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Cocktails at the W

Home > Brisbane > Bars | Cocktail Bars | Food and Wine | Hotels | Nightlife
by Roy Chambers (subscribe)
Lover of all things interesting and new
Published May 20th 2021
The Living Room Bar launches Flight of the Senses Cocktails
The W Hotel, by the river in Brisbane's CBD, has long been a place to visit for its trendy restaurants and cool bars. Things are getting even better with the Living Room Bar at the W adding in a selection of cocktails, titled 'Flight of the Senses', created in collaboration with London's popular Oriole Bar. Enjoy great cocktails inspired by flavours from around the world and some local Australian inspirations as well.

Brisbane's W Hotel is setting the pace for trendy luxury
Brisbane's W Hotel is setting the pace for trendy luxury


About the W

The W brand of hotels is run by the Marriot chain and aims to go beyond luxury to cool and trendy. At the W, you get the standard of rooms, restaurants, bars and service that you would expect from a 5-star hotel, but adds in a bit of extra style and flair that makes the experience special. After all, anyone can do luxury, but it takes something special to be comfortably on the edge of contemporary style.

If you are walking, the best entrance is from George Street
If you are walking, the best entrance is from George Street


About the Living Room Bar

Featuring lots of sofas, along with sitting and standing tables, it gives you a level of relaxed comfort you would want from your own living room, along with trendy designs, food and drinks that you wish were part of your life at home. Along with its great high tea, snacks and drinks selection, they have teamed up with Oriole Bar in London to create a selection of great new cocktails.

The Living Room Bar at the W
The Living Room Bar at the W


About the Oriole Bar

Standing out in London's very trendy bar scene is not easy, and Oriole achieves this with a focus on great new cocktails flavours as part of their cellar bar with an explorer feel. That theme isn't just for looks, it is the attitude that make them search around the world for inspirational flavours for their drinks.

About the Flight of the Senses cocktail selection

When I arrived at the Living Room Bar for the launch of their Flight of the Senses cocktail selection, I had been working hard since 7:30 am in the morning, with the only break from work involved being interrupted to deal with nonwork-related hassles, so not a break at all. I was definitely in the mood for a great cocktail and The Living Room Bar delivered.

At the living room bar
At the living room bar


The first one I tried was the Toowoomba. This sour berry flavoured offering came served with a little edible chocolate cup of nuts and dried coconut. This one would be great on a warm day when you will enjoy the flavour without a strong alcohol taste.

A Toowoomba cocktail with a sweet snack
A Toowoomba cocktail with a sweet snack


The next cocktail that I tried was inspired by the flavours and the music of Brazil, and named after the Brazilian pop star, Adriana Calcanhotto. This cocktail is meant to be shared and comes served in a wooden bowl. There is a strong fruity flavour that makes this one a joy to drink with friends.

Share the fruity flavours of a bowl of Adriana
Share the fruity flavours of a bowl of Adriana


The Indian inspired Diwali Cooler is good to order at the bar, as the process of making it is impressive. The rum and sour fruit flavours are not really my thing but combined with the smoky notes from the scorching process, I am sure it will have its fans.

The Diwali Cooler combines rum and sour fruits flavour
The Diwali Cooler combines rum and sour fruits flavour


Another great option to share is The Way of Arles, which comes served in a duck-shaped decanter. The name is from a historic pilgrimage route between France and Spain. The overall tangy flavour is enhanced by being served with scorched tomatoes and rosemary. Again, more fun if you order it at the bar and watch it being prepared.

Get some French flavours with The Way of Arles served in duck decanters
Get some French flavours with The Way of Arles served in duck decanters


I quite liked the Azalea Martini, which is inspired by the beautiful but not often visited province of Guizhou in China. It comes served with a lychee sphere, though I am not sure if you are meant to eat it on its own or put it in your drink. What I liked about this drink is that you could taste the alcohol, rather than have everything else hide that flavour.

The Azalea Martini comes served with a lychee sphere
The Azalea Martini comes served with a lychee sphere


For the non-drinker or the designated driver, there are non-alcoholic cocktails as well. The Marmara Collins is inspired by the region of Turkey it is named after, which is famous for its figs. This mocktail gives you the cocktail experience without the alcohol.

There are also non-alcoholic cocktails on offer at the Living Room Bar
There are also non-alcoholic cocktails on offer at the Living Room Bar


Food

Nibbles with your drinks is important. I can't talk about the meals or their famous high tea, but the snacks I tried are worth going to the bar just to enjoy them. They include the savoury and the sweet, and all the ones I tried were served on spoons. Though some need to be picked up with your hand or you use the provided cracker to eat them, most are just eaten straight from the spoon.

Cooking up some snacks in the kitchen at the Living Room Bar
Cooking up some snacks in the kitchen at the Living Room Bar


Don't let the Instagram worthiness of the offerings make you think that they are not tasty too. Yes, they go over the top a little when it comes to presentation, but as any good chef knows, if you delight the eyes, the tongue will be ready for a great taste experience.

Food at the Living Room Bar is Instagram worthy and tastes great too
Food at the Living Room Bar is Instagram worthy and tastes great too


The verdict

Anyone can do cocktails these days, and in fact, it seems like every little cafe, restaurant and bar does indeed do them. So finding a bar that is going beyond the standard offerings with mature flavours and original inspirations is great. Go to the Living Room Bar at the W to have a quiet drink or two with a friend, enjoy the shared experiences with groups, and have some inspired and 'gram worthy food while you are there.

Ready for a Flight of the Senses
Ready for a Flight of the Senses


The author enjoyed cocktails at the Living Room Bar as a guest of the W Hotel.
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*Roy Chambers was invited as a guest
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Why? The Living Room Bar launches Flight of the Senses Cocktails in cooperation with London's famous Oriole Bar
When: Monday to Thursday 5 to 11 pm, Friday to Sunday 11 am to 11 pm
Where: If you are driving, then enter off 81 N Quay, Brisbane City, and if you are walking, then head up the elevators at the entrance at the corner of George and Adelaide Street
Cost: Cocktails from $20, Mocktails from $14
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