Manly’s Hotel Steyne navigates a new course with Moonshine Bar
With Sydney’s small bar revolution underway it’s easy to be distracted from the big players that were once figureheads on the Sydney pub scene. Huge, multi-level pubs like Manly’s Hotel Steyne had grown to a point where a personal touch seemed all but forgotten amongst local crowds and rumbles closing hour.
However at the end of 2011 the Steyne unveiled a multi-million dollar makeover, with top floor, pirate-inspired, Moonshine Bar at the helm. Here, attentive staff and live music bring back the community feel of a local pub. If it’s beer you’re after, best to head back downstairs to the Round Bar where there are 66 beers on tap. At Moonshine, it’s all about cider and rum – the bar is stocked with 16 ciders on tap and over 100 rums.
Moonshine is a weekender bar – open only Thursday through Sunday. Rope coils, nautical lamps and stacked wooden cider chests add to the pirate ship feel. Raised bench seats will have you swinging your legs like a kid in a make-believe boat. The cider menu, one of the most extensive in Sydney is a fermented orchard of options – from Apple Hills to Gypsy Pear and strawberry and apple Cheeky Rascal ciders. Add a shot of rum to any of those ciders and you’ll soon have a swagger the envy of Jack Sparrow. The cider bar menu orginated from the publican Ged Dore, who married an Irish girl, and has since become familiar with the explosion of cider in Europe, most notably in celtic countries.
The outside terrace, overlooking the iconic pine trees of Manly’s beach front promenade, has a gangway of tiered seating – perfect for watching the sunset or the passing parade.