Restaurants

9 Sydney Bars That Prove Italians Do It Better

By Lucy Cook - 20 May 2015

Pizza Autentico
Surry Hills, NSW 7 Images
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Pocket Bar
Darlinghurst, NSW 1 Image
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Casoni.
Darlinghurst, NSW 8 Images
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Aperitivo
Leichhardt, NSW 1 Image
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Button Bar
Surry Hills, NSW 7 Images
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Parlour Lane Roasters
Sydney, NSW 1 Image
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Italian Bar
Paddington, NSW 1 Image
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Bertoni Ristorante and Bar, CBD
Sydney, NSW 1 Image
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Balla
Pyrmont, NSW 1 Image
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Image credit: Casoni

Drinks. We’re fans of them. Strong, fizzy, bottled, or on tap, you can be sure we are assessing the beverage situation as soon as we enter a room. Italians generally also like their booze, in particular a snappy cocktail between work and home, unwinding for the day with a little snack and a bit of banter. They call this ‘Aperitivo Hour’ and we call this ‘another reason to check out more of Sydney’s best bars and do some more sipping’.

Pizza Autentico

Surry Hills

Aperol Spritz and arancini—the coat of arms for aperitivo hours everywhere, especially at Surry Hills Italian restaurant, Pizza Autentico. Available daily from 6 to 7pm, you can get your spritzy fix for $10, along with $5 selected wine, beer, and prosecco to help unwind after a long hard day of being a legend. Make a night of it and give in to temptation – sign yourselves up for the unlimited pizza. You know you want to.

Pocket Bar

CBD

The Pocket Bar folks know that the most important meal of the day isn’t breakfast, it’s apertivo hour, which is why they have special aperitif cocktails daily from 4 to 7pm. Of course, the Aperol spritz is a classic, but their ‘Once bitten, twice shy’ offering with lemon sorbet, Cointreau, rose water, lemon juice and soda water is sure to get your tastebuds tingling.

Casoni.

Darlinghurst

Casoni. have negronis and Aperol spritzs on tap. Drop the mic. You’ve got us hooked. They obviously know how to do the chilled out Italian happy hour thing and their relaxed Darlinghurst restaurant is one of our favourite places to take our aperitivo business. Add some olives and salumi to nibble our way through and we are in heaven.

Aperitivo

Leichhardt

As the name suggests, Aperitivo is the place to go for your…Aperitivo. Chic and inviting on Leichhardt’s famous Norton Street, the bar churns out delicious drinks with classic Italian bitters and flavours, perfect for accompanying the range of share plates they have on offer like fried zucchini flowers stuffed with ricotta—a classic.

Button Bar

CBD

The folks at Button Bar know how to chill out, unwind and have a great time – and they start early. The best aperitivo hours start straight after work, so head down to Button Bar, grab yourself something full of fresh ingredients and Italian bitters, as per aperitif tradition, and take in a bit of relaxation time before having to head back out into the real world.

Parlour Lane Roasters

CBD

The QT hotel in the CBD is all kinds of cool, wacky, classy and eclectic which is just the recipe for an aperitvo hour with a great vibe. The offerings are simple and classic – negronis, Pimms, cocktails and cheese plates. The goods are pumped out until 8pm, so it’s a great place for a hangout or a chilled start to a bigger night.

Italian Bar

Paddington

Relatively new on the scene, Italian Bar in Paddington is a paradise for those who love everything with a bit of ‘mamma mia’ pizazz. There are plenty of Italian bevvies to get you settled and satisfied and an authentic Italian menu to nibble your way through. Come for aperitivo hour but stay the whole night – it’s that kind of place.

Bertoni Ristorante & Bar 

CBD

The Bertoni family is ever expanding, giving Sydneysiders a taste of Southern Italian food with a New York style and a welcoming smile. Their CBD location is the perfect pit stop between work and home and is fully stocked with Italian tipples, from the negroni to americano, pinot grigio to chianti. That’s all the convincing we need, count us in!

Balla

Pyrmont

If you go down to The Star today, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. We’re talking about casual cocktails at Balla to see out your workday. Stefano Manfredi heads up the joint, so you would be crazy not to get something to nosh on like focaccia and porchetta or puffed pork crackling. The cocktail list is straight out of the aperitivo bible, full of limoncello, Campari, coffee and Aperol. It doesn’t get more Italian than that.

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