Tucked away in the back streets of Rozelle, The Welcome Hotel is a lovely old boozer that's been around for 130 years. But its current iteration may be its best. Rejigged following an ownership change, it now sports a cosy public bar, bustling dining room and a splendid leafy terrace. Add to that a stellar range of craft beers, a bulging wine cellar and some of the best pub dining in the Inner West.
Head chef Daniel Mulligan (ex-Pilu) has redesigned the pub's menu, and the result is some fine Italian-inspired fare. Start with fried zucchini flowers with goat’s cheese, hazelnuts and thyme, and then move onto mains such as seared ruby tuna with heirloom tomato salsa and black olives. Cap it all off with a lemon thyme panna cotta or an affogato.
Similar thoughtfulness has gone into to the wine list, which boasts a terrific selection of Italian vino, as well as some agreeable drops from local vineyards. Craft beer is another focal point – expect to find brews from Riverside, Ekim, Hargreaves Hill, McLaren Vale and Rocks Brewing on tap. The extensive bottle list is also noteworthy, offering tasty ales from small indie brewers in the US, Italy and New Zealand.
The Welcome Hotel 91 Evans Street, Rozelle (02) 9810 1323
Hours Mon to Sat 11am–midnight Sun 11am–10pm