The Bird Watching Society
Peek out the front door, and you can see cars rolling by on Chapel Street. Spin around, and you’re in a hippy oasis of squishy couches, potted trees and makeshift marquees.
Welcome to The Bird Watching Society, an outdoor bar from Elliot Rothfield, a man who excels at creating lavish, escapist environments. His day job? Organising music festivals Let Them Eat Cake and Strawberry Fields.
The former carpark and display apartment site is concealed down the end of Cecil Place. There’s no signage to help you find it (look for the alleyway next to Meister Athlete) but once you do, you’ll forget you’re in the middle of Prahran.
Prior to opening in early 2015, Rothfield’s crew from Strawberry spent two months adding trees, a toilet block, a makeshift wooden bar, skate ramp and rickety pool table.
Soft soul, disco and jazz are never more than background noise. The real focus is on relaxing with a Fat Yak or Melbourne Bitter (both on tap), or sharing a cocktail jug (strawberry mojito, Bloody Mary, gin fizz) or shisha with your mates. Manato Hikawa (ex-D.O.C.) turns out crispy pizzas right up until close; and kids and dogs run wild.