A freelance writer with an interest in just about everything.
Published September 12th 2011
Comedian Dave Barry once said that "the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer". If you share Barry's view that the invention of the wheel, the telephone and even penicillin all pale in comparison to the creation of the amber nectar, you should head to the Bazaar Beer Cafe.
Situated in St Leonards, Bazaar is a bit of a hidden gem. It's hidden away from the main restaurant/cafe areas around St Leonards and Crows Nest, which does make it easier to get a table. Combining boutique beers with warm and hearty European cuisine, the Bazaar Beer Cafe is the perfect spot for a nice, long lunch or some after-work drinks on a Friday arvo.
As you'd expect, there's a decent selection of European beers on offer. From Budějovický budvar premium lager through to wheat beers, dark lagers and pilsners, there's plenty to choose from to broaden your beer horizons. If you're not much of a beer fan, try a fruity beer, cider, wine or one of the exotic spirits you're not likely to see in many other places.
The cuisine here is of the big and hearty variety, making it ideal on a cold winter's day. Dishes like veal goulash ($22.90), lamb shanks ($24) and a range of schnitzels (starting from $19.90) will fill you up. But if you ask me, you can't go past the crunchy crackling on the slow roasted pork belly ($22.90). Be warned, however, that the servings here are pretty big. If you're not feeling overly peckish, try something from the list of starters instead.
The prices are much more reasonable than at some other boutique beer establishments.
The menu helpfully matches a beer to each meal, so choosing a drink doesn't have to come down to simply closing your eyes and pointing at the menu. And to top it all off, the food and drink prices here are entirely reasonable - something that can't be said about a lot of boutique beer estalishments.