The Lodge Wine Bar
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A Balmain bar offering wine and cheese in elegant surrounds
In a suburb dedicated to pubs in all their guises, this tiny, subterranean wine bar is going for the gentlemen’s vote. Blood-red velvet drapes are drawn aside to let the light filter in through the hanging plants that decorate the raised outdoor terrace. Sink down into a leather armchair and take a look at the wine options for the evening. The system here emulates that of Gerald’s Bar in Melbourne, whereby the first six wines ordered become the by-the-glass options for the day. We’ll buy that for a dollar. If you’re very particular, we suggest getting in early to ensure you get first pick. The little open kitchen at one end of the bar pumps out bar snacks like nuts, olives and chicken liver parfait, as well as a handful of larger meals, including a steak, that come in just shy of $20. On a Wednesday night the kitchen gets to flex its muscles a little with a five-course tasting menu, or you can keep it simple with a glass of vintage port and a wedge of triple-cream brie. The cheeses are eight dollars for one, $13 for two or three for $17. Need something with more kick? There’s nothing foamy, creamy or outrageous on the cocktail menu to distract from the classics. We’re talking Negronis, Martinis, Tommy’s Margaritas, Sazeracs and Sours. The soundtrack is vintage easy-listening, the vibe is Mad Men after hours and the cheese is plentiful – it’s high time you took up residence at the Lodge.
3/415 Darling St
|Opening hours:||Tue, Wed 4pm-10pm; Thu-Sat 4pm-11pm; Sun noon-5pm|