PLAYMAKER
The Playmaker
Let's play
PLAYMAKER
  • It's Friday
    What day is it?
  • Now
    What time is it?
  • Anywhere in Melbourne
    Where are you?
  • What do you feel like?
    What do you feel like?
  • And what else?
    And what else?
  • LET'S PLAY
10° & RAINY ON FRIDAY 19 JULY IN MELBOURNE
FOOD & DRINK

The Best (and Cosiest) Bars and Pubs with Fireplaces in Melbourne

Warm up over fireside beers, mugs of mulled wine and cheesy pizzas.
By Tom Clift
July 10, 2019
  shares

The Best (and Cosiest) Bars and Pubs with Fireplaces in Melbourne

Warm up over fireside beers, mugs of mulled wine and cheesy pizzas.
By Tom Clift
July 10, 2019
  shares

THE BEST (AND COSIEST) BARS AND PUBS WITH FIREPLACES IN MELBOURNE

Warm up over fireside beers, mugs of mulled wine and cheesy pizzas.

Nothing counteracts Melbourne's frigid winter weather like drinking a glass of red or a negroni by a roaring open fire. But most pubs — and the Metropolitan Fire Brigade — don't take too kindly to people lighting up their furniture, so you'll have to stick to drinking dens with built-in fireplaces.

These venues will let you fill your belly and defrost your toes by a fire — and help you avoid those pesky arson charges. There's a two-level wine bar, a speakeasy-style small bar, a historic courthouse and converted apothecary, all of which have at least one fireplace for you to settle in next to. Trust us, you'll happily get stuck in to avoid the trek home.

  • 15

    Neptune Food and Wine, as its name might suggest, has a lot of the latter. It also boasts a dedicated cocktail saloon and a ‘fireplace lounge’ down the back. Nab a spot on the leather chesterfield sofa to reap its warmth. If this prime seat is taken, huddle nearby next to the wine wall, or in one or the atrium-style booths. On chilly afternoons we recommend a big ol’ bowl of pasta — at the moment, the list includes spanner crab spaghetti and pine mushroom gnocchi. Pair either with a glass of wine and you have the ultimate winter warmer.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 14

    Once a modest but respectable Italian eatery on Bay Street, Ciao Cielo took things up a notch when it updated its digs last year. The fine diner reopened in Port Melbourne’s historic courthouse, following a $1.5 million makeover to the 1860s building. Its soaring ceilings and heritage features are now offset by New York-style booth seating, striking marble bars and a lovely fireplace.

    Warm up while indulging in woodfired sardines, house-made bolognese ragu tagliatelle and Sardinian-style braised goat leg. Meanwhile, the adjoining bar is dishing up a more casual affair, set within a 150-seat Amalfi-inspired marquee covered in fairy lights.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 13

    Tucked away under Victoria Park Railway Station, the roaring fire in this converted Abbotsford apothecary is the perfect cure for all your winter woes. The Dr Morse takeaway window has a buzzing coffee and breakfast trade with early morning commuters, but the real fun starts later on. Comfy couches and ottomans surround the open fireplace and are the perfect spot to tuck into bar snacks like the fried butter chicken, katsu chip butty or barbecued scallion bread. All of the food and drinks here are sourced sustainably, too, so you can feel good about your nighttime dining options here.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 12

    A regular point-of-call for any true northside denizen, this Sydney Road icon can lay claim to one of the nicest beer gardens in Melbourne. It’s also got a hearty dinner menu, nine different beers on tap, and is arguably one of the best places to catch up-and-coming local bands. Basically, it’s a top-notch spot even without the crackling fire — with it, there’s really no reason to ever leave. And if you ever do need a change of scenery, just head upstairs to the Amelia Shaw Saloon, complete with a fireplace of its own.

    READ MORE
  • 11

    The Post Office Hotel is a well-rounded gastropub experience, complete with a bandroom, large terrariums atop tables and an open fireplace. The dining hall menu is well-priced and tasty, and includes everything from beef short ribs to chicken parmas and hot salami pizzas. Or you can grab a seat in the pub next door, which offers a more humble experience but with the same menu — and, yes, it has a fireplace, too.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 10

    Those winter blues don’t stand a chance in the face of Richmond’s Union House, where you’ve got a choice of three different roaring fireplaces to cosy up beside. Two of these heat the open front bar and are perfectly situated in front of the footy screen, where you can down a few schooies of craft beer and some bar snacks. You’ll find another fireplace in the dining room, where it works a treat alongside the kitchen’s menu of contemporary pub fare. Try the likes of the broccoli, pine nut and parmesan gnocchi, or Wednesday’s long-running steak night special, offering a 250-gram porterhouse matched with chips and pepper sauce for $18.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 9

    Hidden two flights above Section 8 on Tattersalls Lane, Ferydurke is the more laid-back — though still loose — version of its sister venue. The small bar offers regular live music and DJ sets, an impressive cocktail list and relaxed party vibes aplenty.

