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The Croft Institute

Home > Melbourne > Bars | Pubs
Published December 6th 2010
How does one find the most hidden bar in the city? Very easy. Go to the creepiest darkened alley you can find. It has to be filled with dirty garbage bins, some disgusting water, and back onto at least five dumpling houses that rid their waste onto the walkway. This gets rid of the pretenders.

Walk all the way to the end of the alley (preferably at a dead end), and look around. If there is a door with a typical beer sign above it, you may have come across the strangest tavern in town: The Croft Institute.

This bizarre bar in the middle of nowhere - actually, make that the middle of the CBD - lends itself to the people who either know about it, or are brave enough to face Croft Alley to get there.

Once you've followed the instructions on the website (be warned, there's at least a full paragraph of twists and turns), you end up at a small door, leading upwards. Enter, and prepare to be either amazed or frightened. You've just entered into a David Lynch movie. Super creepy. Science-y stuff adorns all the walls, bunsen burners sit on the tables and there is a strange light that isn't quite your normal low-level club fare. This light suggests a scene out of the original Saw film.

So, if you've made it this far, congratulations. You'll be well surprised when you meet the bar staff and their take on some classic drinks. This is why people trek so far off the beaten track: the service is fantastic, and the drinks are great fun. Some cocktails are served in test tubes, and for the strong at heart, the 'syringes' are loaded with alcohol of your choice (needles not included - just press and squirt right into your gob).

Spare a moment and check out the second floor with its grass-topped bar. Surely one of the strangest bars in the city. If you make it, good luck. If you don't (or can't), don't fret: just have a glass on concrete. Harden up. It's worth it.
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Why? To discover something new, and to test your courage.
When: Monday - Thursday 5pm - late / Friday 5pm - 3am / Sat 8pm - 3am / Sunday - Closed
Where: 21 Croft Alley, Melbourne 3000
Cost: Typical inner Melbourne - expensive, but it won't break the bank.
I love your write up of this place!! It sounds intriguing, and makes me curious!! Now I can't wait to go and experience all that eeriness just to find the entrance.
By Jojo.a.gogo - reader
Wednesday, 30th of March @ 09:59 pm
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