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Our Pick For Best Bars In Australia and New Zealand 2020

7 min read

Our Pick For Best Bars In Australia and New Zealand 2020

Creativity and innovation at its finest

The craft cocktail scene in Australia is thriving. If you like intricate concoctions; barrel-aged cocktails; liquors and syrups, all made from scratch; or just colourful umbrellas, you’re in luck. This is the golden era of bartending and mixology.  

Barkeepers all around the Australian Continent are as quality-minded, inventive, and obsessed as the best in London or New York. Something is going on here, it’s history in the making, and you can be part of it. 

These are the best cocktail bars in every state in Australia (and New Zealand too!) Pick your favourite. Better yet, visit them all and enjoy the most incredible drinks you’ve ever experienced. 

Did you know our unique range of glassware all have a 1 shot pour mark, perfect for the home mixologist and easy to make cocktails. The 1 shot pour mark is exactly 1 standard drink of Vodka or Whiskey at 40% alcohol. 
The best cocktail bars in Victoria 


Arbory Bar & Eatery, Melbourne 

Start the night early with refreshing cocktails at Arbory, an outdoor bar on the banks of the Yarra River; you can’t beat the scenery. The wine list is indulging, the cocktails classy. Try a Summer Negroni made with blood orange gin or a Passion Fruit Margarita — perfect for sunny days.  

Instagram @arboryeatery 

Facebook @arboryeatery 


Eau de Vie, Melbourne 

The prohibition era in America inspired this place both in decor and offerings; it’s a time machine. The cocktail menu is covered with fun, eclectic art. Cocktails are inspired by Shakespeare, the Burlesque scene, Carnivals in Rio, and much more. You’ll have as much of a good time choosing your drink as you’ll do drinking it.   

Instagram @edvmelbourne 

Facebook @eaudeviemelbourne 


Glamp Cocktail Bar, Melbourne 

Feel like glamping? This bar hides inside a glamorous safari tent on top of the Polēpolē Restaurant. African inspired snacks shine best with a craft cocktail on hand. The Serengeti Surprise cocktail is made with tequila and ginger beer; the lively King Kahawa cocktail merges the flavours of spiced rum and Sherry. The wine list is impressive too. 

Instagram @glampbar 

Facebook @glampbar 


The best bars in New South Wales 


PS40, Sydney 

One of the best bars in the world, PS40 is a synonym with innovation. Their menu changes often and star bartenders from all over the globe have guest appearances throughout the year. If you don’t fill like drinking, PS40 offers a wide range of artisan sodas too.  

Instagram @ps40bar 

Facebook @ps40bar 


Bulletin Place, Sydney 

Don’t be deceived by the grungy decor; this place is a mecca for craft cocktails in Sydney. The cocktail menu changes daily, and drinks are based strictly on Australian seasonal produce. These might be the most coveted 45 bar stools in the country. 

Instagram @bulletinplacesydney 

Facebook @bulletinplace 


Jacoby’s, Sydney  

Jacoby's is the best Tiki Bar in Sydney. The tropical oasis is just fun to hang around; the ambiance is festive and loud. Cocktails, though, are dead serious and nothing like the overly sweet Tiki drinks of the past. The Señor Cherry tequila cocktail is smokey and sour, the Jungle Bird, with pineapple rum, and Campari is a bittersweet delight!  

Instagram @jacobystikibar 

Facebook @JacobysTikiBar 


Looking for one of a kind stand out glassware? Do you have family gatherings and want to make sure everyone drives home safe? Know someone who is focusing on their health looking to eat and drink mindfully? From our luxe crystal range, we have a limited edition gift set of our unique universal wine glasses available in Australia and New Zealand. A standard drink in every glass, takes the thinking out of drinking.
The Standard Drink Company Signature Glasses 
The best bars in Queensland 


The Gresham, Brisbane 

 The Gresham is a Heritage Bar with a history. The old building suits the impeccable service perfectly. A place with “An old-world charm,” they say, and you can see it in their cocktails. Try the Me Oh My cocktail made with Bacardi rum, crème de violette, honey, lime and coconut. The Gresham was named the Bar of the Year in 2018. 

Instagram @thegresham 

Facebook @TheGreshamBar 


Red Hook, Brisbane 

This bar gets inspiration from classic New York bars. Burgers are some of the best in the city, but cocktails are worth a visit too. The I’m George Constanza cocktail, with bourbon and blackberry liquor, is all the proof you need.  

Instagram @redhookbrisbane 

Facebook @redhookbrisbane 


Blackbird, Brisbane 

This award-winning restaurant is the best in Brisbane; food is spectacular, and the drinks are too. Awarded the “Drinks List of the Year” in 2016, the bar here brims with talent. Try the Mrs. Brown's Pecan Pie cocktail: Woodford Reserve, pecan, maple syrup, citrus and egg white foam.   

Instagram @blackbirdbrisbane 

Facebook @blackbirdbrisbane 


The best bars in South Australia 


La Buvette Drinkery, Adelaide 

This is a French Apéritif bar that feels like Paris. Wines abound, especially the natural and organic kind. Cocktails are clean and straightforward, from a White Lady to a Vieux Carré. La Buvette makes the classic cocktails come back to life. 

Instagram @labuvettedrinkery 

Facebook @labuvettedrinkery 


Hains & Co, Adelaide  

Inspired in nautical fare, Hains bar focuses on rum, gin and whiskey craft cocktails. The staff here goes to great lengths to find the best spirits around the world and make them sing in simple but delicious ways: A gin and tonic with a slice of red capsicum, for example. There’s a proper cigar menu too. 

