Sydney's Best Small Bars


Small Bars: Surry Hills - Darlinghurst
The Surry Hills-Darlinghurst area is small bar central. From the tiny to the sublime, here you will find what you searching for: good nights, great choices. These 30+ small bars will help get you started.

  • Absinthe Salon
    An art-deco shrine that is dedicated to chasing the green fairy, aka drinking absinthe: 9/10

  • Bitter Phew
    With its emphasis on craft beers, it's more like a small pub than a small bar.

  • Big Poppa's
    Food, darkness, hip-hop. They are the first things that will enter you mind as you head into this late night venue. 7/10.

  • Butter
    Shoes, chicken and slushies - possibly the strangest combination for a Sydney small bar yet: 6/10

  • Button Bar
    One of the few Sydney bars that has managed to find balance between contemporary and heritage designs: 7/10

  • Cafe Lounge
    A leader in creating more experimental d├ęcor with a cool atmosphere and great vibe: 7/10

  • Ching-a-lings
    The quintessential inner-city small bar decked out with basic brick, dim lighting, random art and graffitied toilets: 7/10

  • Darlie Laundromatic
    Stepping inside this Surry Hills bar just somehow makes you want to smile: 7/10

  • Della Hyde
    There is no going past the fact this place has an intimate, low-key feel with the bonus of attentive staff and a good selection of food and cocktail options: 8/10

  • Eau De Vie
    If you are looking to escape the typical Kings Cross experience of seedy bars, inconsistent door policies and drunken youngsters, Eau de Vie is your saviour: 8/10

  • Love, Tilly Devine
    The first time you visit Love, Tilly Devine you'll find probably find yourself saying 'wow' or 'cool'. This wine bar is both: 7/10

  • Low 302
    An example of a small bar that does everything right: 9/10

  • Mr Fox
    At night, the dark interior and soft lighting are enticing with music at an unobtrusive level: 6/10

  • Play Bar
    The theme in this basement bar is music - mostly on vinyl. Each night sees a different event including local muso's playing live: 6/10

  • Pocket Bar
    One of the first small bars in Sydney, still going strong: 8/10

  • Rosie Campbell's
    A Jamaican-themed venue that feels more like a backpacker bar, but still manages to feature a decent cocktail list and food that packs a flavoursome kick: 6/10

  • Shady Pines Saloon
    The epitome of the small bar scene in Sydney, it will surprise and delight you: 9/10

  • Tatler
    The elegance and sophistication of this bar is not immediately obvious when entering the bar's battered grilled door. Descend the stairs, admire the fitout, then the cocktails: 7/10

  • The Golden Age
    Of the new small bars in Sydney, few can match the pedigree of this small bar which features a working cinema dating back to the 1940s: 6/10

  • The Flinders
    Yes it's back. After shuttering its doors for two years, The Flinders re-emerged at the very end of 2016 sporting a revamped look and 3am close: 8/10

  • The Long Goodbye
    A welcomed step away from zany themes to reveal a more sophisticated and fun bar, without the need for pretentiousness: 9/10

  • The Owl House
    Compact, intimate and you'll be made to feel like it's your local - even if you have travelled across Sydney to get there: 7/10

  • The Oxford Circus
    Sad news for fans of Oxford Circus...

  • The Wanderer
    Small, narrow and busy, this is the place to grab an easy drink: 6/10

  • The Wild Rover
    Rustic touches and an adventurous cocktail menu are perfectly executed in this subtlety themed Irish bar: 7/10

  • This Must Be The Place
    Quality ingredients, talented staff and a Scandinavian-inspired design are let down by an atmosphere lacking vibe: 6/10

  • Tio's Cerveceria
    A tequila bar that has a more raucous feel rather than a cool vibe: 6/10

  • Tokyo Bird
    It's all things Japanese at Tokyo Bird from the food to whisky, beer and service: 8/10

  • Vasco
    This rock and roll bar is loud, in your face and an alternative to the more serene small bars in nearby Surry Hills: 5/10

  • Wine Library
    Part restaurant, part wine bar with friendly, breezy service: 7/10

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