The prime time to secure a seat and put a drink in your hand at Pleasure Club is 11pm. This is the moment when the tunes blasting from the ’50s jukebox are replaced by the evening’s live entertainment. And the “dark menu” – which adds five classic cocktails to the eight-strong signature list – is passed out, a sure sign that the best is still yet to come.
This psychedelic subterranean bar by Odd Culture Group (The Duke of Enmore, The Old Fitz, Odd Culture) was once home to an X-rated video shop. And that debaucherous spirit lives on in the plush “pleasure lounge” (which doubles as a green room for performers), and a bunch of dimly lit nooks to lose yourself in. There’s also a pool table for the sharks, and tight menu of hot dogs with classic trimmings available to keep you upright until the club’s coveted 4am licence runs out.
Behind the bar, a dedicated cocktail lab fuels the world-class drinks program courtesy of group beverage manager Sam Kirk and Matt Whiley (ex-Re–). From the signature “Pleasure Story” list Broadsheet tried the Passion Pop, a grown-up take on the goon-adjacent namesake mixing passionfruit marigold (a native Australian leaf), clarified passionfruit juice, yuzushu and lemon myrtle Campari. And from the dark menu, a fiery watermelon Margarita.
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