Taking over the space that was Bottleneck Bar, Apothecary is the new venture from the folks behind Eu-de-Vie. And like its neighbour, Apothecary is all about edgy cocktails. Where it differs is by offering a cocktail degustation of three different drinks, all based on a theme.
Philip Gandevia heads Apothecary. “I started out at Eau De Vie, then moved to the Roosevelt, so when the chance came up to do something here, it was like coming home,” Gandevia says. Apothecary aims to, “Offer drinks that are normally only seen in cocktail competitions – drinks that are creative, without being wanky or gimmicky.”
Apothecary is tiny – there's a communal table, a four-seater beside it, and what Gandevia describes as “kissing booths” (high tables and stools, partitioned off by thick curtains) along the walls. The tones have darkened since the Bottleneck days, thanks to exposed brick and dark wood. A handsome vintage cabinet houses period cocktail instruments, and a taxidermy duck watches over drinkers. Behind the bar is a chemistry class worth of vials and beakers.
The idea at Apothecary is that you come for three cocktails (no beer or wine is kept). There are 12 cocktails on the menu, divided into four themes. Down the Garden Path climaxes with the Beet Drop, a mix of fig-infused port, beetroot, tarragon, egg and chocolate. His and Hers, designed for date nights, begins with a Champagne cocktail and ends with a punch spiked with aphrodisiacal syrups. A rotating theme will change once a month and be somewhat topical. Currently it's bacon (in honour of Australian Bacon Week) and includes the Big Kahuna with bacon bourbon, cognac, pineapple, pomegranate, Sriracha and black-pepper smoke.
If you're not up for the whole shebang, you can order cocktails individually. Eau-de-Vie's bottled cocktails are also available. For the complete experience, Gandevia recommends making a booking, and ideally, setting aside a couple of hours to enjoy the three drinks. “There will be a bit of theatre involved,” he says.
229 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst
Thu to Sat 6pm–late