Yes, there’s been some pain in local drinking circles, but there’s also good news, too, as evinced by the diversity of recent bar openings across Perth. Welcome to your spring drinking hit-list.
Fenway is the new name of Subiaco landmark Paddy Maguire’s, only reimagined as a Boston-Irish bar by the funsters at team Varsity. Worn wooden booths play nicely with the Old World, not-quite-a-sports-bar theme, as does the menu of burgers, sandwiches and fried chicken. Tap and package beers range from Swan Draught to craft while cocktails stick to the classics. And did we mention dogs are welcome on the porch?
Bar. Restaurant. Bottle shop. Cafe. This former printer in West Leederville is all this and more. More than two years in the making, Besk is an ambitious neighbourhood venue with a strong focus on boutique, primarily West Australian producers. Co-owner and Mane Liquor resident booze hound Elliott Moore oversees an expansive beer, wine and spirit inventory while the kitchen keeps time with comforting, elevated pub cooking.
This two-storey bar, cafe and live music venue has been an (extended), seven-year labour of love for father and son Michiel and Konrad de Ruyter. When Lyric Lane isn’t hosting gigs at its 170-person concert space, it’s keeping locals watered with local craft beer and a cellar big on Australian producers. Drop by during the day for brunching and a burger-style breakfast menu on weekends. Guests seated outside are, again, welcome to bring pets.
“We really wanted to create something with our own identity,” says sommelier Sarah Atkinson. In July, Atkinson and chef husband Liam did just that when they opened this intimate French-inspired restaurant and wine bar. While Liam knocks it out the park with imaginative Gallic bar snacks – vegan crudites! Crab toast! – Atkinson is all over the drinks side of things including maintaining the tight but exciting wine list zeroing in on good-time European and Australian wines.
Technically, the bar at the front of Wanwipar “Dao” Thanasothorn and Punchita Wangpaichitr’s home-style Thai restaurant is a holding station for the dining room proper, but it works as a destination in its own right. Spice-sympathetic wines, cocktails and beers are the order of the day, although booze-free options such as the house-made butterfly pea flower tea are worth taking for a spin, too.