Now Open: Pleasure Club Is the Hedonistic New Newtown Bar From the Odd Culture Crew

From 4pm to 4am Pleasure Club invites you to indulge in high-concept cocktails and expect the unexpected.
Suz Tucker
February 23, 2024

High-concept cocktails, leather booths and a distinctly horny vibe are the modus operandi at play in Pleasure Club. The new bar-meets-live music venue-slash-performance space has finally opened its doors on Wilson Street in Newtown after almost a year of preparation and the promise (according to Entertainment Manager Sabrina Medcalf) to "blow up the status quo of what your average live music bar is presenting".

So does it deliver?

Well, the drinks list is pretty unreal, for starters. For the venue's launch, Creative Beverage Lead Sam Kirk collaborated with booze whisperer Matt Whiley (of Re) on a cocktail series dubbed 'Nostalgia Machine'. And you very quickly get a sense of the 90s breed of nostalgia they are accessing.

Our pick is the 'Cherry Ripe', an astonishingly accurate rendition of the polarising chocolate bar created with rum, cherry, dark chocolate, Davidson's plum and coconut. The 'Vegemite' is also a highlight, kind of like a dirty martini but... Vegemitey? Other creations on the menu include 'Mr Whippy', 'Cheese TV' and the more palate challenging 'Chicken Parm' made with vodka, comte cheese, bacon, tomato and chicken salt. We liken it to a chilled alcohol-laced chicken soup. Do with that information what you will.

The drinks are accompanied by a simple menu of good hot dogs that pair surprisingly well with the cocktails.

The vibe of Pleasure Club is an anything-can-happen horny hedonism. A glowing purple eye greets you at the street level entrance, hinting at the layers of violet hues contained within. Otherworldly decor and stage design are tone-setters for the entertainment program, which will be a true mixed bag of live music, performance art and audience interaction.

According to Odd Culture Group's Creative Director Nick Zavadszky, "It really will be a different beast depending on the occasion. There will be some heaving and revelrous late nights as well as some pared back, lo-fi shows. We've spent a lot of time engineering the journey from evening into late-night, with cues for transitioning to what we call Dark Service around the 11pm mark. You'll have to experience that one for yourself."

And as of this evening you can.

Pleasure Club is now open from Wednesday to Sunday 4pm-4am at 6 Wilson Street in Newtown. For programming details and more follow the venue on Instagram.

Images by Parker Blain.

Published on February 23, 2024 by Suz Tucker
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