The Top 10 Small Bars in Sydney
When it comes to small bars, people are now spoilt for choice - but that doesn't make it any easier to pick a venue for the evening. This top 10 will guide you through the best small bar experiences Sydney has on offer. There are no restrictions: the small bars can be cocktails bars, wine bars or just a friendly place to grab a drink. See for yourself: The top 10 small bars in Sydney.
Sydney Pub Crawls
What better way to explore small bars than a pub crawl. These two routes are particularly easy as they are flat, well connected to transport and can be easily modified. The pub crawls include closing times, reviews, and interactive Google maps showing the routes and bars.
Redfern pub crawl
Sydney pub crawl (CBD)
New Small Bars in Sydney
Last updated December 2014
Trying to stay ahead of the crowds? Why not drop into one of the latest small bars to open their doors:
Following a common theme of part bar, part art space, this venue presents itself in a casual manner while finding the right balance between engaging and fun: 6/10
Opened: August 2014
This hidden yet wonderful European-style small bar is the first in Sydney's Chinatown: 7/10
Opened: July 2014
Knox Street Bar
Despite its unlikely location a block or so down a suburban backstreet in Chippendale, this bar is worth the detour.
Opened: July 2014
The Chip Off The Old Block
There is no gimmickry, no zany theme here: just a well decorated small bar in Chippendale that does a lot of things right: 7/10
Opened: June 2014
The art décor exterior gives way to a modern small bar inside, while delivering some great variations on classic cocktails: 6/10
Opened: May 2014
Ramblin Rascal Tavern
A small bar that has a comfortable vibe, without overdoing it. 8/10
Opened: March 2014
Gone in 2014
Small bars may be demand, but that doesn't mean they'll all survive. While a number of new bars opened, some closed their doors in 2014. The surprising aspect of the closures is that they are mostly centred around the hub of Darlinghurst and Surry Hills.
Gay Bar: a short lived and high concept bar that would have stood a better chance on Oxford Street back in the 1990s.
Cafe Lounge: a much-loved and early innovator closed its doors and said farewell in December 2014.
Foley Lane: a great Spanish bar/restaurant that after two years has been reborn as an Italian eatery.
Name This Bar: the writing was on the wall well before this bar closed. Ear-splitting music and a stop-off for The Party Bus are not ways to endear the love of locals.
Disappointing to see a venue with such promise turn out to be like any number of pubs in the city: 4/10
The Angry Pirate
A venue that is more like a friendly pirate than an angry one: 7/10
Zigi's Art Wine Cheese Bar
The kind of place you want to like with its friendly staff, art space plus the cheese and wine options. But it's let down by poor execution: 5/10
Sydney now has a flourishing small bar scene, and here's how to find the best ones. Each review will show you the best Sydney small bars for dates, drinks with friends, after-work catch-ups or even a quiet spot to read a book. Finding a particular small bar can add to its mystique and unlike the large beer barns that once dominated the drinking landscape, each of Sydney's small bars has a distinct personality of its own. You can settle at one of the bars for the night or happily stroll for a few minutes between your favourites. If you'd like to see a review of your favourite or latest on the small bar scene, drop us an email via the contact page.