The Carrington in Surry Hills has announced it will be closing its doors for the last time on Sunday August 31. Head of the Drink'n'Dine group, Jaime Wirth, commented that "our landlord has been wanting to redevelop the site for some time and with the downturn in trade over the last six months and the restriction of our license to use the upstairs levels, we decided the time was right to call it quits and focus on the other venues."
The Carrington was one of the first pubs opened by the hospitality group Drink'n'Dine, and when we walked into The Carrington, we knew good things were in store for Sydney's drinking (and dining) scene. Three years ago, pubs were generally smelly, outdated boozing holes that were pouring the same beers and were full of noisy pokies.
The Drink'n'Dine' group offered a youthful alternative; themed pubs with a variety of craft beers, better wine lists and cool decor. Their pubs are places you want to hang out in all afternoon. The Carrington opened as a Spanish-themed diner and was updated recently with quirky animal motifs, moody multicoloured lamps lighting and a new, Spanish tapas-style restaurant addition.
Drawing on influences from Barcelona, it served pintxos, dishes braised in sherry and share plates of A-grade jamon. The best embutidos (preserved meats) were sourced from the likes of La Boqueria,, while chef Jamie Thomas turned out Iberian dishes with flare for the restaurant and still delivered on hearty Spanish inspired pub-food for those at the bar.
After the refurbishment, the dining space transformed into Chica Linda, with reinterpretations of Central and South American dishes, designed for communal eating. Stand-outs were the king crab diablo and Puerto Rican roast pork and arepas, Coca-Cola rice and beans and flamed txistora. The menu was an undeniably fun, particularly alongside a cocktail menu that boasts a Panamargarita (tequila, aloe vera, jalapeño, agave) and a banana colada.
Get in while you can before the doors shut.