There’s something about drinking on a rooftop bar that makes you want to sing ‘King (or Queen) of the castle’ at the ant-sized commoners you can see from your tower. So you can get your smug cocktail on, here’s six of the best rooftop bars in Sydney’s CBD. Don’t even think about telling me it’s too cold – flip winter the bird and get on up there.
Technically, The Rook’s rooftop is under cover, but you’ll find it on level 7, which maketh it a rooftop bar in my mind. Plus, it’s pretty damn awesome. There are cocktails-aplenty, and enough delicious burgers and juicy lobster to keep you smiling all week long. The Peg Leg cocktail with Captain Morgan spiced run, guava, lime, coconut, and falernum is the ideal rooftop tipple, and don’t forget to get stuck into a burger. The Uncle Sam with wagyu, cheese, tomato jam, mustard aioli, and a pickle hits the spot every time, and comes with truffle fries, of course.
Tank Stream Way
Look for the graffitied face off Bridge Street to find this hotly anticipated rooftop bar in the CBD, and you'll quickly find yourself a new watering hole. The vibe is unpretentious (i.e. not full of suits checking themselves out in their smartphone reflection), the food is casual and delicious, and the craft beers and wines are flowing. Street artist Lister has left his mark all the way up the stairs throughout both levels of the bar, giving you and your mates (or workmates) plenty to talk about. Solidifying Taylor’s as a much-needed oasis from the frenzied CBD is the green wall—the perfect backdrop for the botanical cocktails.
Head into this new Sydney bar from Thursday the 16th July.
Cumberland Street, The Rocks
There wouldn’t be a list of rooftop bars in Sydney without a mention of the good old Glenmore. With panoramic views of the Opera House and Sydney Harbour, this is one incredible spot to get your cocktail on. Go ahead and order the soul-warming pot pie, this historic hotel is the perfect spot for a pub classic.
Bristol Arms Hotel
Remember dancing until your feet were shredded at The Retro? Don’t try to deny it’s not a damn good night out. If your dancing days are behind you, or you need a few bevvies to get you going, the Bristol Arms rooftop is the place to be. The space is open, airy, and perfect for casual drinks or a function.
Ivy Pool Club
Not to worry, the days of models splashing around the pool are over, and the vibe is more relaxed these days. You’ll feel a world away from grimy George Street when you pop a bottle of bubbles and plonk yourself on a lounge chair for an afternoon in the sun at Ivy. If you’re keen on a lunchtime hang, you can grab one of chef Vincenzo’s delicious woodfired pizzas and a glass of wine or beer for $24 on Thursdays or Fridays.
The home of Sydney’s unofficial cocktail wizards, Zeta Bar will dish up some deliciously creative concoctions (don’t knock a Matcha cocktail until you try it), that you can enjoy while people-watching from the rooftop bar. When hunger pangs hit, head downstairs to Glass Brasserie for some tasty snacks.
Image credit: Nicola Sevitt at The Rook