It was a bit of a shock to drive past Mr Scruff's and find another bar in its place. Sort of like seeing another family living in your childhood home. Of course, it helps when the new bar is called ‘Foxxy Dolphin’. Anything named Foxxy Dophin is aces in our book.
So yep, the old Mr Scruff's may be gone, but its spirit lives on. Foxxy Dolphin is everything the old place stood for: cheap grog, good tunes, a bit of Smith St scruffliness and the no-frills atmosphere you need for a proper neighbourhood watering hole.
That’s not to say there hasn’t been some changes. The back room is now decked out in—jeez what do we call this—‘tropical grandma’ might be closest. It’s like your Nanna’s tea room. Vintage chairs, a jungle mural on the wall, hanging plants and tiger-print bench seating. Definitely not what we were expecting, but it’s a cute spot with the afternoon light streaming through the back windows.
The outdoor beer garden is still looking mint, although it’s been given a slick of white paint. There’s still a back bar down here, slinging Bloody Mary’s topped with mac n’ cheese balls wrapped in bacon (this place is called Foxxy Dolphin—did you expect subtle?)
The food menu is wall-to-wall burgers, supercharged schnitzels and pimped fries. We recommend starting with either Le Big Mac (all-beef patties topped with special sauce lettuce, pickles, cheese + onions) or the Squish Burger (peppered Wagyu, double cheese, pickles, mustard, ketchup etc etc).
The schnitzels come out on wooden boards, resting on a mound of fries and loaded with everything from chorizo and maple aioli to chilli con carne and sweet potato mash. The sort of food that makes it hard to get out of the chair afterwards.
The tap beers are tight—just Furphy, James Squire cider and Foxxy Dolphin’s own homebrew lager. But there’s a variety of craft tinnies (including a cheeky XXXX Gold), plus your basic reds and whites (you don’t come to a place called Foxxy Dolphin to smell the cork).
Keep an eye on the lads’ weekly specials. At the moment they’re running $12 Negronis on ‘Mad Dog Mondays’, plus $1 wings and $1 mac n’ cheese balls on Tuesdays. Fridays are $5 loaded fries and $12 jugs. It’s that sort of place.
RIP Mr Scruff's. We had some good times together. But if anything can fill your sultry shoes, it’s Foxxy Dolphin. So long, and thanks for all the fish.
Image credit: Jenna Fahey-White