Don’t want to sound like a spoiler, BUT! This is just another hotel bar. It is not a bar like Eau de Vie which has a intimate, sexy feel or Black Bar at The Star where elegance and service is the call of the day or maybe Baxter Inn, York St CBD where they proud to carry the largest whisky selection, or again some of the very classy hotels bars in London and NYC.
But having said all of that it is a smart looking hotel bar – floor staff that are trying hard but not there yet – well stocked shelves and a small number of hard to find whiskies, combined with tasty and good looking bar food.
Now to the real business – WHISKY - I asked one of the waiters about some of my favourite whiskies and if they carry them and I was told that they would get some-one who knew whiskies to come over and have a chat. In minutes he arrived at our table introduced himself and asked if he could have a seat (we loved that personal touch, his name was John ) and inquired about what we were interested in. He was very knowledgeable about whiskies. He then made some suggestions and I got to try this very interesting whisky from Japan, perfect service and we loved that again !
Japan over the years has steadily built up a very strong whisky making tradition. We normally think of Scotland – and that is the true home of some of the best whiskies in the world like – Lagavulin – but Japan is up there now. John recommended three Japanese whiskies – I went for Nikka – this comes from the barrel and tips the scale at 51.4% proof. It’s a Yoichi twice matured blend – the nose is quite sherried – but this whisky is big-boned and bursting with character.
The bar food menu is interesting with some of what you will expect but with some nice surprises. We opted for the fish burger with fries – it was a good fish burger, the bun was superb and the fish had a crunch on the outside with flaky white flesh, lots of flavour. The fries were perfect.
Grain Bar is a newcomer to the Sydney hotel bar scene and a good addition to the Circular Quay bar scene. We liked the whisky and the very knowledgeable barman, John who was cool as – Grain Bar really worth a visit.
Grain Bar at Four Seasons
199 George St Sydney NSW 2000