Bars & Pubs

Fave 5 Hidden Bars In Sydney

By Anna May
3rd Feb 2015

When we love something we really, truly LOVE something! And that’s exactly how we feel about our new relationship! Some things just go together. Like cookies and cream, Brandon and Brenda… The Urban List and MINI! 

Our two families have collaborated to bring discerning readers and drivers a new fortnightly series – MINI Fave 5s. The must-try guide to Sydney, celebrating the launch of  the new MINI 5-door hatch

So, Urban Listers, clear the diary and get excited for our Fave 5s. There’s a whole year of eating, drinking and discovering to be done… 

Every Sydneysider knows it all too well: the hunt for the best cocktail bar in Sydney is a never-ending pilgrimage for something original. As we're sure you know, every great adventure ends with a cocktail, so we've taken some time to round up Sydney's best hidden bars. Sure, it might be a bit of work to find them, but you'll earn your drink at the end! 

The Baxter Inn

Make your way to The Baxter Inn with a regular, or be prepared for the best kind of treasure hunt: one that ends with whisky. Hidden in a tiny laneway off Clarence Street, this Sydney speakeasy features everything you’d want in a classy bar: apron clad, moustached bartenders who will help you select one of the 160+ whiskies on offer. 


Long before the speakeasy movement hit Sydney town, the Asian-inspired Grasshopper was hidden on Temperance Lane in the CBD, patiently waiting to be discovered by city-dwelling cocktail lovers. We dare you to say no to one of their creative cocktails while nibbling on a mouth-watering serve of crispy chicken wings. 

The Hold


Having a pirate-themed bar on Manly beach seems appropriate, and buried treasure in the form of delicious cocktails, plenty of beer and a banging bar menu is what you’ll find when you finally reach X marks the spot and drop anchor at The Hold. If you’re a tequila lover like us, you’ll love the Old Sea Dog: house tequila and agave water with pressed lime and mezcal. Hungry? We can’t go past the La Boqueria tasting board. 

Wild Rover

Surry Hills
If an unassuming green door labelled ‘shirt warehouse’ doesn’t sound like your idea of a great night in Sydney, think again. Wild Rover’s daggy exterior is a world apart from the fun that waits inside. Sip on a Greenwich Sour or popcorn treacle while chowing down on a few house-made sausage rolls. If the night escalates, make sure to head upstairs for some great live music.

Earl’s Juke Joint

If someone asked us to meet them at the butcher for a drink, we’d probably feign a family emergency and hightail it out of there, but behind the white, lacy curtained façade of Earl’s Juke Joint live some of Sydney’s best cocktails, so consider this a lesson in being open minded. Think deep-south American classics with that unmistakable Sydney twist at this Newtown bar; the Ramos Gin Fizz is compulsory. 

We're thrilled to partner with MINI to bring you our Fave 5 series—our fortnightly guide to the best of the best in Sydney. From food to fashion, Campari to Crossfit, each Fave 5 edition is researched and recommended by The Urban List, and driven by the new MINI 5-Door Hatch—putting the city at your fingertips and giving you the freedom to explore it!

Image credit: The Wild Rover, Grasshopper, The Baxter Inn

Get our top stories direct to your inbox.

Get our top stories direct to your inbox.

You May Also Like