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The Mill House

Channel the Prohibition era and sip moonshine below street level.
By Libby Curran
October 21, 2015
By Libby Curran
October 21, 2015

These days, Flinders Lane has no shortage of wining and dining hot-spots, but newcomer, The Mill House has a personality all its own. A great option for inner-city drinks, a lunchtime bite or a casual dinner, this relaxed bar and eatery boasts sophisticated, modern styling, along with a raft of heritage touches referencing those good old days of Prohibition.

Step down into the bluestone building, and you'll find the subterranean spot surprisingly large, with a big central bar, flanked by a dining space in front and a more moodily-lit area back by the kitchen. Featuring large, circular booths overlooking the DJ, this latter spot is prime real estate: a comfy cave-like space where after-work drinks turn easily into dinner and then a dance session, as furniture is rolled away and tunes are cranked up a few notches.

Here, you can relax with a few wines and craft beers, or really kick it Prohibition-style, delving into the bar's range of moonshine. The line-up's a whimsical nod to those historical elements you'll find around the place, with a variety to suit everyone — knock it back neat, mixed or even in a cocktail.

If you're there to fill your belly, the kitchen's serving up some impressive plates, the menu ranging from share dishes both big and small, to a globally-influenced pizza selection. Innovative plating alludes to the chef's fine dining training, while the South American flavours hint at his heritage.

A beef empanada ($5) is just about as moreish as starters get, stuffed with a perfectly seasoned mince mix, pepped up with chimmichurri and dusted with icing sugar. Tackle this one solo, then follow it up with something more sharable, like the punchy kingfish ceviche ($18.50), cured in that zesty Peruvian marinade known as tiger's milk.

For the main event, it's protein all the way. Think sticky, smoked pork belly, teamed with cous cous and a rich Malbec jus ($24), or a tender chunk of brisket ($25), served alongside herby crushed potatoes and a pool of parsley puree.

All that meat will probably prompt you to order a 2 litre growler bottle of Young Henry's for the table. It's a bit of a novelty, but at $32, proves solid value for craft beer-lovers who've missed out on the $6.50 happy hour pints.

Whether you''e in need of a feed, an interesting tipple or simply an escape from the CBD bustle above, this Flinders Lane hideout is here to help.

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