Solera Bar is small but has a luxurious feel. It occupies the first floor of a sandstone building built in 1845 for the Australian Gaslight Company. There's room for 100 people across two spaces, which feature ornate and modern interiors complete with a gilded marble and blue tile bar; warm wood; and velvet seating in deep blues and greens. There’s a small outdoor space with Australian natives, and the lift has been transformed into a private booth.
The bar’s entrance features tracks from the old rail system that once carried coal from the wharf that was here.
In line with the interior, champagne is a big focus. The list includes big names such as Moët & Chandon and Veuve Clicquot, and lesser-known, difficult-to-find small producers such as Leclerc Briant, Jérome Dehours and Ulysse Collin.
The cocktail list includes an Apple of Louisiana, served in a vessel with a shapely blown-glass tube similar to a teapot spout. Toasted rye is poured over absinthe jelly and drops of rock sugar are added for a caramel finish. The drink is stirred with ice and the glass topped with a shortbread-cookie lid. A shot of cider is served on the side to cleanse the palate.
Solera doesn’t have a full kitchen, so the food is based on a deli offering, such as a Reuben sandwich made with sous vide corned beef and pastrami and brined Australian Wagyu beef, sauerkraut and bialy rolls.
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