I know a place is hidden, but once you know about it, its presence becomes glaringly obvious. A tiny door on Alexandra Parade, just round from Brunswick Street is lit by a yellow light. An LED sign suggesting that cocktails are served inside bodes well for those who appreciate the ironic intent.
Once inside, you’ll be greeted with enough space for you and five of your closest friends, each trying to make sense of how a 20 square metre venue could exist and survive. But then there’s the rear door. It leads to an incredibly large, sun-drenched courtyard, and suddenly everything falls into place. Indeed, the unassuming entrance and front bar are a mere precursor to this incredible shrine to sunshine. The vast wall plays host to an incredible mural by Makatron from the Everfresh crew, helping the space to become part of the neighbourhood.
Gourmet hot dogs are roasting away to keep the tank full. A classic Yard Dog is the entry level at $4 or you can option up with sides and condiments to make a monster. The Lil’ Spicy Pancho Dog resembles an awesome burrito with sour cream, black beans and jalapenos, definitely taking the humble dog toward quality cuisine territory rarely seen outside NYC.
A list of classic cocktails is the work of one bartender, namely Sarah Miller. Formerly of the Kodiak Club and Gin Palace, Miller tends the tiny bar at the entrance and puts out some quality, well-balanced drinks, utilising the succinct but solid spirit offering.
Her cocktail making is interspersed with cracking the top off beers that are of the quality boutique variety. Come summer, the beer opening will be more frantic and the introduction of cocktail jugs will be heralded by the thirsty hoards enjoying the sun. Grab a big Palomo with Tequila, lime and sparking grapefruit or a classic Pimms for just $30.
I Know A Place
Rear 451 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy (Entrance via Alexandra Parade)
Thu to Sat 5pm–1am