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Yarra Botanica Is Melbourne's Lush New Pontoon Bar and Eatery Docking in March

The floating venue will make its home at Southbank this spring, brimming with plant life and slinging an all-Victorian drinks offering.
By Libby Curran
January 21, 2022
By Libby Curran
January 21, 2022

We might not have a harbour like our mates up north, but we do have a Yarra River dotted with its fair share of breezy riverside venues. And that collection of waterfront haunts is about to get a little bigger, when new pontoon bar and eatery Yarra Botanica opens its doors in March.

Yes folks, Melbourne's set to score another floating bar — and we don't even have to wait until the start of another summer to enjoy it. The work of Australian Venue Co (Fargo & Co, State of Grace, Kewpie, College Lawn Hotel), Yarra Botanica will make its home at Southbank from early spring, delivering a year-round, all-weather food and drink destination where Victorian produce reigns supreme.

Sandridge Bridge, Dietmar Rabich via Wikimedia Commons

As the name suggests, the two-level venue is working to a strong botanical theme, lush with native plants and Indigenous aquatic vegetation, and consciously designed to have minimal impact on the surrounding environment. Onboard, you'll find planter boxes, climbing vines, herb gardens and plenty of edible plants destined for the drinks menu.

What's more, only Victorian drops will appear on that list of libations, with the bar committed to pouring exclusively homegrown sips in strong support of the Drinks Victoria program. The extensive lineup is set to showcase plenty of gin — garnished with botanicals from the onsite herb gardens, if you fancy — along with a hefty spread of cocktails, beer, wine and spirits.

The matching food offering will feature mostly Victorian produce, with the seasonal menu running to pub-style snacks, share plates and wood-fired pizzas. Expect a focus on fresh local seafood, too.

The space itself is a multifaceted one, decked out with group-friendly booths, day beds and sprawling market umbrellas, with an array of comfy spots for kicking back to enjoy the waterfront views. And as for the entertainment, there's a whole stack of goodies to come, including DJs, live tunes and boozy brunch sessions.

Yarra Botanica will launch on the river at Sandridge Bridge, Southbank, from March 16. We'll share more details as they drop.

Top Image: A render of Yarra Botanica

Published on January 21, 2022 by Libby Curran

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