Whatever you do, don't ask for VB. That'll get you strange looks. Why? Well because this old Darlo boozer (formerly the Palace Hotel) has been scrubbed up and transformed from the anonymous corner watering hole it used to be. No, the Local Taphouse is now about beer- but not just any type of beer. It's about the new and exciting, the weird and the wacky, and ultimately, the stuff you can't get anywhere else.
Inside the Taphouse, you're in classic pub territory – albeit territory a few shades nicer than your local. The décor is a mix of old wooden floorboards, tiles on the wall, retro bookcases, old recliners and a few birdcages (which are sans actual birds). Downstairs is where the action's mainly at: the triangular room has the bar at back and plenty of street-level tables to park at. The first floor houses the pub's restaurant and up another level is the pleasant, although small, rooftop drinking area.
But back to the suds. The Local taps 20 beers. And if that wasn't enough, they also do another 20 by the bottle. The menu changes regularly – it's likely to be different between two visits. Expect beers from Australian indie brewers like Stone & Wood, 4 Pines and even Young Henry's. Elsewhere on the tap list, expect to find beers from America, Europe and all points in between.
If all that beer is making you light-headed, head upstairs to the pub's bistro. The menu offers pub grub comfort food, most of which is designed to be matched with your beer. The towering burgers come in a few different formats (smoked ale beef and pulled pork are two of the more popular options) and make a solid choice, as do the pizzas and the great-big-chunks-of-meat options. There's also cheese plates and if you've got room, sweets like ginger beer sticky date pudding.
The Local Taphouse is not your run-of-the-mill local. It has a theme and it does it very well, and its cheery service, old-school fitout and exciting drinks menu just wrap everything up neatly. If you're a fan of the amber fluid, the Taphouse is calling.