    The best spot to pull up a chair is in the back corner, where a large wooden fireplace is often ablaze on a winter’s night. Pull up a stool and get stuck in with a mulled wine or a negroni and some snack — like the smoked chilli con carne and jalapeño nachos, or the incredibly cheesy poutine. It’s easy to spend a few hours here with your mates and not once consider moving on.

    READ MORE
  • 8

    CBD cocktail bar Trinket might be best known for its hidden basement den, located through the back of a secret wardrobe. But on a grim Melbourne night, you’ll also find plenty to love at street level. The intimate front bar is decked out with lots of elegant old-world charm and vintage furnishings. Pull up a pew in front of the open fireplace while you get acquainted with the crafty cocktail list, featuring sips like the Dark Lady — a moody blend of beetroot, blackberry, sherry and gin. And, if you’re after a little warmth on your lunch break, Trinket is slinging $12 pizzas from 12–3pm each weekday.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 7

    Any trip to this Fitzroy North gem is nothing but an absolute pleasure, but it’s best when its fireplace is roaring. Neighbourhood Wine is open every night of the week, so any chilly evening is the perfect time to pull up a perch at the bar for a bottle of wine and some snacks. Or, head in on Sundays for the roast lunch — for $40 you will receive a three-course feast. After that, stick around for a game of pool on the massive billiards table, or kick back and listen to whatever vinyl is spinning.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 6

    St Kilda’s Local Taphouse is a Carlisle Street institution and truly a must-visit location for draught lovers — its 19 rotating taps go through more than 400 different beers a year. And it’s no surprise, considering its owners are Stomping Ground Brewing Co’s Steve Jeffares and Guy Greenstone, who are also the creators of the GABS craft beer festival.

    Whatever it’s tapping, there’s no better place to enjoy it than by the outdoor log fire, which warms up the Taphouse’s spacious rooftop beer garden. There’s also a second indoor fireplace downstairs for when the weather turns sour. And, to top it off, an indoor bocce court and plenty of top-notch pub eats are also on the docket at this European-style tavern.

    READ MORE
  • 5

    The Grace Darling has been a staple of Smith Street for a long, long time — built in 1854, it’s apparently the second oldest pub in the city. Regulars will have clocked plenty of hours knocking back drinks in the footpath beer garden out front. But, with the weather the way it is, we’d rather be indoors near one of the two blazing fires. The food is classic pub fare on the fancy side, while the candlelit bar has a dozen local draught on tap. Add to that an atrium restaurant out back plus two separate band rooms, and it’s clear why the Grace is still standing after all this time.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 4

    A mere 50 metres removed from the hustle and bustle of Brunswick Street, The Rainbow Hotel is one of our personal favourites. Its enormous undercover beer garden (complete with pool table) is a great place to while away a lazy afternoon — especially when you’re also eating one of the massive burgers, such as the southern fried chicken or the vegan pulled ‘pork’. If things get too chilly come nightfall, you can toast your outsides by the fireplace, while warming your insides with a choice of 100 different beers. A great live music lineup is just the icing on the cake.

    READ MORE
  • 3

    Sometimes you just want to eat a pizza by the fire under the lights of a disco ball. And at Lazerpig you can do just that. The Collingwood bar serves up some of the best pizza in town, and does it to a very good soundtrack, lots of booze and — if you skip the main dining room and take a seat by the bar — the crackling of a fire. Order The Fun Guy pizza and a spiced negroni, then settle in for the night. It’s the kind of place you’ll want to have a few rounds of each.

    READ MORE BOOK A TABLE
  • 2

    Comfortable, warm and friendly, with plenty of tasty food offerings and a variety of local beers, Tramway is just about the perfect pub to get away from the cold. Soft overhead lighting matches the pleasant glow of the fire as it smoulders quietly in the corner of the room. There’s plenty of craft brews on tap, along with snacking options that include kimchi burgers, burrito bowls and an extra cheesy mac ‘n’ cheese. Weekend brekkie and free live music gigs are also on the docket each week.

    READ MORE
  • 1

    The newly revamped Carringbush Hotel now boasts a hefty central bar, a sprawling tap list of 21 craft beers and eight wines, and a much-celebrated, largely vegan food menu. But the corner pub’s three working fireplaces offer another huge drawcard when those frosty winter temperatures set in. Bunker down and bask in that warm glow, while tucking into meat-free dishes like the maple teriyaki tofu, a creamy porcini pappardelle, or the rich chocolate stout black forest cake drizzled with butterscotch sauce. A daily happy hour also offers $8 pints and wines from 5–7pm, while the monthly trivia night gives an excellent excuse for some midweek fireside action.

    READ MORE

Top image: Trinket

  •   shares
      shares
  • VIEW COMMENTS

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Tap and select Add to Home Screen to access Concrete Playground easily next time. x