Popcorn
The most abundant free bar snack in Sydney, tequila bar Tio’s adds pasilla chilli and paprika to theirs, while The Little Guy uses Morrocan spices and a Cajun mix coats the popcorn at House of Crabs. Hinky Dinks and The Angry Pirate also lace popcorn with paprika.

Tio’s
4–14 Foster Street,
Surry Hills

The Little Guy
87 Glebe Point Road,
Glebe

Hinky Dinks
185 Darlinghurst Road,
Darlinghurst

The Angry Pirate
125 Redfern Street, Redfern

House of Crabs
Level 1, 305 Cleveland Street,
Redfern

Peanuts
Shady Pines Saloon provides bowls of peanuts with their shells on, the remnants of which can be tossed to the floor. This small act of recklessness defines the bar’s ethos of casting aside responsibilities and having a damn good time. Button Bar is another that serves their peanuts shell-on.

Shady Pines Saloon
Shop 4, 256 Crown Street,
Darlinghurst

Button Bar
65 Foveaux Street,
Surry Hills

Cheese and bacon balls
Perhaps not the best one to eat on a date, but this finger-staining snack from your childhood lunchbox is as addictive as they come (owing to a hefty whack of MSG, no doubt), and is great with beer. You’ll find this one at the Oxford Tavern in Petersham.

Oxford Tavern
1 New Canterbury Road,
Petersham

Kri kri
Kri kri is a crunchy, sweet, wheat-based coating added to peanuts. Shirt Bar in the city, which is indeed a shop selling shirts as well as a whisky bar come nightfall, rolls these peanuts in their own spice mix to serve free with a drink.

Shirt Bar
7 Sussex Lane,
Sydney

Banana chips
Top points for originality and snack-to-drinks matching goes to Lobo Plantation, with its homemade salted banana chips. A classic combination with rum, which the bar is also known for.

Lobo Plantation
Basement, Lot 1, 209 Clarence Street,
Sydney

Spiced almonds
Aperitivo wine bar Parlour Lane, situated on the ground floor of designer boutique hotel QT Sydney, offers spiced almonds – although it changes the snack every few months.

Parlour Lane
49 Market Street,
Sydney

Pretzels
It’s fitting that one of the more traditional snacks on this list is served at The Baxter Inn, with its basement speakeasy vibe. Endless top-ups of the pretzel bowls will keep you happily drinking to quench your thirst, just the way they like it.

Baxter Inn
Rear Basement 152–156 Clarence Street,
Sydney

Toasted corn
A crunchier cousin to popcorn, toasted corn is like snack crack. Deep-fried or roasted and rolled in spices similar to those found inside a Doritos packet, it’s no secret it’s the salt that makes toasted corn so addictive. Classy cognac bar, Ramblin’ Rascal Tavern, serves this by the cupful.

Ramblin’ Rascal Tavern
60 Park Street,
Sydney

Pork scratching
A unique establishment built around an excellent vinyl collection, it’s no surprise Mojo Record Bar did something a little different with its drinking-snack offering. Pork scratchings – fried strips of pork crackling – beer and rock’n’roll are the ideal set-up for long chats with good mates.

Mojo Record Bar
Basement, 73 York Street,
Sydney