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avoBARdo

Let’s all take a moment to appreciate the Gold Coast’s (let’s be honest, unfairly good looking) crew of bar tenders who slave away so we regular folk can indulge in countless weekend beverages that, more often than not, lead to making questionable decisions.

While the desk-bound among us start to wind down come December (slash October) the hospo fam are winding up but before things get out of hand and they’re emotionally ruined by the demands of espresso martini slugging drunk people (apologies in advance), they’re going to have a little fun.

That’s right readers, your favourite bartenders will battle it out this Monday (December 11th) at Soho Place for best cocktail bragging rights and a shiny gold avocado trophy, judged by none other than your favourite local digital publisher (that’s us).

So who’s up for top honours? In no particular order (maybe) there’ll be Soho Place, The Scottish Prince, Cambus Wallace, Aloha Bar and Dining, The Loose Moose, The Collective and potential late entries from the likes of Justin Lane and Roosevelt Lounge.

In other words, we get to judge the cocktail shaking skills of the very best on the Coast with absolutely no qualifications to do so. Except that we really love cocktails. And having opinions.

The self-proclaimed brain children of the event are none other than Nightjar’s Toby Young, Soho Place’s Alex Sanabre, Tristan Brain from Bacardi and Adam Smith from Jack Daniels. The competition’s name is a cheeky nod to the fact that we millennials will apparently never be able to afford to buy a house due to an ongoing obsession with pricey avo on toast variations. Plus, avoBARdo on Coast. Clever kids.

Teams, if you’re reading this, overly sweet tipples ain’t really our thang and all bribes will be thoughtfully considered.

Head down from 9pm to congratulate the winners and get involved in a few Monday night shenanigans.

LOCATION: Soho Place, Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach (between Queensland and Victoria Aves)

Words by Kirra Smith.

Soho Place Bar

In a first for our foodie-centric city, Broadbeach has recently welcomed a London-style speakeasy known as a small bar in hospo-land. The drinks-only concept is popular around the world and now (hallelujah) the Gold Coast has joined the party.

Soho Place, opposite the Convention Centre, is marked only by a red door with no signage encouraging passers by to pop their heads in and discover what’s going on in the moody, candle-lit space.

Spray-painted scenes depicting London landmarks draw your eyes around the room until they land on the substantially stocked bar which, of course, is where the magic happens.

Owner Scott Imlach and his team, of Bine Bar & Dining and Hideaway Kitchen & Bar fame, have done their research and the result is a cocktail menu to rival any you’ve ever laid eyes on before. Combining some of the world’s most-loved concoctions along with plenty of their own unique creations, Soho Place is your new favourite watering hole.

Here’s why:

The Painkiller was first served on the island of Jost Van Dyke in the 1970’s and quickly became popular at Tiki bars around the world. It’s a sweet little drink made up of Pusser’s dark rum, cream of coconut, pineapple and orange juice, nutmeg and maraschino cherries. It’ll certainly soothe what ails ya.

The Bacardi Coconut Bomb is a delight to both behold and consume. It’s simply a whole coconut with a tiny little bottle of Bacardi inserted into the side and it will indeed, knock your socks off.

The Monk Movie is one of the most interestingly delicious things you’ve ever put in your mouth. Green Chartreuse, Gin Mare, popcorn syrup and lime juice combine for a punchy, popcorny flavour that has to be tasted to be believed.

The cocktail list is a long one so set out in search of the red door and choose your own adventure.

LOCATION: Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach (between Queensland and Victoria Aves)
HOURS: 5pm to midnight seven days

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

Nightjar

Just as it was starting to seem like there weren’t enough nights in the week to visit all the sweet bars Burleigh has to offer, another one pops up to demand your time and your cash.

You can thank Scott Imlach and his talented team for the latest dive bar-style back alley haunt, which is guaranteed to be your daily (too far?) go-to.

In their signature style, the gang behind Bine, Hideaway and Soho have decked the place out in traditional, Sailor Jerry, tattoo-style artworks and over 50 hanging bottles that provide a low-lit, dark and debaucherous vibe.

Opening on October 6th, Nightjar will take the bar scene back to basics with a focus on the ideals of freedom-seeking, wanderluster Sailor Jerry himself. There’s no dress code, no fancy fittings and no uptight rules (high fives all round).

It’s just a bar, down an alley, where good times are the name of the game.

There’ll be live music, cold beer, creative cocktails and crazy dance offs (may have made that up but a girl can dream right).

The name Nightjar pays homage to Scott and Michael’s Kiwi roots – in NZ their fave (also made up) phrase is “let’s have a jar at the pub” which in Aussie talk translates to “let’s get a beer”.

Can anyone confirm that beers in NZ are served in jars? Asking for a friend.

It’s the good old fashioned party bar Burleigh wants and deserves and there’s absolutely no doubt that all the best things will go down behind that roller door.

So pals, let your hair down, get your tattoos out and let the good times roll.

LOCATION: Justin Lane, Burleigh Heads (located next to Lockwood Bar)
HOURS: From 4pm to 12am Wednesday to Friday and 12pm to 12am Saturday and Sunday

Words and photos by Kirra Smith.

The Scottish Prince

Ahoy mateys, we found some treasure. A new venue has dropped anchor in Palm Beach and it’s all your whiskey-loving, cheese board fantasies brought to life.

The Scottish Prince is brought to you by the salty seadogs who gifted us Cambus Wallace so prepare to be transported back in time (again).

The sneaky side entrance opens to a dimly lit space reminiscent of a ships cabin (minus the drunk pirates and plus an impressive whiskey bar). Vintage memorabilia fills every corner, from battered books to long-ago-guzzled booze bottles and art-filled walls that will have you wandering around in wide-eyed awe.

As you’d expect from the nautical newbie, the bar is the star of the show, packed with over 150 varieties of whiskey taking up 90% of the shelf space.

The cocktail list is similarly impressive made up of an array of shipping-themed bevvies even the crustiest of captains will get involved in. For its name alone, the Betrayal and Mutiny in Manhattan is a must-try concocted with Woodford Rye, Espirit de Figues, Seppeltsfield Grand Tawny and Cinnamon Tincture stirred down and served with pear and blue cheese. Epic.

The dinner menu is share-style and every meal kicks off with the softest of sourdough from Burleigh Baker. From there, it’s choose your own adventure with everything from Sirloin Steak with truffle gherkins, golden shallots and red wine jus to Garlic Rosemary Roasted Brussel Sprouts gracing the menu.

Without a doubt though, the most enticing dish is Walk the Plank – a charcuterie board filled with everything that’s good about the world – truffle salami, MANY varieties of top quality cheese, cornichons, pickled fennel, olives, you name it. You’d probably send your own Grandmother off the plank for this one fam.

Oh and in a move not seen anywhere else, you can make your own magic by selecting individual meats and cheeses to build a custom board. STOP. IT.

Fun fact: The Scottish Prince is named after a ship that ran aground in the Southport seaway in 1887. Unsurprisingly, the majority of its cargo was cartons of whiskey. Today it’s a popular local dive spot but we’ll stick to the dry, un-sharky, alcohol-filled bar thank you very much.

Seeya there sailors.

LOCATION: 1176 Gold Coast Hwy (under 8th Ave Terrace), Palm Beach
HOURS: 5pm to 12am Tuesday to Thursday and 4pm to 12am Friday to Sunday

Words and photos by Kirra Smith.

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