Friday, 20 July 2012

Rooftop Bar and Melbourne Aquarium (Thursday Hedonism Part I)

What started off as a quick lunchtime excursion to the Melbourne Aquarium turned quickly turned into a wild and wanton day where I accumulated so much intelligence on both places I have frequented in the past but also new venues that can easily turn into favourites. I am looking forward to detailing these experiences and posting them over the next three days.

The latter part of the afternoon turned into a relaxing session at the Rooftop Bar which is located at 252 Swanson Street, Melbourne inside the formidable Curtin House. A dodgy old lift is prepared to take you to the sixth floor slowly and when you emerge onto the rooftop after climbing an additional set of stairs I immediately wondered why I hadn't been here before.

Some pints of beer and cider were ordered and it was quickly served in plastic pint glasses. The lady behind the bar had attitude, but the good kind of an attitude that you would expect in a trendy yet relaxed setting. Hipsters languished at the various tables and I overheard one speaking about bogans that have deviant sex lives whilst rolling cigarettes. They seemed harmless enough. Portable heaters adorned the area and I happily took up a perch next to one and as the minutes turned into hours I found myself getting closer and closer to the warming device.

They have a lunchtime menu and were promoting a $12 burger that has two patties. I believe for $15 you can purchase one with chips. After having a quick lunch at the Meat and Wine Co in Southbank earlier, I wasn't hungry but I am intrigued by their menu and I will be returning to sample it and of course enjoy some beer, the sun if it is out and the always interesting Melbourne skyline.

This is the first part of a three part post. The second part can be found here. The third part here.

Rooftop Bar
Link to review
Level 7/252 Swanston St Melbourne VIC 3000
(03) 9654 5394
no web site
My Rating: 14.5/20
Service: 3/5
Ambiance: 4/5
Quality: 3.5/5
Value For Money: 4/5
Comment: Relaxed and great view

Twitter: @epicurean3006
e-mail: epicureanofsouthbank (at) gmail (dot) com

At the time of this writing, 94% of the reviewers on Urbanspoon liked this place. I can understand why and fully agree.

Rooftop Bar on Urbanspoon

Rooftop Bar
View from the Rooftop bar, taken with my Android phone as the sun sets.

Before making the journey to the Rooftop bar, and even before lunch, I spent a couple of hours at the Melbourne Aquarium. Not only did I have a "buy one get one free" entry coupon in my Entertainment Book, but I was keen to visit and see the penguin exhibit. I had not been to the Aquarium in a decade since I first visited Melbourne as an adult with my mate Andrew and I was also keen to see how it changed.

The penguin exhibit is amazing. I could spend hours just looking at the King Penguins waddling around and observing how they socialise with one another. There is both an enclosure that is filled with snow and some rocks that the King penguins seem to like and another area where there is water that the Gentoo penguins fancy to swim in. Both of the areas are connected and when they walk down the hill from one section to another, frequently they will take a bit of a tumble and slide down it which reminded me of the first time that I snowboarded as a teenager. The penguins certainly were not stressed and when I left the exhibit, neither was I.

Melbourne Aquarium King Penguins
King Penguins at Melbourne Aquarium. Photo taken with my Android phone. This is a must-do experience before eating or drinking in the area.