An exciting new addition to the Southgate precinct, the Waterslide Bar is located in the precinct’s opening onto the spiral staircase overlooking the Princes Bridge and city skyline.
Waterslide’s Venue Manager Tim Wastell has an impressive resume. Australian Bar Manager of the Year 2009, Wastell has plied his craft at some of Melbourne’s best loved bars such as The Blue Diamond on Queen St and The Saint St Kilda. He comes to Waterslide after a year pursuing excellence at Rockpool Bar and Grill in Perth.
Less than a week old and the bar is already making splashes with its tribute to the colourful area once known as “near Princes Bridge”. Favoured as a circus location and outdoor playground since the 1870s, Princes Bridge was Melbourne’s entertainment hub until well into the 20th century. Just metres from Southgate’s spiral staircase, adventure seekers used to hop into a water chute taller than the skyscrapers of the time. They would then be propelled down a wooden waterslide, fully dressed to the nines!
Various elements from the history of the cocktail were an inspiration in the concept with added contemporary quirky characteristics like, swing seats, lounge nooks, dramatic bottle display, rocking chairs and rotating stools as subtle touch points for customers to draw to.
Tones of gold, dark timbers and deep reddish-purple hues set the scene for the interior, through the use of curtain waves, eccentric banquette seating and reflective metallic mirror finishes.
Wastell has joined forces with Black Pearl’s Fred Siggins to design a fun and accessible cocktail menu and drinks list that incorporates modern techniques, seasonal ingredients and unique flavour combinations, as well as the highest quality spirits and some cracking grower produced wines.
We commenced our evening with a couple of outstanding cocktails.
Our first cocktail of the evening was the Grace Kelly cocktail which was made from Hendrick’s Gin, fresh pressed pear juice, Earl Grey, honey, cinnamon syrup, dehydrated apple garnish. A delicious fruity cocktail with plenty of character, it was an enlivening start.
Our favourite cocktail of the night, the Sage Advice was magnificent. Not one for the faint hearted, the cocktail was a heady combination of Talisker 10yo Scotch Whiskey, Johnny Walker Black Label, Benedictine, apricot & sage syrup and orange bitters.
While Waterslide Bar is dedicated first and foremost to the art of drinking, the bar also offers a laid back environment for catching up with friends and family with Mediterranean inspired food designed to share which goes down a treat with their drink offerings.
Hand harvested Cuca sardines in olive oil and crusted ciabatta bread
Don’t let the “being served from a can” aspect fool you. The sardines were a delight, boasting a wonderful depth of flavour.
Market choice fish carpaccio, Juliann fennel, dill, lemon and olive oil
The fish carpaccio was beautifully presented and tasted even better than it looked. It was a wonderful mélange of different textures, natural sweetness and acidity. The fresh cured slices were embellished with pockets of fennel and dill. The lemon and olive oil dressing added the final touch to an enlivening combination of ingredients.
Mediterranean style pickled and marinated octopus with grated goat feta
The octopus pieces were tender and matched well with the medley of herbs and luxurious feta.
Cuban sandwich Roasted pork, premium shaved ham, melted gruyere cheese, Dijon mustard and pickled cucumber
An extravagant toasted ham and cheese sandwich containing luscious roast pork, gruyere cheese, pickle, mustard and slices of ham which added a nice touch of saltiness to the creamy cheese fusion. The sandwich was the perfect supper treat.
Suntory Yamazaki 18 y.o. Osaka
Our evening at Waterslide concluded on a great high. Overwhelmed by the brilliant choices available, we asked for a Japanese Whiskey recommendation and were presented with the outstanding 18 y.o Suntory Yamazaki. It was a delicate yet profound expression of a Japanese single malt. Smooth, well-balanced with great complexity and a lovely balance of fruit, silky malt and a touch of smoke. Just one of the many examples of the high end offerings available at the Waterslide.
The Waterslide Bar is the answer to your dreams. Finally, a bar that takes its drink choices very seriously, but not itself. With offerings for all enthusiasts (whether you are a craft beer aficionado, cocktail geek, spirit epicurean or wine appreciator there are a range of choices to suit your needs), the bar caters for everyone from those that are out for a fun night with mates to those looking to be inspired.
Location: Shop MR3, Mid Level East, Southgate Avenue, Southbank
Cuisine: Bar, Mediterranean, Cocktails, Wine, Spirits
Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Waterslide Bar.