When Lisa Kelly first opened 1806, her intentions were to assist those aspiring to a hospitality career to learn and flourish in a cocktail venue environment. The bar was born from a love of business, alcohol and a desire to inspire. Set up in the building that formerly played host to Barry Humphries' Tiki and John’s Crazy House, 1806 has utilised the stage space for the bar to showcase the entertaining nature of cocktail making.
There’s no question that the heart and soul of 1806 lies in its cocktail list. The carefully constructed liquid menu begins in the year 1806, when the word "cocktail" was first defined in print. There's a concoction to represent each decade from that year to now and each entry is given context through a detailed history of where the drink comes from, who first mixed it, who first drank it and how it has evolved over time.
Be sure to try one of the more unique cocktails for which they’re known, such as the lemon custard margarita, but don't neglect the listed classics – take the time to understand their stories and make use of one of the most knowledgeable bar teams in Melbourne – they have won a number of awards that confirm that passion and skill. They also run classes which involve drinking a fair bit and learning a lot.
The atmosphere can be quiet and calm at times, allowing you the opportunity to concentrate on your cocktail and conversation. Take your time and order another.