There’s something about a rooftop that’s more appealing than a ground floor terrace. Perhaps it’s the views or the thin air. Whatever it is, rooftop bars are a hit regardless of the season. During summer, you can find rooftop bars filled with patrons basking in the sun, cooling off with an Aperol Spritz, and enjoying good conversation. Spring is no different, and even in winter, you will find Sydneysiders flocking to the roof, rugged up, awaiting a glass of white or mulled wine.
Step up your happy hour and after-work drinks with Sydney’s best rooftop bars. Views are included.
CBD From the Ratpack bartenders that brought us Maybe Sammy, comes Dean and Nancy on 22, a swanky new enclosed rooftop bar sitting atop the A by Adina hotel. This bar pays homage to the classic hotel bars of golden eras past. Expect a black and gold colour palette, and windows, each two-storeys high, overlooking the city. The cocktails are bold, and playful, with a touch of theatrics you will find at Maybe Sammy’s. The bubble guns are back, and there is a whole menu filled with new cocktails divided into categories from travel to music, and games.
Millers Point The crown of Hotel Palisade is Henry Deane, a cocktail bar spread over two levels, offering some of the best views of Sydney, including a vantage point of the Harbour Bridge. They serve lunch and dinner and most importantly drinks to go with. Expect unique cocktails including a pompelmo spritz, sangria, and live cult cha kombucha, to which you can add your favourite spirit for $6. They also have an impressive wine list and stock local bottled beers. If you’re feeling peckish, head chef Cian Mullholand has a selection of shared plates from a whole smoked spatchcock to curd and cucumber pieces.
North Sydney Green Moustache is North Sydney’s first rooftop garden and bar, and it makes a splashy statement. Layered in greenery, tropical patterns, and simple wood furnishings, Green Moustache will make you feel like you’re in a jungle. They do a bottomless brunch on Saturdays and Sundays which is always a hit. They also offer lunch, dinner, and bar snacks, if you just came for a few drinks and a nibble. The cocktails here, focus on local and international styles from Australian Amaro in Adelaide to chilli infused tequila.
CBD This bar is certainly one-of-a-kind. Firstly, it’s set within a run-down office building, secondly, it’s hard to find and once you do find it, four flights of narrow stairs await. Although, once you get to the top there is always a drink waiting for you. The menu is ever-changing, but right now you can get signature canned cocktails and Philly cheesesteaks to soak up the day.
Barangaroo This cocktail bar overlooks the waterfront of Barangaroo and offers guests much more than just a bar. Here, you can find a dim-lit corner for a romantic night, or join in on the fun when a DJ plays on weekends and Friday nights. The wine list is well-travelled, but it’s the cocktails that are the showstoppers. The star of the show is smoke, so expect either a warmth, literal smoke, or smokey taste in some of the cocktails.
The Rocks The Glenmore has been an Aussie icon since 1921, so it’s easy to imagine the parties and the events that took place here. It has long been considered the best rooftop bar in Sydney, thanks to its incredible views of Sydney Harbour. Come winter, summer, or autumn, The Glenmore is packed with patrons dining and drinking through to the late hours of the night. They serve a few classic cocktails including an espresso martini, but also offer plenty of new aged cocktails. The wine list includes tipples from Australia and France.
CBD Babylon is Sydney’s largest outdoor rooftop terrace. Here, you’ll find a Levantine-inspired venue, with a restaurant, bar, and private dining space, but the bar is the place to be. The cocktail list takes its cues from flavours and spices of the eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East, plus there’s a whisky list (250+) and more than 400 bottles of international and Australian spirits. The 300 bottles strong wine list is a mix of old and new world wines.
CBD Sitting 83 floors above street level is a futuristic retro bar, clad in red and white circular lounges, striking mirrors, gold lights, and floor-to-ceiling windows with commanding city views. This bar looks like it was pulled from an episode of The Jetsons, and the cocktails are bolder than the interior. Expect concoctions from award-winning bartender Jenna Hemsworth—a Hubert alum—and classic bar bites from fried buttermilk chicken ribs to ocean trout tartare.
Bankstown Seeped in earthy, neutral tones and textures, the newly opened Lady Banks Rooftop is set to be a hotspot this summer and winter, with its internal dining and terrace areas fitting for year-round entertaining. The rooftop boasts breath-taking panoramic views of the Sydney skyline right through to the Blue Mountains. As for the food, expect a modern menu, focused on Middle-Eastern influences with an emphasis on shared plates. This includes Mezze boards, duck fat potatoes, chargrilled broccolini, and fresh seafood. The bar is where you will find a selection of gins—their specialty—as well as the usual suspects such as gin and rum. Some drinks will be in a shareable format, including a 3L crystal dispenser filled with vodka, watermelon, and basil.
There’s plenty to celebrate this year, from new menus to restaurants throwing parties, bottomless brunches, and more.
Here, we have the latest on Sydney’s food news, from chefs taking over restaurants to limited-edition menus and feasts for all your friends to enjoy.
To celebrate World Gin Day, and for one week only, gin and food lovers can try nagashi-sōmen—translating to ‘flowing noodles’— which sees noodles sent down a bamboo chute for diners to collect with chopsticks. The one-off experience will be hosted at Kid Kyoto, where guests can enjoy their flowing noodles alongside a menu paired with delicious KI NO BI Gin cocktails. Purchase tickets here.
Tuck into a Fireball Burger
Feeling the cold? Fireball Whisky and Bar Luca have teamed up for the ultimate firey menu. Offered for a limited time only, head down to Bar Luca for $6 Fireball shots all day, a Fireball shot and cocktail on arrival, and an all-you-can-eat bites of the full “Blame Fireball” menu on Saturday, July 1. Book a spot here.
For two nights only, on Tuesday the 20th and Tuesday 27th of June, Graeme Hunt, Head Chef of Sydney’s trending late-night bar and dining venue at Zaffi, will be stepping up to the kitchen at award-winning bar PS40. Pop-up guests can expect a mosaic of colourful Lebanese-inspired bar snacks paired with exclusive midweek sips made by the mastermind behind the experimental bar, Michael Chiem.
Fan of Cinderella? The Great Hall is transforming into The Royal Palace for an enchanting high tea from July 1-2. There will be dancing and fun, and then Cinderella will run out of the venue leaving behind her glass slipper—the search for the missing beauty will begin. Tickets for the Cinderella High Tea costs $80-85 and you can purchase them here.
Grill’d has dropped two new burgers, and they’re beyond anything we could have imagined. Taking inspiration from Mexico, Grilld’s two new burgers are a Zesty Mexi and Luxe Nacho Burger. The Zesty Mexi features a black bean pattie with corn chips, tasty cheese, slaw, jalapenos, and chipotle mayo mixed with green tomatillo lime salsa. For meat lovers, the Luxe Nacho Burger is the same as the Zesty Mexi, but with a premium Wagyu pattie.