Cantonese pub

Two central-west pubs have had a facelift to restore them to their former glory

The Sydney pub scene is constantly on the move – old boozers and new gastropubs are constantly changing hands. And sometimes when these pubs have new owners, they also have new makeovers. Two of these pubs recently reopened in the Midwest West – General Gordon in Sydenham and Illinois in Five Dock. Here’s what to expect.

General Gordon, Sydenham
It’s hard to miss General Gordon – it has stood above Sydenham Station since the 1930s and, until recently, was embarked due to a fire in 2018. But now it is again open – with its front and rear bars charred by flames. The refreshed pub has a courtyard with lots of lush greenery, a cozy bistro, and a wood-lined sports bar with historical memorabilia dotted on its walls.

“We are the definition of a versatile pub,” says Sarah Lewis, Licensee. Broadsheet. “Whether it’s meeting up with friends in the sports bar to watch football, meeting family for lunch, having a cocktail in the back or having a cold one with your four-legged friend, we have something for you. everybody.”

New chef Kirsten Baker (ex-Vic on the Park) has put together a menu of pub classics with Mediterranean touches. A wood-fired oven serves pizzas – including a beetroot-based vegan option – as well as half a roast chicken, 12-hour prime rib, and wood-roasted pumpkin. There are also more traditional pub fare such as chicken cutlets and parmies, and salt and pepper squid.

Although the building itself is old, the drinks menu is quite modern. There are 14 beers (“You can go either way,” Lewis says. “Sours and seltzers on the one hand and [Tooheys] New and Guinness on the other. ») And two wines on tap, as well as cocktail pitchers. His bottle shop sells Australian wine – including vegan, biodynamic, and minimal intervention drops.

“At The General Gordon, we all want to welcome the community into our home. It remains a place to feel welcome, safe and unpretentious. ”

General Gordon
20 Swain Street, Sydenham
(02) 9557 1322

Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 3 a.m.
Sun 10 am-10pm

Illinois Hotel, Five Dock
Until recently, the Illinois Five Dock Hotel was a tired old boozer and a “gentlemen’s club” on Parramatta Road. But its new owner – former Wallabies player Bill Young, who also owns Friend in Hand of Glebe and Hotel Concord, among others – gave it a Palm Springs-inspired refresh. It now has benches and a sunny astroturf court, and its original terrazzo floor has been found under the worn carpet.

It also has a Fat Belly Jack’s food truck – run by the team behind the Nameless Bar (formerly Down’n’Out) – which serves Nashville-style fried chicken, mashed beef burgers, and ‘trash’ fries. (fries topped with cheese sauce and gravy).

“Whoever takes [US burger chain] In-N-Out Burger and Survives is worth knowing I think, ”Young says Broadsheet. “The choice would be the fried chicken burger with the really hot sauce – it will melt your face.”

Drinks remain classic, with 23 taps including Tooheys New, Heineken, Little Creatures and James Squire. Also on tap: Margaritas and Espresso Martinis.

There’s a flamingo motif running across the room – a nod to the Las Vegas Flamingo Hilton from the ’70s – with brass flamingos embedded in the floor, flamingo-shaped neon signs in the outside, a flamingo at the entrance and the Pink Flamingo cocktail, a colorful cocktail concoction of vodka, cranberry juice, bubble gum syrup and fresh lime.

Illinois Hotel
15 Parramatta Road, Five Pier
(02) 9797 9550

Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 3 a.m.
Sun 10:00 a.m. to midnight

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