08 October 2011

The Dispensary Launch: Floating Pop Up Bar, Sydney Harbour (6 Oct 2011)

Floating Pop Up Bar, Farm Cove near Mrs Macquaries Chair
Water taxi from Man o' War Steps Wharf near Sydney Opera House
Thurs - Sat, 6 pm til midnight, 7–8, 13–15, 20–22 Oct 2011

Pop Up Bar with excellent views

“Before any great bar, there's a premise: One idea that gives it a reason to exist. For the second year running, Drambuie gives the opportunity of a lifetime: A chance to create and run your very own bar”

Thanks to Daniela Penno from Polkadot PR for inviting me to the launch of the new floating pop up bar on Sydney Harbour. It's only on for 3 weeks so you'll have to be quick to check it out. The views are excellent and as long as there's good weather you'll feel pretty comfortable on board. If it's windy then you'll probably feel as if you're in a drunken sway before downing your first Drambuie cocktail. The Dispensary Signature Drink ($15) of Drambuie, lemongrass and ginger ice tea was my favourite of the drinks menu. It was refreshing and palatable. For something a bit sweeter but still with a lethal kick go for the Honey Juleps ($13) of Drambuie, pink grapefruit juice, lemon juice, Mint Leaves and Angostura Orange Bitters although I wish there was more in the glass. The Black Donald ($13) of Drambuie, Reposado Tequila, Chambord, fresh lime juice, ginger beer was one of the stronger tasting cocktails and if you want to better appreciate the taste of Drambuie then head for the simpler Libertine ($9) of Drambuie, fresh lime, dash of soda or Drambuie and Ginger Ale ($9).

Chef Cristian Di Sandri from La Tana is at the helm of the kitchen, and it's a pretty darn small kitchen so hence the limited food menu. I didn't get a chance to try the Mini burger plate ($10) with wagyu beef and truffle burger and chicken and turmeric burger but both the Scottish scallop skewers ($14) and Tender lamb shoulder skewers ($12) were both pretty tasty and easy to eat with one hand while drinking with the other. The English cheese platter ($14) looked pretty good which I also didn't get to try although I'm suspecting I would probably prefer olives instead of walnuts on the plate. I believe the water taxi from Man o' War steps wharf near Sydney Opera House is free to catch to The Dispensary although I'm not too sure how often it goes but I'm suspecting every 15-30 mins perhaps.

PROS: Excellent water views, Nice atmosphere (in good weather), Fairly decent priced cocktails for the view and taste
CONS: Only open for a very limited time, Might not be pleasant during heavy rain or windy days, Need to catch a water taxi (but it's part of the adventure), Smallish toilets
MUST TRY: The Dispensary Signature Drink, Visiting soon before it ends, Remembering it's the bar not you that's swaying
WORTH TRYING: Lamb skewers, Scallop skewers, Honey Juleps, Black Donald, Drambuie and Ginger Ale

Bar with one of Sydneys best views

Drambuie cocktails in the making

Drambuie and Ginger Ale ($9) — simple yet refreshing

Ruby Bismuth - Drambuie, Lemon Juice, Grenadine Syrup, dash of Bitters, Lemonade ($9) — one of the sweetest drinks on the menu

Black Donald - Drambuie, Reposado Tequila, Chambord, Fresh Lime Juice, Ginger Beer ($13) — strong and flavoursome

The Dispensary Signature Drink - Drambuie, Lemongrass and Ginger Ice Tea ($15) — refreshing and nice palatable flavours

Honey Juleps - Drambuie, Pink Grapefruit Juice, Lemon Juice, Mint Leaves, Angostura Orange Bitters ($13) — strong with a bit of sweetness to balance

Libertine - Drambuie, fresh lime, dash of soda ($9) — I prefer it with the lime squeezed

Dolce Vita - Drambuie, Champagne ($13) — makes champagne even more lethal

Tender lamb shoulder skewers served with a mint and cucumber yoghurt dipping sauce ($12) — quite tasty

Scottish scallop skewers served with zucchini and saffron dipping sauce ($14) — easy to eat and tasty

Mini burger plate with wagyu beef and truffle burger and chicken and turmeric burger served with mixed endive ($10) — didn't get to try this one so not sure what it's like

An English cheese platter with a selection of cured meats, figs, walnuts and lavash bread ($14) — would probably prefer large sized olives instead of walnuts although I didn't get to try this dish

Chef Cristian Di Sandri from La Tana working in a very small boat kitchen

The Premise winners: Matilda Swan and Simon Connett

The launch crowd

Cheeky photo — literally

Mint and light features

City skyline view

Cocktails with a water view

Bar area

Drambuie poster and Limited Water notice

Great water views of Sydney landmarks

The Dispensary Floating Pop Up Bar

On board The Dispensary

Catch the water taxi from Man O' War steps wharf

Small toilet area and RSA Marshalls on board

View Larger Map
Premise - 'the Dispensary' Pop Up Bar on Urbanspoon


Sara - Belly Rumbles said...

Not sure why I get so excited when I hear of another pop up, be it bar, restaurant or lane way experience. I hope the weather fines up quickly as it isn't on for long. Wish this hap popped up a bit closer to summer.

penny aka jeroxie said...

What a great pop up. Bummer that it won't be around when I return from SG.

sugarpuffi said...

wow catching a water taxi! sounds way too cool. dont think i can fit it into my oct schedule though :(

Simon Leong said...

hi sara, during summer would definitely be better for weather and for the sun to stay up longer. hope you get a chance to check it out.

hi penny, i'm sure there'll be plenty more pop up bars to come.

hi sugarpuffi, you are certainly a very busy eater this october. hopefully you'll get a chance to visit it because something like this probably won't happen for a while.

andrewm said...

Hi there,

Do you need to book or just turn up?
6 of us wanted to go for dinner and drinks on Thursday but can't find any info/contact details.


Simon Leong said...

hi andrew, i believe no bookings required. just turn up at man o war wharf to catch free water taxi to it. hope you get to check it out :-)

Simon Food Favourites Map

View Simon Food Favourites in a larger map Key: BLUE - Location visit and review PINK - Simon Favourites and places offering something special

Small Bars in Sydney map

View Small Bars in Sydney in a larger map