East Village is a wonderful multi story tower of a hotel in Darlinghurst. I attended with a long time friend a couple of weeks back and fell in love with the place. I collected my friend from the ground floor bar that looked fantastic (but I didn’t pay it heaps of attention) and we climbed the tower like out-of-breath Rapunzels to experience the rooftop Winter Garden Experience. It is now one of my favourite dining experiences of the year and I cannot wait to return. The rooftop bar will always be there but the dressing of it up as a Winter Garden is only going for one more week. Huge thanks to Push Play Media for the invitation to attend.
EAST VILLAGE VENUE:
The East Village venue feels like a 237 floored building with something wonderful on every level. The lower bar is a fantastic minimalist industrial styled bar that was so comfortable I am keen to head here for pre-drinks prior to the stair climb to the roof on numerous occasions in the future. The climb to the roof is about five stories of an old stair case and it takes longer than you think and may require a breathing stop half way up. BUT when you make it to the top your mind will explode. It is one of the best bar views in Sydney that feels more like it should be in New York.
Between ground floor and roof top I really have no idea what is on the other levels but someone did tell me there is a very nice sport’s club there, a kind of Downton Abbey era Athletic Club – that does have me intrigued!
THE ROOFTOP WINTER GARDEN:
The East Village Roof Top Winter Garden is now one of my favourite venues in Sydney. It was like one of those penthouse apartments in New York with sparkly lights, a city skyline view and wonderful greenery everywhere. To add to the winter theme there is also heaters spotted everywhere giving enough warmth for everyone who makes it this high up. The fairy lights everywhere make it truly magical and after about an hour of being there it started to sprinkle and the efficient waiter pressed a button and shutters slid across the entire roof protecting us from the rain but allowing us to keep seeing that epic view and get elegantly wobbly.
THE DRINKS AND THAT VIEW:
The drinks are of the highest order. As it was a Winter Garden I HAD to kick off the proceedings with a Gluhwein. It was hands down the best mulled wine I have had and no wonder, made with claret, port and cognac among other things. I have been told the mulled cider they offer is even better but I wouldn’t go past that wine. Just sublime and nice and steamy on the roof top – a perfect winter warmer in fancy cognac glasses. They also had an Espresso Martini and a Blue Blazer; a cognac and triple sec flaming cocktail. After these Winter Garden cocktails is there regular cocktail list that sees eight wonders. I worshipped the “Queen Bee” – 42 Below Manuka Vodka, St Germain Elderflower Liqueur, Vermouth, Pineapple, Lemon and Honey – I NEED THIS COCKTAIL AGAIN!!
WHAT WE SMASHED:
For the food menu they offer a lot. Pastas, Poke Bowls and Salads, Sweets and Cheeses, Pub Classics and bun stuff (i.e. burgs). But I kept our food to the tapas styled Winter Garden Menu or the Grazing section and it never disappointed.
- Honey Glazed Ham Board
- Crisp Free Range Pork Belly
- Grilled Halloumi Skewers
- Fried Prawn Cakes
- Spanner Crab Rolls
WHAT WE THOUGHT:
That ham board paired with the gluhwein was a match made in heaven. It was just sublime and I could have eaten two of them to myself. It was like a Christmas ham charcuterie board. I didn’t even need anything after that board, I was sold on this place. The pork belly was nice Asian inspired delightful morsels but they were overshadowed but the greatness of the Fried Prawn Cakes, an inspiring and salivating take on Thai fish cakes. I loved them! Halloumi can never do wrong but the addition of honey, lemon and oregano sauce was a welcome addition. The crab rolls are something I will just always order, they were AOK but nothing to rave about, no pic of them, wasn’t happy with the shot.
I love EAST VILLAGE and will most definitely return – can’t wait to see what they do for their spring or summer garden because the winter garden experience was a marvel. The place borders on perfection with the climb up the tower being the only downfall of the place I can see. But my (insert chosen deity) you are rewarded when you make it up – that view is one of the best in Sydney. Bravo!
SCORE BREAKDOWN: 3/3 food, 2/2 service, 1/1 drinks, 1/1 venue & ambience, 1/1 cost, 1/1 toilets and 0/1 bonus
East Village Deets:
PH: 0431 622 944
230-232 Palmer Street, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
7 Days: 11am – 12am – but check with venue, not 100% on the times
LOCAL DELIVERY: I doubt it
VEGETARIAN OPTIONS: Yes
GLUTEN FREE OPTIONS: Yes
KID FRIENDLY: Not really
*** JK (and any guests of Spooning Australia) were invited guests of the establishment and/or any PR agencies representing them. However, as always, if it was shite I would happily tell you as such ***