Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Mystery bar number 37

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As Simon and Stephen worked out, the previous mystery bar was Sweet Mother's Kitchen, in the strange little space on Courtenay Place where Cinta Malaysia was until very recently. As their coffee supplier says, they are more of a café than a bar, though they intend to open later and later as they gradually work their way into the swing of things, and to my mind any place that serves Margaritas by the carafe definitely counts as a bar. I may, however, regret trying their chili beer.

Mystery bar #37 - the barOn the other hand, this week's mystery bar is definitely a bar. It's still trying to cover a lot of markets, and while it's a little bit metro, it's more than a little retro. There's a lot of the stone wall detailing that's becoming rather over-familiar, a garish pool table, and plenty of self-conscious faux-rustic furniture. In contrast, there are elements that are relatively crisp and contemporary (as long as by "contemporary" you mean "circa 2002"), such as white leather cubes and colourful backlit bar shelves. It's as if it's trying to attract a blokey crowd but also wants to aim for chic and sophistication: it doesn't quite come off, but it's actually not a bad attempt.

Mystery bar #37 - pool tableAccordingly, there's a wide range of drinks on offer. Plenty of beer, of course; a predictable wine list; and a fairly comprehensive cocktail offering. This manages to generally avoid concoctions with "hilarious" "suggestive" names, and covers most of the classics while adding a few of their own. I stuck to my mission and opted for a Martini: the inexperienced bartender sensibly summoned expert help, and the results were very creditable indeed. It was a quiet night when we visited, no doubt due to the atrocious weather, and when this place is in full swing I wouldn't recommend ordering anything too involved. Nevertheless, if you're aiming to find an acceptable bar for a diverse bunch of people, this would be worth a try.


At 10:32 am, July 28, 2006, Blogger Tom said...

Nope, it's still very much alive.

I'm not sure what's closed down in Cuba St recently, other than Neat (and that's supposedly been bought by one of the McGraths).

At 12:10 pm, July 31, 2006, Blogger Tom said...

No, this has been around for a few years, though it's just a little bit hidden from the street, so some people may never have seen it.

At 2:29 pm, August 04, 2006, Blogger Tom said...

Nope. The hint was: it's one of the onces I've been to. That doesn't narrow it down much, I know.

At 10:43 pm, August 05, 2006, Blogger Br3nda of coffee.geek.nz said...

could that be subnine?

gosh, you need a "real" camera..
(hint hint...)

At 5:43 pm, August 12, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

is it the upstairs bar at lone star on tory street?

At 11:23 pm, August 14, 2006, Blogger Br3nda of coffee.geek.nz said...

the first photo could be the upstairs portion of that place in tory street...
but i don't recognise the pool tables.


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