People of Brisbane, meet your new favourite dive bar: Sonny's House of Blues. Most places earn their 'House' name after years of dimly lit dinginess, but this new joint's skipping the history. Sonny’s hails back to the types of places common in Los Angeles, and with good reason — it was in LA that owner Jamie Webb came up with the idea. Webb made up with a story to go with the venue, claiming that legendary American bluesman Sonny Terry used to own a blues bar, but his son turned it into a rock joint after he died. The namesake is real, but the rest is pure fiction.
The description might be a little harsh; however Sonny’s owns its vibe of '80s rock 'n' roll in everything from its live music line-up to its booth seating. Located down in the inner-city depths of Rowes Lane in the space that Rosie’s once called home, this isn’t quite the grungy hole-in-the-wall you might expect — but with retro décor and a buzzing atmosphere, it is definitely the next best thing. Think sleaze without the actual sleaze.
The Mexican-themed menu brings tasty treats to this laidback establishment, including tacos, burritos and quesadillas served for lunch and dinner. Drinks-wise, expect tequila, bourbon and coke slushies, frozen margaritas, '80s-named cocktails, and more than 40 kinds of craft beer.
The American speakeasy-style hangout is the latest in a long line of bars and music venues opening around the city, with new joints seeming to pop up every week. That Brisbanites have Webb to thank for the new CBD haunt is hardly surprising, given that he owns Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall, Gordita, Peasant and the also-new Los Villanos as well.