Johnny’s Green Room

Johnny’s Green Room is a rooftop bar in the landmark King and Godfree complex on a prime Carlton corner – Lygon and Faraday streets – which is also home to King and Godfree Espresso Bar and King and Godfree Deli and Grocer. Entry is via King and Godfree Lane, where a lift takes you up to level three. As you walk out onto the open-air space, the aspect is immediately stunning: a 360-degree view around Melbourne.

Peach terrazzo benches (made from repurposed steps dating back to the ’50s) are topped with navy-blue cushions, brick dividing walls, enormous potted plants and marble-topped tables. A neon-lit Sirena “Tonno” (tuna) sign has been carefully restored after sitting atop the building for decades, and a 15-metre-long bar serves an impressive drinks list.

The bar menu is all about modern-day Italo snacks designed to sit alongside a Victorian wine or Aperol spritz on tap – best enjoyed in the afternoon sun. Think calamari fritti with rocket and lemon aioli; ham and mozzarrella croquettes; and Appelation oysters sold by the piece.

From the pizza oven, your options might include a Puttanesca-style pie studded with olives, capers, and achovies; a mortadella number loaded with potato, rosemary and buffalo mozzarella; or a classic margherita with fior di latte, basil and san marzano tomatoes. There are burgers, too, for those chasing a two-handed feed.

The rooftop is big enough to comfortably fit 200 people – which it does consistently throughout the warmer months. In winter, a smattering of open fireplaces keep Johnny’s humming.

Updated: October 20th, 2021

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