World War II is over. Streamers in the air, champagne flowing all around, American and French soldiers cheering on the streets. It’s August 25th, 1944. The Liberation of Paris. And perhaps one of the biggest parties of the century.
Lobo Plantation’s brand new bar Kittyhawk is a celebration of that party – step inside this dark, candle lit space and you’ll get the sense the party is just kicking off.
The walls are lined with 1940s war posters, vintage maps of Paris, black and white photos of the troops and a painting of the bar’s namesake, the WW11 aircraft. Display cabinets are stacked with WWII memorabilia sourced by designer Alex Zabotto Bentley – bugles, crystal carafes, coats of arms. It’s a veritable treasure trove that’s like stepping into another time zone.
You’ll go from the concrete jungle that is this end of town into an era that had fought hard and was finally ready to party. You’ll have to arrive early to beat the work crowd, with the lawyers and bankers below Hunter St already flocking to Kittyhawk’s plush leather booths and bespoke 12 metre American Oak bar like moths to a flame.
With good reason. The Lobo Plantation team know their stuff – the cocktail menu plays around with rum and rye whiskey concoctions, along with a mean old fashioned. With ALIA Bartender of the Year 2015 Paige Aubort’s expert advice you can’t really go wrong. The menu’s quirky design is modeled off a Kittyhawk flight operations manual – grids, deconstructed illustrations and extremely detailed drink descriptions. Try tipples like the Tonica Express, which comes with its own little hessian baggie stocked with chocolate coffee beans and Berry 3 Ways, a white rum, smoked strawberry and ginger beer concoction that comes with a lego man!
Chef Jason Wright is behind a short but serious food menu that takes queues from the French – a trio of coq au vin pies have melt in your mouth flaky pastry, cheesy ratatouille sticks are moreish so order two serves, and pull out the steak tartare when you want to show off your foodie finesse to your work colleagues and you won’t be disappointed.
16 Phillip Lane