What struck me as a sports bar heaved a collective (and gutturally Germanic) sigh of relief when the throbbing mass of suits – there for Happy Hour $12 jugs of Heineken (between 5pm and 7pm weekdays) – gave way to couples and casual, relaxed diners. Pushing through to the dark, cave-like interior, one is rewarded with a spot of Teutonic sophistication – largely credited to stellar Bar Manager Luke Reimann. That said, his beautiful Düsseldorf co-star Mila represents the new chef’s menu admirably. Luke’s Blue Cheese Martini ($19), arriving decorated with strawberries and wedge of blue, shows off Crystal Head Vodka in a way that’d make Dan Aykroyd smile. It’s a shoe-in with Gorgonzola-stuffed Zucchini Blossoms ($14); while the Rum Chocolate Manhattan ($22) sets off the Rangers Valley Angus 300-day Grain Fed Steak ($28) a treat. It’s my first real contender for 2014’s best pub steak. A hint of dark cherry that Luke describes as “stuff imported from Germany that my aunty makes” elevates the Stagger Lee Julep ($18) into ‘the best mint julep update I’ve tried’ territory, perfect with a Chorizo Artisan Pizza ($19). This one is Mila’s recommendation, and despite being more Europe than Italy, it wins me completely with chorizo, caramelized onion, and lashings of piquillo pepper mayo.
2A Bligh Street, Sydney
Ph: (02) 9223 0037 theflynn.com.au
Pub Bistro, Cocktail $$-$$$