Located on the ground floor of the five-storey, heritage-listed Pacific House, this swish bar and diner lures in passers-by from Lonsdale Street, who can stay put or head upstairs to the DJ-driven Music Room (level two), Thai restaurant BKK (level four) or open-air oasis Her Rooftop (level five) – all run by HQ Group (Arbory Bar & Eatery, Arbory Afloat).
While a drink at Her Rooftop is almost mandatory, staying at the marble-clad street level has its advantages. Head chef Nada Thomas runs an elegant menu of Med-inspired share plates, such as lamb skewers with Moorish spices and sumac; ricotta with lemon, anchovies and toast; and a couple of pastas including spaghetti with prawns, chilli, garlic and pangrattato.
To drink, the Her French 75 – a tapped house creation – is a highlight of the cocktail list, mixing blood orange and hibiscus liqueur, Melbourne Gin Company gin and sparkling wine. The classics – Aviation, Martini, Vesper – are also well represented, while the wine list features European and Australian bottles of slightly more palate weight than you’ll find upstairs, where the fiery food calls for aromatic whites and lighter reds.
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