Unlike the grand accommodations of, say, London's Mayfair, hotel bar drinking isn't something Sydney excels at. Our city's latest attempt, Four Points by Sheraton's Bar Eleven, doesn't quite cut it either. The joint's worth a visit, absolutely, but is a venue somewhat lacking in style compared to most of its CBD competition.
Bar Eleven is the hotel's pop-up rooftop bar and plans to stick around. The place is white, bright and comfortable – think posh Portuguese beach resort in style. It's a great use of space, utilising the 180 degree views of Darling Harbour and beyond, but it's hard to ignore the rest of the hotel piled up on your right.
But hey, to give these guys some credit, it's not all bad. The drinks are basic, but good. Start with a house sparkling (Yarra Valley Domain Chandon $14 glass) or waste no time and jump straight to the Moet ($22 glass). The beers, too, are decent. And keeping in check with the whole basics thing, the Turkish bread dips platter ($12) has nicely toasted fresh bread but the dips are mass produced and nothing special. We recommend you go for the cheese plate ($23) if you need filling up.
And you know what, don't worry too much about Bar Eleven's mediocre food offerings for their cocktail list deserves some credo. Avoiding the sex-on-the-purple-rain-cloud-please-shoot-me-I'm-not-in-Ibiza routine, all cocktails are $19 and will quench some serious alcohol thirst. Try sipping your cocktail through cinnamon-smoked bacon (not as gross as it actually sounds) or go for a chocolate mojito that kills two cravings with one slurp. Forget the Skyfall – blue curacao belongs in the 1970s.
The overall experience of the bar is somewhat lessened by the safety space in between you and the fall to earth. But this is not to say an enjoyable time can't be had. Although Bar Eleven doesn't seem to know what they're trying to be and who they're trying to attract just quite yet, we're positive the place will flourish into something more attractive with time. Watch this space.