What better way to start a food blog than to write about… well, bars. I’m sitting here at my desk listening to some classic Bill Withers soul and thinking about how good it would be to sit back in a moody-lit, alleyway pub where I can actually chill and relax while enjoying a good bit of tipple, some well-crafted bar snacks and great, ecclectic music. Well, they’re a rarity here, but there is one place I’m crazy about at the moment, and that’s Madame Fling Flong in Newtown. It’s got cool retro couches, a relaxed local vibe, great cocktails, classic movies on Tuesday nights and the best churros and chocolate in town (as far as I’ve seen). And you don’t even know it’s on King Street until you enter the questionable restaurant and head upstairs towards what looks like a one-way trip to the loo.
Now don’t tell all your friends or we’ll all be crammed into a single joint, breathing each other’s armpits. Instead. we need more places like it, so make sure to tell your local politician that you’re gonna be extremely peeved if Labor and the Liberals kill Clover Moore’s plans to loosen the licensing laws – only because the big hotel pubs can bribe them with wheelbarrow-loads of revenue from the pokies and bribes from the the liquor lords to stock their mediocre, mass-produced swill.
Of course, if you’re more of an armchair activist, you can get on Facebook and join the We want funky little pubs in Sydney group or the Sydney Hole in the Wall (Bar) Appreciation Society. That’ll at least give us a common place to gripe.
And I have to admit that I’ve thought of more extreme measures, especially the idea of boycotting all hotels that have pokies in them and are members of the new Dark Side, aka the Australian Hotels Association. But of course, that could be the end of my social life in Sydney, and there’s only so many times you can go to Tatler.
With that in mind, I’m going to finally leave the office, at a very wrong 9.30pm, and go to the one place I know I can always get a great wine by the glass, hear good eclectic (if sometimes questionable) music and be able to chill in an old couch and have a decent conversation, without a pokie in sight. I’m going home.