Barrio Cellar and @RiversideBrew Cellar Door

Popped into a couple of previously not visited venues on the weekend, which are at opposite of some sort of spectrum.


Barrio Cellar is a relatively new addition to the increasing number of CBD bars that one accesses down a flight of stairs from street level. Unlike places like Stitch Bar and Uncle Ming’s there is clear signage indicating Barrio Cellar’s presence. It can be found on the northern side of Elizabeth Street just west of Martin Place. I popped in on a Friday arvo for a quick catch up with a colleague and the crowds were flooding in.

No prizes for guessing this bar’s big ticket item. Some beautiful bottles adorn the bar and signs proclaim the ubiquitousness of tequila. There is one beer on tap and a functional list of bottled beer including a Feral or two. I like how you can drink at the bar and watch the clearly skilled bar staff at work. Food menu looks promising and the burger has received good reviews. I tried the fried olives, which were definitely aided by the blue cheese sauce. All up a cool joint.

Riverside Brewery

For the next couple of months I will be chauffeuring a daughter on Saturdays runs to the Hills district of Sydney. That’s given me the excuse to finally visit Riverside Brewery and its cellar door. Its opening hours (2 – 6pm not 12 to 4 as indicated by Google (grrr)) coincide nicely with rehearsal times.
Riverside Brewery seems to have survived the shock departure of its founding brewer, Dave Padden (gidday, Dave) and it is creating some interesting heavy beers as well as maintaining its solid core range.

Scenes from a brewery

The cellar door has a small area with boxes and crates to sit upon as well as a bar to belly up to and have a chat to the guys. Tasters, growler fills and bottles are available and on this particular Saturday there was some one offs available.

I was glad they had small glasses available because both tasters I had were big ABV beers. Anything above 8 is a big ‘UN in my opinion. The Tzar Imperial Red Ale and the Yeasts of Bourbon were 9 and 10 respectively. The YoB was stunning. Boozy in a Liquor soaked Christmas pudding kind of way. The Tzar is a challenging beer. Tea and fennel are in the mix and both are apparent. Plenty going on – but for mine, I’m not sure of the combo.

Got my growler filled, bought a unique long neck  (Othello’s Curse) and have an option that is better than sitting in a carpark in West Pennant Hills for a couple of hours. Happy Days.

The Tzar – a complex drink