Having spent the last few years living abroad I now wish to rediscover my home city of Sydney to keep that 'travelling feeling' and share my findings with those that might want a bit of inspiration.
Published August 13th 2013
Food, Wine and Garden Heaven on Willoughby Road
Whilst there are many bars on the North Shore where one can while away the hours... there are few that can fit the brief of a date venue, a place to catch up with friends, somewhere you could take your granny and that's open both day and night. Well, Small Bar in Crows Nest, 85 Willoughby Road is our pick of favourite places to go on an agenda-less weekend as it is the perfect location to see an hour turn into several as you catch up with friends and loved ones. Whilst small is in the name, the place is not too small. A back garden bar, inside main bar and also footpath seating out front ensures there is an area to suit everyone and more than 20 people can be patrons all at one time unlike other small bars (the back garden can fit about 40 people by itself).
Service is always with a smile. You never find any 'too cool for school' hipsters serving behind the bar here. The drinks list is varied and well priced, with bottles of sparkling and vino ranging between $34 and $88. Several variations of beer, cider and scotch are on offer along with all standard spirits and the food menu caters both for sharers and for those wanting a full meal.
Food is plentiful and good value with several items on special throughout the week to tempt people in and a daily lunches priced at an affordable $15. Not many wine bars will serve up share plates with a bottle of wine for less than $50 but this incredible team know how to hit the mark and hit it well doing exactly that at a mere $45 for the two. Through our many visits here we have sampled the mini burgers, rustic fries, antipasto platters, quinoa salad and arancini balls. All meals were tasty and great value for their prices although we have had slightly more lively antipasto platters. Stick to the hot items; they demonstrate the chef's ability which is wasted on cold-cut platters.
Between 2 bars (inside and outside) you're guaranteed great service
Live music on a Sunday from 5pm is always a hit. 3pm is prime time to snag your table in the fairy-land garden out the back. Take your place amongst the wrought iron furniture, wooden benches, fairy lights, tea light candles surrounded by plants and an ivy-wrapped roof. It is truly the perfect location for any multitude of events be it first-date, lunch with your nan, or even a private function. For all those that can't stand the screams of sport on the big screen; this gem of a bar is 100% television free so leave the boys at the Crowie and head down for your Smalls.
Look no further than Small Bar for your drinking and dining needs. You never feel unwelcome, rushed or monitored as you do with other establishments and it is the perfect low key evening whilst still retaining unpretentious class. If you're in the city try out its sister venue; Small Bar on Erskine Street.
Thanks Katherine we really appreciate the review. A lot of long hours and hard work goes in behind the scenes so it's always nice to receive positive feedback. Thanks again and Keep it Small... Small Bar.