle all along. Until now, we’ve only been playing at being a global, harbourfront city, because our high stakes waterfront drinking was limited to fancy hotels and Opera Bar. And for pre-theatre drinks, there’s still nowhere better than the latter, but we’ve also seen staff members bat seagulls out from the concourse using a drinks tray.

So the Solotel group went and made Opera Bar a suave sister in the form of Smoke – the crowning glory of Barangaroo House. Up here, things are strictly professional. You are greeted at the entranceway, shown to a seat, started a tab and possibly given a time limit until the next booking arrives (they do not follow the finders keepers rules here). Mind you, a kind word to the chic floorstaff in black can result in another table as it becomes available.

All of this careful service makes drinking here feel like more of an event, and not unlike a restaurant experience, so you my as well order up a serve of Wagyu hanger steak skewers plumbed with an iron depth and salty tang and wearing a velvet soft warrigal greens sauce. It’s a steak dinner in under six bites. Skewers of chicken skins cooked until crunchy and seasoned will shame chicken salt into nothing but a memory, and the oysters here are so creamy they’re positively lewd.

Order with confidence from the cocktail menu here. Cool down with the Little Leichhardt, a tall, funtime mix of rose gin, white vermouth, limoncello and blood orange soda capped with a sweet snowball of Campari sorbet. It’s packed with citrus, but all the hard edges are polished to a golden glow. And if you want to be courted by a tequila cocktail, the Smoke’n’Screens will sneak it past you disguised with lime juice, a cherry stain and smoked rosemary. More cocktails are over 20 dollars than under, but they’re made with a finesse that might make you rethink your ten dollar Peroni in a glass only slightly larger than a schmiddy.

Now that we have a rooftop, waterfront cocktail bar of this calibre, it seems madness that we have gone so long without one. Now your only issue is beating the crowds to get the glory seats out in the sunshine for peak Sydney drinking.


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Written by
Emily Lloyd-Tait


Level 3, 35
Barangaroo House
Barangaroo Ave
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