When I first moved to Melbourne straight out of university, one of my favourite bars was Jet Bar on Gertrude Street (anyone else remember it?). It was quiet, intimate and had a super-comfy red velvet chaise lounge near the front window. Hanging out there, listening to soft jazz, felt grown up.
I don’t know what ever happened to Jet Bar but I think it’s about time that Fitzroy got back a grown-up bar of its own. Hate to say it but I’m too old for the crowd at A Bar Called Barry and so I was very pleased to hear about the opening of The Everleigh.
The hard-to-find upstairs space of the defunct Dante’s has been transformed into a classically glamorous, but still relaxed and cosy, cocktail bar. It’s the newest addition to Manhattan’s Milk & Honey family but without the pesky membership requirements. Our Fitzroy version is much more egalitarian but shares the same good looks as Milk & Honey London which I’d visited a few years ago.
The two room, split-level space is all about plush leather booths, crystal chandeliers, polished mirrored tables and candelit confidences. Swing, big band and jazz play in the background, evoking a bygone era of elegant drinking. As for the cocktails? Of the two I tried (Rum Fizz and Fitzgerald), my pick was the Fitzgerald. Presumably named after one of my favourite Jazz Age authors, it was a classic mix of gin, lemon, sugar and bitters.
The Everleigh doesn’t require reservations but they can’t accommodate groups larger than six – so gather your best friends or your lover for a date with this classy bar.
The Everleigh, Level 1, 150-156 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy +61 3 9416 2229