A short stroll down Clarence St, through an unsuspecting doorway next to a guitar shop, you’ll meet a narrow staircase and the comforting smell of cinnamon. Give in to your senses, you’ve just found Grandma’s bar.
Kitsch caboodle, jaffle junkies, cocktail country - Grandma’s is rockin', with tiki style and an abundance of doilies.
While the attitude here is always fun and friendly, the bartenders certainly know their stuff when it comes to the drinks business. They’re masters at reworking the old retro classics in their own style.
“We’ve put our own stamp on the classic ‘Dark & Stormy’, using our house made ginger beer which has a really punchy fresh ginger flavour to it,” says manager Michael.
“For the last decade or so the drinks scene has looked back to early prohibition and even pre-prohibition era for inspiration. I think everyone is just now beginning to revisit the lost 80’s and 90’s era of drinks – now we can look back at some of the more questionable drinks and recreate them with the craft spirits and ingredients we’ve perfected today.”
Michael attributes much of the recent cocktail revival to the craft industry, and to craft gin in particular.
“New distilleries that are trying new methods and flavours and re-injecting old methods into new ways of creation for spirits is very exciting to us, and it’s what keeps us so passionate and interested in the drinks scene.”
While Grandma’s is in fact a rum bar, Michael assures us they have a deep love for gin. And after enjoying their delicious 'Gin-gin Mule' the other week, garnished with a giant piece of sparkly candied ginger, we believe them.