Margaritas, a mariachi band and a Naked Lady in each hand... what more could you ask for on a Wednesday night? Overtaking Spice Cellar's spot on Elizabeth Street is Barrio Chino's new venture – Barrio Cellar: a late night Mexican cantina bar that trades until 3am.
At a time when the Labor Party seems to stand for little more than getting back into power, this place harks back to the days when it used to stand for something: the workers. It’s guaranteed to bring a tear to the eye to anyone who remembers the glory days of Whitlam, Hawke and Wran.
Fringe Bar’s black and white checkered dance floor is gone, and like the mythical creature from which it takes its name, The Unicorn sprinkles some intrigue into the Paddo pub scene.
With “no pokies, and no gambling of any kind,” The Merton Hotel is “very family-oriented,” explains Bar Manager Jake Dylan. He’s handsome, personable, and a wedding singer on weekends (which accounts for the pub’s great playlist).
“Are you going to search me,” the giggling girl at the table next to us asks. Wearing rubber gloves, we're about to dive into a Tortita Ahogada ($12), the messiest dish in the cantina.