Summer may be over, but this doesn’t mean you need to hibernate indoors like a couch potato all winter. Whether you’re looking for a roaring fireplace, a cosy heated terrace or a cheeky cocktail to warm your cockles, keeping warm in Melbourne has never been easier.
Here are six of my favourite winter bars in Melbourne.
Beat the winter chills at the impossibly cosy 1806 bar on Exhibition Street. Spend a chilly evening working your way through the epic cocktail menu, cleverly divided into era. Liquid warmers like Lord Ruthven’s Gossip Girl, made with Hennessy, dark ale, brown sugar, lemon and spices, is guaranteed to soothe the most restless of souls. Cocktail connoisseurs, rest assured, you have come to the right place.
Best winter warmer: Lord Ruthven’s Gossip Girl
An experience at Madame Brussels is like tumbling down the rabbit hole and discovering a Mad Hatter’s afternoon tea party. With its vintage inspired décor, astro turf and garden chaises, you will be hard pressed to find a prettier bar anywhere else. The all seasons terrace has your winter needs covered. If you ask nicely, you may be treated to a cosy hot water bottle and fluffy blanket to snuggle into while enjoying a cup of warm spiced rum. If this isn’t enough to warm you from the inside out, don’t miss their smooth chocolate fondue.
Best winter warmer: Warm Spiced Rum
Follow the mysterious lamp light in Malthouse Lane to an unmarked wooden door and you will find Eau De Vie – a prohibition style bar in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. One of Melbourne’s most classy establishments, this jazz inspired bar makes a perfect spot for an intimate date. Expect to be taken on an adventure by the expert bartenders who shake, stir and swizzle a mouth-watering array of cocktails. If you’re lucky enough to find it, you may not want to leave.
Best winter warmer: The King’s Fire
Venture to Tattersalls Lane, off Chinatown, on a winter’s eve and you will discover Section 8 Container Bar. The junkyard styled bar is full of old shipping palettes and graffiti. Although insanely popular in summer months, Section 8’s beer garden also has your winter needs covered. Perch by the outdoor heaters and red lanterns and sip some mulled wine with the hipsters of Melbourne.
Best winter warmer: Mulled Wine
Whisky fans – look no further than Whisky and Alement to shake the winter blues. This tiny bar on Russell Street has one of the most impressive whisky lists around, with nearly 500 on offer. The bartenders will be more than happy to educate you about all things whisky and the pleasures of the brown liquor.
Best Winter Warmer: Hot Buttered Wine
Styled after a Krakow bar, this Melbourne institution specializes in Polish vodka, authentic wormwood absinthe and hearty Polish cuisine. Sit by the bar and soak up the charming bohemian atmosphere of yesteryear. Try one of their Turkish apple teas, served with pomegranate molasses and Medos honey vodka. And don’t forget to leave room for some hearty Polish dumplings s or a big bowl of borsch. If this doesn’t get your blood pumping, nothing will.
Best winter warmer: Hot vodka tea.
What are you’re favourite bars in Melbourne? Would love to hear your comments below.