There’s nothing like being warm in winter, but keeping warm doesn’t have to mean staying home. Just as there are bars built for the warmer months, there are bars designed for the colder ones. Bars where you feel so cosy and warm you could be at home, only there’s a fire and the drinks are better. Here are five of the best.
Don’t be fooled by the nautical theme – this Carlton dive bar is the perfect place to spend a cold winter’s evening. Dim and cosy, the Beaufort offers American fare (burgers and ribs) and an extensive list of spirits and cocktails. Try the White Whale, made with Bulleit Rye whiskey, vermouth, lemon juice, pomegranate and mandarin.
Possibly the warmest bar north of the river, candle-lit Neighbourhood Wine has a roaring fireplace, couches and a long timber bar. Food is hearty and European in style, and a roast is offered every Sunday for lunch. As its name suggests it has a strong wine list, but why not go for something bolder, such as a Manhattan made with Bulleit Rye whiskey, or its house Old Fashioned made with Bulleit Bourbon.
There’s no fireplace inside Heartbreaker, but the cherry-red neon sign gives off the same feeling of warmth. Besides, you’ll be hot enough once you’ve worked up a sweat dancing to the ’80s tracks playing from the jukebox. Cocktails come quickly here, too – the Manhattans, Martinis, Old Fashioneds and Negronis are all pre-batched.
This bar is inspired by something you’d find in the European Alps, so its an obvious choice for winter. A central timber bench is softly lit from above, and floor-to-ceiling racks heave with wines and whiskies. Couches and an open fireplace occupy a smaller room out the back.
Whisky and Alement
There’s nothing like a whisky in winter – fortunately, there are more than 800 to choose from at Whisky and Alement. Try a nip of Caol Ila Scotch whisky; or a measure of big, peaty Lagavulin.
Le Bon Ton
51 Gipps Street, Collingwood
Rupert on Rupert
73 Rupert Street, Collingwood
304 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy
Level 1, 150-156 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy
122 Russell Street, Melbourne
Marquis of Lorne
411 George Street, Fitzroy
19 Grey Street, St Kilda
Joe’s Shoe Store
233 High Street, Northcote
48 Smith Street, Collingwood
348 Burwood Road, Hawthorn
This article is presented in partnership with World Class.