Grain Bar, the latest addition to the Sydney bar scene has officially opened at the Four Seasons Hotel Sydney this month. The architect-designed bar offers a stunning interior with an indoor/outdoor feel overlooking George and Alfred Streets.
The bar takes its name from the origins of alcohol and the grains in the hand-made timbers that make up its stylish fitout. Artistic and design elements give the bespoke bar a modern, elegant yet cosy feel.
Designed by architect Michael McCann, the central island bar is covered in curved slabs of sustainable Queensland Blackbutt timber over a frosted glass inner core. There’s a floating up-lit bottle wall, large grained wooden artisan entry doors, a central fireplace and retractable glass windows which overlook a native garden.
Bar Manager, David Ramos Hernandez of the highly successful Low 302 bar, The Argyle, Bayswater Brasserie and Longrain lends his expertise to the fine craft of drinking with a drinks list offering a range of biodynamic and organic wines and craft local tap beers including the Grain Lager from the Rocks Brewery in NSW. The cocktail list has an international flavour with a contemporary twist, with prices ranging from $17 to $20.
The Pink Lady is a crowd pleaser, made with Applejack, sloe gin, lemon juice, pomegranate syrup, shaken with gin. If you like your cocktails a little on the sweet and fruity side, try The Godfrey, made withBrandy, blackberries, vanilla sugar, Grand Marnier, crème de mure and lemon juice.
L-R: The Paloma, Left Hand Cocktail
The Paloma is a refreshing and well-balanced cocktail made with Tequila, lime juice and sugar charged with grapefruit soda. Have one, and it can easily lead to another, particularly as the weather warms up. Or if you like to taste the base spirit in your drink, the Left Hand Cocktail, which isa take on the Negroni, hits the right spot with a mix of Bourbon and sweet vermouth stirred with Campari and chocolate bitters. Delicious.
The Eastern Promise sounds intriguing, a drink made with fresh pineapple and coriander, vodka shaken with absinthe, something to leave for next time.
Clockwise from top left: Potato crackling, Clair de lune oysters, Steamed brioche smoked trout roe, Red claw yabbies
If you’re feeling peckish, Grain Bar offers no ordinary bar food with Chef Hamish Ingham of Surry Hill’s Bar H at the helm. Think tartare of wild king fish pickled beet root and seaweed cracker ($19), lardo on toast with black and white garlic and spring pollen ($14), and fried old man salt bush with garlic aioli ($12). And then there’s the red claw yabbies ($25) that are simply irresistible and come served on the shell with a toothpick for easy handling.
Clockwise from top left: Tartare of wild king fish pickled beet root and seaweed cracker, Lardo on toast w black and white garlic, Muntrie pavlova, Fried old man salt bush with garlic aioli
There are seasonal oysters such as Claire de Lune ($4 each) by Steve Feletti, the Grain Burger and fries ($21) and the Rangers Valley hanger steak 7+ ($29.50) served with salt and vinegar parsnips. Finish with the Muntrie pavlova or a box of tobacco chocolate almonds ($8).
Grain Bar breathes new life and energy into what was once an old-fashioned hotel bar where the mood was sedate and a piano occupied a lonely corner. The ambience is lively with a mix of couples and small groups of friends, the music is upbeat but non-intrusive on conversations and the attentive bartenders are keen to guide you through your choice of drink.
Grain Bar can be accessed up the steps from George Street or from the hotel’s lobby. With its inviting local bar feel, hand-crafted food and drinks, it set to become a popular hit spot for Sydney-siders, travellers and hotel guests.
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Update: The Four Seasons Sydney on George St has now opened a new restaurant The Woods.
Gourmantic attended the media launch of Grain Bar on Thursday 20 September 2012.
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