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Owners and notable staff stand in front of a dark green painted tavern with the words Phillips Foote above
Photograph: Supplied/Swillhouse

The group that brought us Frankie's, Shady Pines and Hubert to open wine bar in the historical Rocks

Before a massive refurb in three months, a pop up wine bar will have outdoor dining, live music and European eats

Elizabeth McDonald
Written by
Elizabeth McDonald
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The Swillhouse group have proven time and again as a force to be reckoned with on the Sydney hospitality scene. All-round good times have been had for years at their venues, from rock and roll karaoke at Frankie's Pizza to one too many whisky-apple juices at Shady Pines to upscale and innovative French eats at Hubert. The team are at it again with their newest venture at heritage-listed Phillip's Foote in the Rocks. European wines, alfresco dining, live music and an impeccable tap beer selection will be a stop-gap for the next three months before a massive refurbishment will herald the arrival of Le Foote.

Cheese, cured meats, pickles and olives by Alberto’s Lounge head chef Dan Johnston will be served alongside Aussie and European wines, expertly curated for summer by the group's head sommelier, Gerald Ryan.

CEO and co-owner Anton Forte describes the current history-laden Phillips Foote as a “warren of different spaces, cobblestoned laneways, outdoor dining rooms and classic pub vibes. It’s gnarly and beautiful, rough and sophisticated.” While Forte intends to change a lot about the venue, the spirit and rustic heritage will remain. “We are going to keep the bustly charm and loose atmosphere of the current space, and update the offering to something contemporary, delicious and cool.”

Phillip's Foote launched in 1975, directly across the road from the MCA, and the 1838 building has housed a private residence, an oyster bar and a wine bar over the decades. The Swillhouse incarnation is set to open in November 2021. 

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