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St Patrick’s Day Cocktails at Eau-de-Vie Bar, Darlinghurst

Author: Posted on: March 18, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Every once in a while, you find a place that makes a lasting impression yet it leaves you with a dilemma. Do you tell the whole word about it or keep it as an intimate secret? Eau-de-Vie Bar is that kind of place.

Rarely do we review the same establishment more than once but Eau-de-Vie is worthy of an exception.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

On the evening of St Patrick’s Day, we forego the customary pint of Guinness in a Sydney pub and head to Darlinghurst for Eau-de-Vie’s St Patrick’s Day Specials, and an occasion to toast Mr G’s heritage.

The mood is surprisingly demure except for the hearty welcome behind the bar, just as it was on our first visit. There is a scattering of couples huddled in dark corners and a small group of people near the bar. We choose a quiet spot then give up our intimate seating along  cushioned banquettes for the ambience of the bar.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

The bar stools are worthy of a mention. They are very comfortable to sit on and are an accessible height for the vertically challenged like me. There’s even a ledge that fits a handbag comfortably.

The specials for the evening include three Irish themed cocktails at $12 each. Guinness, at $10, is also on the list, but one goes to Eau-de-Vie for the cocktails.

Black Velvet is described as a “heady mix of Guinness and Chandon NV” but it is the Tipperary that captures our interest. This is an Irish classic, made with stirred Jamesons Whisky, green Chartreuse, Sweet Vermouth and served in a coupe glass with citrus rind.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst
Tipperary ($12)

This is not a mild cocktail by any means. You get the strong taste of the whisky followed by the lingering botanicals finish from the Chartreuse. A most satisfying cocktail, one that can easily lead to another.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst
Tipperary ($12)

As much as the cocktails have a wow factor, Eau-de-Vie is about the entire experience. The charismatic Phil Gandevia, aka Dr Phil,  is behind the bar and we start chatting about drink preferences, Martinis and spirits of choice. He tells me about the evolution of Martinis from being very dry to the addition of more Vermouth and suggests I try a 50-50 ratio of Vodka to Vermouth, stirred with a lemon twist.

As much as I drink Martinis like water, they can wait for another night. We decide to try something different and leave it in the hands of Dr Phil.

Mr G opts for a Tequila-based cocktail, something a little on the sour side.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst
Toreador ($17)

Toreador, a Margarita style drink, is made with Herradura Tequila, Apricot Brandy and lime juice. The similarity to a Margarita is rather mild. This drink is a lot softer on the palate than the kick you get from the marriage of Cointreau and Tequila. An enjoyable cocktail,  served in an old fashioned glass.

In contrast to Mr G, I am in the mood for something dark, mysterious, with a strong flavour. And as Dr Phil has gathered by now, I like to watch.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

I note muscovado sugar, cinnamon, star anise, Ron Zacapa Centennario rum and El Condado Pedro Ximenez sherry. There’s a glass resting in a metallic mug, a Brandy balloon kept warm and I anticipate something will soon be set alight.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

A spectacular show begins with a spirit flamed in one metallic mug, then poured into another, and again until the flame subsides. The Ron Zacapa Blazer cocktail is served warm with a cinnamon quill, orange rind and star anise.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst
Ron Zacapa Blazer ($24)

One sip of the spicy cocktail sends a wave of warmth through the body. This is a drink to enjoy in front of a fireplace with someone you love, or sitting across someone else with eyes full of lust. And just like waning desire, as it cools down, it releases different flavours that leave you feeling good.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

If you can prise your eyes away from the cocktails, you’ll see that the attention to detail also lies in the décor, the choice of vintage glassware and general bar paraphernalia. Copper mugs are used to serve the signature Yuzu Mule, which we reviewed after our last visit. A water fountain graces the communal table. A sexy silver measure rests atop a glass waiting for a spirit to be poured. A pink paper aeroplane rests on top of a rhubarb-based cocktail.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst
Pour Homme, Pour Femme($30 for 2)

Presentation is a key component of the cocktails. Pour Homme, Pour Femme is a cocktail for two, served in special his and hers cocktail shakers and poured in different vintages glasses. Pour Femme, we are told, is the one on the left, and it is usually the man who shakes the libation before pouring it into the glass.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

To finish on the St Patrick’s Day theme, we choose the Nitro Irish, Eau-de-Vie’s version of Irish Coffee made with Jamesons Whisky, Guinness Syrup, Coffee and topped with saffron and vanilla foam.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

Nitro cocktails are always spectacular and I am torn between watching and taking photographs. This Irish coffee is beautifully presented in crystal mugs with a solidified yellowish foam that is eaten with a spoon like ice cream. Delivering a strong caffeine kick, this is one rich and luscious Irish coffee that demands an encore with a standing ovation.

Eau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst
Nitro Irish ($12)

As we stated in our first review of Eau-de-Vie, this is the kind of place you’d take someone on a first date, make it a regular haunt for a date night or impress someone who is passionate about the art of cocktails. You can find an intimate dark corner, order a few drinks and have a memorable night out as we did on our first visit. Alternatively, you can choose a different experience if you sit by the bar, chat with the energetic team whose passion for their work is admirable, watch, learn and take (mental) notes.

