We don’t mean to alarm you, but rumour has it there’s a suburb in Sydney that is moving in on our vibe. It’s a place where even the shoe stores feature live music, so naturally Sydney suburb Newtown has our attention. Here’s our guide to some best bars, shops, and restaurants in this inner-Sydney hub.
According to locals, Newtown is not so much a suburb as a lifestyle, where even the shoe stores feature live music. Here’s our snapshot of the best bars, shops, and restaurants in Newtown, whether you’re downing beers, burgers, and cocktails (or recovering from them), or simply looking for something new (and possibly vintage) to show off when you land back in Melbs.
The Urban Newtown
If you're going to explore Newtown properly, make this Sydney hotel your base camp. Step off the train and into the nexus of Newtown and Enmore, and get ready to settle in, because you’re probably not going to want to leave. Positioned right where peak coolness is happening, this boutique hotel captures all the character of Newtown and lets you sleep in its all green-vined, graffitied glory. Past the raw concrete, deliberately mismatched chairs, and table tops that double up as reading material, you can sink into a comfy bed after a very long and delicious night out at any of these venues. Oh, and bonus—The Urban Newtown has regular free wine and local beer tastings AND a free mini bar awaiting you in case you didn't indulge enough the night before. Win!
Young Henrys Brewery
Young Henrys started off as a quiet indie beer, and exploded into a Sydney classic. Not content with just making cult-worthy beer infused with mussels or hibiscus (who knows what’s next?!), the crew now make a brewer’s gin, too. Head to the tasting bar to sample the freshest beer possible that’s straight from the tank or, to learn more about the art of beer making, book yourself in for a tour and try to hide your jealousy.
If there is one thing Melbournites covet, it’s the famed Mary’s burger. Many have tried to replicate Marys’ bodacious burger success, but to no avail. Local loyalty to Mary’s runs so deep that you’d be forgiven for thinking it was a loved girlfriend. Some cite the juicy, unashamedly fatty patty as the reason for their lust for Mary’s, while others cite the buns. Whatever it is, Mary’s very rarely needs any introduction (or even a sign on the door apparently. But who needs one when you’ve one of Sydney’s best burgers?), so it’s an absolute must for anyone looking to experience the best of Sydney.
Earl’s Juke Joint
Earl’s has become one of Newtown’s most quintessential bars, with all the feel of a pub, the hipster factor of a confusing entrance, and casually kick-arse cocktails. Like many of Newtown’s bars that pay homage to the American South, there are plenty of foot-tapping tunes, drinks with nostalgic fizz, and the craftiest of beers. Sold yet?
If you’re looking to blend in with the locals who look like they’ve just thrown their outfit together but somehow still look way cooler than you, start out at Maple. Beyond the simple, classic styling of the clothes, Maple also incorporates work from local artists. Local potter Rita Mu, for example, will make your succulents look like they came from one of the swoon-worthy design magazines in store.
Of course, no post-weekend away get-up would be complete without sneakers, and Spring Court represent some of the best. Pulling off effortless cool has never been so comfortable. Weekenders regularly visit the Newtown flagship to see why all the celebs sport these babies, and once you’ve picked a pair, hop along to some of the live music in store.
Image credit: Alessandro Squadrito at Urban Newtown, Tanya Lee at Mary's, Anita Wilhelm at Earl's Juke Joint
Editor's Note: This article is proudly sponsored by The Urban Newtown and endorsed by The Urban List. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make The Urban List possible. Click here for more information on our editorial policy.