The Clock Hotel
You can’t do the Crown Street crawl without a trip to The Clock. It’s the biggest and best-known pub on the strip and everyone winds up there at some point. Its Collins street namesake has been ticking away since 1969, but the building dates back to 1869 – making it one of the original Surry Hills boozers.
The street bar – with its potted greenery, booths and epic clock collection – is a melting pot of corporates, tradies and Surry Hills locals catching up throughout the week. The odd craft beer shows up on tap here, but you’ll find plenty of weird and wonderful brews in the Clock’s bottle shop next door, including a few from Yulli’s across the street.
The whisky room has hundreds of rare and collectable drams from all over the world. Grab a well-made stiff drink here or in the gin-heavy cocktail lounge upstairs – it has enough dark wood and Persian carpet to set the mood. The kitchen’s restaurant-style fare includes veg-forward mains, pasta, and a late-night vegan menu when the chef knocks off.
You can people-watch from the dog-friendly footpath outside, or try for better views on the popular wraparound verandah. On Anzac Day, the interior courtyard doubles as a two-up ring, and punters on the mezzanine above cast their bets down with fishing wire. If you can see straight, it’s a sight to behold.