If you choose the latter, you should be warned. Sitting by the bar will give you a vantage position. Every cocktail that is made and poured into elegant glassware will leave you yearning to try everything on and off the menu.

Eau-de-Vie Bar DarlinghurstEau-de-Vie Bar Darlinghurst

With thanks to Dr Phil for an exemplary experience and for offering the additional lighting to enable us to take photographs.

Eau-de-Vie Bar
229 Darlinghurst Rd
Darlinghurst Sydney NSW
www.eaudevie.com.au
Eau de Vie on Urbanspoon

Corinne

Corinne is the founder and editor of Gourmantic. An avid scribe, she has taken pen to paper since the age of five. Her repertoire includes long works of fiction, short stories and travelogues.

She is a winner of the GT travel writing competition, has judged the Australasian Whisky Awards for 2013 and several cocktail competitions. She is also named in the Australian Bartender Most Influential List for 2013.


This article is posted on Gourmantic.com. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2014

St Patrick’s Day Cocktails at Eau-de-Vie Bar, Darlinghurst was last modified: June 19th, 2014 by Corinne

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26 Comments to “St Patrick’s Day Cocktails at Eau-de-Vie Bar, Darlinghurst”

  1. [...] – Don’t miss our second review of Eau-de-Vie Bar: St Patrick’s Day Cocktails at Eau-de-Vie Bar, [...]

  2. nikel says:

    Nitro Irish look nice and so special..

  3. Akila says:

    Wow! The Nitro Irish looks amazing – very cool and different way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

  4. Tuula says:

    Ok, how cool is that nitro Irish? Well, looks like that whole places just oozes “cool” – and I agree, those are not light cocktails by any means! Perfect for long nights of lounging in those lovely chairs :)

    • Corinne says:

      It’s cool with substance and not for the sake of being cool. From the moment you go in, you’re there for a treat – and you don’t want to leave :)

  5. Looks very quiet for St. Paddy’s Day. :-)

  6. Nicole says:

    I can see why you keep going back. So many interesting and inventive cocktails to try!

  7. We’re not really into cocktails but these look special. I’m glad there were some with an Irish feel to them! :) I think I would have gone for the Nitro Irish. and how kind of Dr Phil to make the lighting better for your photos! :)
    Julia

    • Corinne says:

      It was very nice of him. He saw me taking photos and asked if we were from a website or a blog, and when I sheepishly said yes, he produced a hand-held light and lit up the cocktails – we’re very lucky as it is very dark in there. It goes to show you can celebrate something Irish without the usual Guinness :)

  8. [...] list leaves me undecided. With my recent liking for full-bodied cocktails such as those I had at Eau-de-Vie Bar and Emmilou Tapas Bar, I decide to go Omakase, meaning Chef’s Choice in Japanese and ask the [...]

  9. [...] with spicy chorizo and pork belly, a selection of cheeses and petits fours are served from the Eau-de-Vie Bar kitchen, and as the formal testing part concludes, there is an opportunity to mingle, share [...]

  10. [...] like the St Patrick’s Day cocktails at Eau-de-Vie Bar, it was all nitro and safety gear for the Zabaglione cocktail, made with a good dose of espresso, [...]

  11. [...] Grandma’s Best Wine Bar: 121 BC Best Pub: The Old Fitzroy Best Design: Gardel’s Bar Hot Talent: Phil Gandevia Best Entertainment: FBi Social Best Bar Food: Gardel’s Bar People’s Choice: The Corner House [...]

  12. [...] Cocktail Jason Williams, The Loft, Sydney Collin Perillo, Zeta, Sydney Phil Gandevia, Eau de Vie, [...]

  13. [...] Gandevia (ex Eau de Vie, now the Roosevelt) entertained the crowds with the Continental, a World Class interpretation of [...]

  14. [...] Chalmers, the Roosevelt’s Bar Manager, who was also instrumental in opening that bar as well as Phil Gandevia (Dr Phil), recent semi-final winner of the World Class Australia [...]

  15. [...] on 36 at the Shangri La, Bridgeview Hotel, Bucket List, Bungalow 8, Cargo Bar, Cohibar, Cruise Bar, Eau de Vie, Globe Bar at Observatory Hotel, Grandmas Bar, Hemmesphere, Hugos Bar Pizza, Hugos Manly, Island [...]

  16. [...] cocktails were on offer including, The Mesha, Eau-de-Vie’s number one selling cocktail from 2011, the popular Yuzu Mule, East Side Peach, The [...]

  17. [...] Phil Gandevia (Dr Phil) preparing the Royal Salute 21 yo cocktail [...]

  18. [...] bars. Best place to sit is, of course, at the bar. Read our review of Eau de Vie Bar – also here with Dr Phil. Address: 229 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst Open: Monday-Saturday: 6pm-1am; Sunday: [...]

  19. […] the passion for writing about bars and bartenders. We knew Dr Phil (Phil Gandevia) as far back as those early days and we were very excited at what the Doctor had in mind for our 5th […]

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