With five successful bars running in Sydney, Terrigal and Paris, the duo behind Pocket Group decided to bring its small-bar culture to the north-west with its latest venture – Crooked Tailor.
“Castle Hill is an untapped market for small venues,” says co-owner Karl Schlothauer who started Pocket Group with co-owner Christophe Lehoux in 2009. He chose the new area for its young population and lack of similar venues. “Crooked Tailor is a little more intimate than the bigger pubs/bistros and bars in the area at the moment. There’s nothing else like it.”
Keeping to its theme of haberdashery and homey interiors, Crooked Tailor is an extension of the original Pocket Bar, Stitch Bar and Button Bar. It takes on a crooked personality of its own, with a glasshouse-style entrance complete with recycled timber windows and a wall lined with planter boxes. Through the middle archway is the main bar area filled with cosy leather booths, intimate lighting and a handcrafted bar. “We built a lot of the venue from scratch,” Schlothauer says. “The 15,000 US coins that make the bar top are pretty wicked – that was Chris’ project. We’re planning on adding a mezzanine level which we think will be quickly popular.”
The menu offers a range of moreish burgers such as the BLT burger with Angus chuck and brisket, bacon, truss tomatoes, Jarlsberg cheese, chipotle, pickles and mustard, as well as Mexican snacks and salads to accompany their house cocktails and weekly specials.
“At the moment we’re focusing on changing the seasonal cocktails every fortnight; so trying to use regular ingredients in different ways. We use a lot of homemade mixers like rosemary vinegar; peach and rosemary syrup; and orange and cardamom." The spritz has been a favourite, with thyme-infused aperol, orange soda and prosecco.
There are plans to expand the menu and add an alfresco dining area for weekend lunches, too.