Eat & Drink

My Summer Essentials

1) Keystone Festival Bar

You know you’re at a cool gig (Andrew Weatherall) when you’re dancing next to some of Sydney’s best DJs – Paul ‘Drop Some Drums’ Mac & Seymour Butz – on one of the best sprung dance floors in town! Rain made the pop-up Hyde Park Barracks venue even more exciting, with humidity steaming up the already throbbing dance floor. Tickets are still available for January 18-21 and 25-28. Throw $50 on top of the ticket price to enjoy a bird’s eye view from the raised VIP section with two hours of beverages! This includes the refreshing Sydney Festival Cocktail featuring Absolute Vodka, vanilla, POM Wonderful, lemon, mint and ginger beer.

2) VnC Cocktails

Finally a premixed cocktail with taste, bite and a kick like a mule for those nights when you want a classy drink on your couch. Unsurprising it comes from a New Zealander – Shane McKillen – who has thankfully eschewed preservatives, used great natural fruit juices, and premium vodka and tequila. For me the Vodka Mojito (RRP $19.99 / 700ml) went down most smoothly, though I’d have to resample the Pacific Mai Tai and Passionfruit Caprioska to really be sure. Nothing needed to be added to spruce these babies up at all (though ice may help if you find them too strong)!

3) A Flavour of Moscow

Since summer here has definitely changed it’s flavour, why not go the whole hog and indulge in a full seasonal reversal at the fully air-conditioned InterContinental Sydney? Until the 31st January, 2012, they’re running with A Flavour of Moscow theme to celebrate their newly opened InterContinental Moscow Tverskaya. Despite having me at caviar blinis, they whisked me up to the very exciting 31st floor balcony of the Club Lounge for Moscow Mules and a beautifully presented platter of Russian canapés. You can enjoy the same star treatment by staying in a Club guest room or suite, (from $480 per night) during summer. If you’re er… champagne taste, beer budget like me, the Cortile Lounge is doing two-for-one From Russia With Love for $25 between 5pm and 7pm. You’ll also find most of the dishes – pork pelmeni, borscht and bitochki with wagyu beef – appear on the buffet in Café Opera. I even have a review for it coming next week!