Instagram @hainsandcoadelaide 

Facebook @hainsco 


Pink Moon Saloon, Adelaide  

Eclectic, yet strangely familiar, this bar takes inspiration in the phases of the moon. There’s a magnificent Australian wine selection and lots of craft beer too. The cocktails are on another level: The Rhubarb Iced tea with vodka, and the Tequila and Smoked Lemonade are standouts. 

Instagram @pinkmoonsaloon 

Facebook @pinkmoonsaloon 


The best bars in Western Australia 


Lot Twenty, Perth 

A fine selection of bar bites, from dutch fries to baked ricotta gnocchi, are perfect pairings for the cocktails here. Their “Fancy Drinks” selection includes a Granny’s Apple Pie cocktail and a Tequila and Mezcal drink called Barney the Dinosaur.  

Instagram #lottwenty 

Facebook @lottwenty 


Strange Company, Perth 

It’s not strange that this place is regularly packed. Food here is meant to be shared and the wine list is extensive and creative: choose a bottle from either the Fruit + Structure category or the Bright + Crunchy one. They also list cocktails for their flavor profile. Try the Mezcal-based Million Dollar Riot from their Bittersweet collection of drinks. 

Instagram @strange_company_fremantle 

Facebook @strangecompanyfremantle 


Mechanics Institute, Perth 

Craft beer, artisan wine and a cocktail menu that changes daily, that’s how committed the folks in the Mechanics Institute are with the drink culture. They make a mean Bloody Mary topped with a small hamburger, is this heaven? 

Instagram @mechanicsinstitutebar 

Facebook @MechanicsInstituteBar 


The best bars in Northern Territory 


Chow, Darwin 

A small Vietnamese restaurant with immersive ambiance and killer cocktails inspired in destinations like Singapore, Thailand, China, and of course, Australia. Try a Green Ant Sour, a Darwin Gimlet (with Aussie gin), or a Japanese Spritz with Midori and yuzu. 

Facebook @ChowDarwin 


Wisdom Bar & Cafe, Darwin 

Wisdom is a friendly, widely spaced bar in the heart of Darwin. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch the espresso martini happy hour, and if you’re not, there are plenty of solid drinks to choose from. Live music and DJs keep the crowd energized.  

Instagram @wisdombarandcafe 

Facebook @Wisdom Bar 


Nirvana Restaurant, Darwin 

This little Asian inspired eatery offers excellent food, thoughtful wines and superb cocktails. Local musicians set the stage for beautiful cocktails coming out the bar: The Nirvana Colada is made with 151 proof rum, and the Bloody Nirvana is seasoned with a secret ingredient. This bar is a good time guaranteed; by the way, if you’re a wine lover, you’ll find a nicely cured cellar. 

Instagram @nirvana_restaurant 

Facebook @nirvanarestaurant 


Did you know the single pour line you see in restaurants and bars can be 1.5 to 2 times the standard drink?

The Standard Drink Company normal glasses did you know?


The best bars in Tasmania 


Pablo’s Cocktails & Dreams, Hobart 

Live jazz music and a Blood Orange Margarita, what could be better than that? Pablo’s offers a great ambiance both in their main room and their outdoor smoking area. A beautiful hideaway that takes you to the golden age of glam-bartending and good music. 

Instagram @pabloscocktails 

Facebook Pablo's Cocktails and Dreams 


Society - Salamanca, Hobart 

Found in Salamanca, Hobart, this bar offers modern and vintage cocktails inspired in the seasons. The back bar is astounding:  bottles from floor to ceiling — they use a ladder to reach the top shelve. Try the saffron negroni, a blackberry bramble, or one of their many non-alcoholic cocktails — craft drinks at their finest. 

Instagram @societysalamanca 

Facebook @societysalamanca 


Gold Bar Hobart, Hobart 

Yes, the bar, the walls, and even the ceiling are golden and sparkly. Cocktails are worth their weight in gold too. This speakeasy specializes in Australian spirits like Tasmania’s Splendid Gin or the Straight Batt Single Malt Tasmanian whiskey.  




The best bars in New Zealand 


Caretaker, Auckland 


A slick, New York-style bar with dim lights, an impressive bottle collection, and perfectionist mixologists. Like in the movies, this bar in a basement serves classic cocktails with a twist. A Gin Jubile, for example, is made with Hidden World Gin, East Imperial yuzu tonic, lime, salt and Absinthe. 


Facebook @caretakernz 


John & Mays, Auckland 

This place is classy to the point that bartenders wear ties. Cocktails here take inspiration in the speakeasy era and the golden age of the mid-20th century. Try the beautiful Ponche de Leche cocktail or the First Class Sleeper, they both include a small snack, a tradition in this bar. 

Instagram @johnandmays 

Facebook @johnandmays 


Crumpet, Wellington 

Crumpet is a nice, friendly bar with an energetic atmosphere. Tailored cocktails are a highlight, but there’s a new cocktail menu every month, so don’t be a stranger. Expect something like their Sbagliato Bianco: House infused pink peppercorn Suze with tangelo cordial, sweet vermouth and sparkling wine. Bartenders down in Wellington know their stuff. 

Instagram @crumpetbar 

Facebook @crumpetbar 


The Standard Drink Company Perfect Pour Glasses


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