Six bars that offer more than just a drink

Pink Moon Saloon

The name comes from a dreamy Nick Drake album. The space channels the spirit of a log-cabin hideaway, occupying a narrow site just off city-central Leigh St. Up front is the “drinkers’ hut”, which features the very best of South Australia’s grape and grain offerings. The hut opens out to a courtyard that lets sunlight wash over the covered drinking area and a rear section that offers a secluded spot to enjoy a glass of Barossa Valley red and a meaty treat from the wood-fired oven.

21 Leigh St, city,
Friday noon–2am;
Saturday 4pm–2am
Sunday-Thursday noon-midnight,


Just landed in Adelaide? Spend your first evening overlooking the shimmering city lights. Prime position is an outdoor booth, where heaters and rugs allow you to stay snug as you take in the dramatic panorama over Adelaide’s cultural icons: North Tce, the Festival Centre, the parklands and Adelaide Oval. Graze on small plates and quaff the eponymously named 2KW cocktail (gin, peach liquor, spiced honey apple syrup, lemon, pear juice and egg white in a martini glass).

Level 8, 2 King William St, city, 8212 5511,
Monday-Friday 10am-late;
Saturday-Sunday noon-late,

Maybe Mae

A secret door (disguised as wood panelling) guards the entrance to this chic subterranean speak-easy. The vibe here is hipster with a twist – what New Yorkers call “haute hipster” – with green leather banquettes arranged in booths, mirrored walls for furtive glances, and a horseshoe bar that serves up liquid perfection such as signature cocktail the Mae Tai or the champagne-infused Ruby Lu. Opulent but cosy, it’s a place you’ll keep coming back to.

15 Peel St, city,
Monday-Friday: 5pm-2am
Saturday-Sunday: 6pm-2pm,


55ml gets the vibe just right – a small bar that’s big on welcoming smiles and friendly banter. London-based architect Yuujin Hotta designed the space, which occupies the site of an abandoned fish factory. During the day it’s toasties, sarnies or burgers and Dawn Patrol coffee, while at night a DJ spins vinyl and attention turns to the taps dispensing warming stouts, a chocolate porter and dark ales.

Open 8.30am-late,
seven days, Mill St, city,

The Barlow Room

This truly is the bar that only the locals know about. Hidden behind a fireplace in the Lindes Lane winebar, The Barlow Room is Adelaide’s best-kept secret. A push on the fireplace sees it open up. Head downstairs and you enter a dimly lit basement lounge with its own exclusive bar and piano in the corner. Look out for special accoustic music nights, when this quirky, intimate venue takes on a jazz bar ambience.

Tuesday-Wednesday 11am-8pm
Thursday 11am-10pm,
Friday-Saturday 11am -1am,
Lindes Ln, city,

Clever Little Tailor

Clever Little Tailor helped to kick-start the laneway bar movement in this city, and despite the competition it spawned, it remains an inner-city favourite. The loading dock-turned-designer bar offers an ever-changing range of rare ales and pilsners, an unsurpassed selection of spirits and cocktails served with knowledge and skill by aproned staff. Sink into one of the tan leather booths on the mezzanine level, where chatting with friends and making new ones is easy.

4pm-late, seven days,
19 Peel St, city, 0407 111 857,