Bars & Pubs

Brisbane’s Best Underground Bars

By Catherine Blake
1st Aug 2014

Sometimes life on the surface gets a bit hectic and we long to find ourselves far from the maddening crowd. Someplace special where you can get an amazing drink, maybe a snack, and slowly dissolve into surreality. Thankfully there's no need to go chasing rainbows as Brisbane's subterranean bars are the perfect respite. 

Leave the mainstream and take your city-slicking self off road for some smooth drinks and easy speaking in one of Brisbane's best underground bars (also ideal places to wait out a zombie apocalypse). 

Let's go spelunking…

John Mills Himself | CBD

John Mills must have been a honey badger. Who else could fashion such a snug nook in the heart of the CBD to rest his bones? This broom-closet speakeasy serves local craft beer and pretzels to anyone who didn't blink passing by. This is a new Brisbane bar you must get yourself to.

The Twig & Berry | Newstead

Real treasures never sit atop the surface, but you won't have to dig too deep to find our latest gem. Tucked beneath the asphalt in bustling Newstead, the Twig & Berry offers spectacular cocktails and a cosy space away from the main drag. Their mulled wine is positively crackin' and makes the Twig & Berry's reputation as one of Brisbane's best underground bars well earned. 

Greaser Bar | Fortitude Valley

Hungry? Sobering? Lost? All good things as far as Greaser is concerned. They've got a late-night menu of delicious American fare, live music, dingy decor and some killer cocktails to keep you well entertained. Like many of the entries on this list, this new Brisbane bar can be hard to find, so keep an ear out and follow the sounds of debauched youth further underground.

Padre Bar | Woolloongabba

Forgive me, father, for I have sinned … Get your confessions ready because these three lads have been mixing up liquid strife. Submerged and small, Padre resembles a cellar and accordingly offers a bountiful selection of wines and cocktails. Please, oh please, let our cups runneth over. 

The TBC Club | Fortitude Valley

A storm has been brewing and it's all going down at the TBC Club. It will be dark, it will be loud, and there will be mayhem. Duck below into the catacombs beneath the Flying Cock, and experience firsthand exactly why they call this new Brisbane bar a Mass Of Seething Humanity. 

Brew | CBD

Another dive, another driveway… But this is no ordinary bunker bar. By day, breakfast is served and coffee brewed, but by night, Brew drops the alter ego and becomes an underground watering hole and tapas bar. Despite its locale you'll find no corporate grey or clinical white, so come five o'clock escape your day job and let the rascal loose. 

Chalet Bar, The Alliance Hotel | Spring Hill

It may not be snowing (or even close) but the Chalet Bar will warm your spirits all the same with their cosy decor of leather armchairs, animal pelts, and a roaring fire. Save yourself the drama of an actual ski holiday but still soak up the apres ambience with some ballin' burgers and absinthe for that sparkly, green feeling.


Walrus Club | Toowong

Rum, bow ties, and bootleggers — it's the triple threat that never disappoints, but where to find it? The essence of a basement bar is seclusion, but the gents of the Walrus Club will raise you some secrecy. Enter at the Regatta (hear me out), make your way downstairs (stay with me) and approach the reticent door with the walrus on it. Behind it lies the forgotten world of 1920s prohibition so bring your best moustache. 

THE FEVER CLUB | Fortitude Valley

Heads up, kids! It's not open quite yet, but next week the space formely occupied by the Air Raid Shelter under Alfred & Constance will be transformed into the very cool Fever Club, a new Brisbane bar and Euro-style discotheque paying homage to the underground dance parties of Berlin. Set to open its doors next Friday the 8th, this is one new Brisbane bar you should try to stumble across.

Image credits: Daniel Maddock

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