Bar 1880 may just be the best cocktail bar in Sydney

Fastest cocktail maker around

I’m calling it. Bar 1880 blew us away for a number of reasons and I think it may be the best cocktail bar in Sydney and yes I’ve been to Maybe Sammy.

So here’s why this place is a must visit and could be the best cocktail bar in Sydney.

  1. The cocktails are AMAH-ZING.

The idea behind Bar 1880 is to bring back old cocktails from generations past and play homage to the old building it’s in – the printing room for the Bulletin Newspaper. The vibe is moody with low lighting, a classically dressed team, uneven floors and a space full of history.

It’s not a fusty old cocktail menu, though, it’s full of different flavours and more sophisticated balance that what you’re used to, bringing back classics from 1920’s France and 1940s Egypt. The list is seriously cool.

For instance the Bulletin Bellini ($23) A combination of mirabelle plum, cardamon, prosecco, rose foam, and pistachio dust. Sweet, but slightly spicey and the foam  – well it tasted more like a cream. Balanced and not outrageously sweet.

Or the Lock Me Up ($26), Francois Voyer VS Cognac, washed banana, chestnut, fino bitters. Like an Old Fashioned, but about 10,000 better. Dusty, bitter, balanced and perfect.

Or if that’s not enough evidence, the Bubble Cadillac ($32) Herradura Reposado Tequila, Grand Marnier, lemon, mandarin & champagne air. The “air” is a foam sitting atop the drink, marrying perfectly with the tequila. Who knew this was a thing? Well, Alex the creative mixologist knows (he also happens to be the 2011 French bartender of the year).

All up – incredibly interesting, complex, balanced and wonderfully different.

2. High quality ingredients

The team have dedicated themselves to bringing together some of the finest ingredients  and highest quality spirits together to create a superior cocktail experience. Considering you can pay these prices for standard spirits – it’s worth the attention to detail.

All additional elements are made in-house – from the foams to the “air” to the dusts.

3. The fastest cocktail slinger in the west

With such complexity usually comes a lot of time waiting for the next round of drinks. Not with Alex at the helm. Two mins is his aim to get the drinks out. No fancy shaking and spinning bottles, although I’m sure he can. The approach is really focused on the customer and ensuring you get your drinks in the fastest possible way.

4. There’s no kitchen, but the snacks are great.

There’s three courses of snacks. From the nuts, to the sardines to the cheesecake.

The sardines in particular make you feel like you’re in an old bar in the middle of Spain, sardines, bread and a cocktail >magnificent.

Bar 1880
10 Bulletin Place, CBD
Tue to Thu 4pm–midnight
Fri & Sat 4pm–2am

About the author

Michelle hails from the UK – but grew up with big flavours and spices thanks to her Singaporean Mum. International cuisine has always been part of Michelle’s life as she explored the world in the pursuit of delicious food and wine – along with a castle or two. Michelle now lives in Sydney after a lengthy stint in Brisbane (a city dear to her heart, which she visits frequently). She is letting her nose and palette be her guide as she discovers and shares exciting and delicious dining experiences. Michelle also loves, in equal measure, fashion, sunshine and puppies.


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