First Impressions: Henry Deane, Hotel Palisade – Millers Point (Sydney)

Millers Point is not often found on one’s list of essential cocktails bars in Sydney, with little reason for bar-lovers to walk all the way up Argyle Street beyond The Rocks side. That has all changed recently, with historic pub Hotel Palisade reopening after an extensive re-work in its 100th year. Since July of this year, the venue has been enjoying a new lease on life, re-introducing (or introducing) Sydneysiders and visitors to it’s stunning location. This month saw the venue take it’s next big step, by opening up the top levels of the building, revealing a stunning split-level cocktail bar and eatery that, unsurprisingly, now offers one of the best views in Sydney.

Hotel Palisade - Henry Deane [Belinda Rolland]
Photo credit: Belinda Rolland

Named Henry Deane for the Australian engineer who first electrified Sydney’s tramway system and helped build the venue, Hotel Palisade’s crown is a luxurious rooftop bar with large glass double-hung windows that offer a 360 degree view of Sydney’s Harbour and skyline, industrial furnishings, and a strong focus on marble. It’s right next to Barrangaroo, so unlocks a similar perspective of the city to the recently opened Barrangaroo Reserve.

Photo credit: Belinda Rolland

Hotel Palisade - 1 [Belinda Rolland]
Photo credit: Belinda Rolland

Though, aesthetic is far from the only impressive aspect of this bar; the food menu has been designed by Joel Bennetts, with Matt Fitzgerald curating the list of cocktails, beers and wines on offer; both mirror the aura of sophistication that glistens on both levels of Henry Deane.

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Settling onto one of the pink-leather sofas with some skewered Chargrilled Prawns while sipping on a Bob’s Biscuit cocktail of Chivas Regal, house-blended vermouth, shortbread, and Dom Bénédictine, is a reality here and the flavours are just as striking as that million dollar view.

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Those after something a bit breezier should scoop up the Coconut & Pandan Daiquiri with Havana Club, salted sugar, and fresh lime. One of these sightly concoctions is best had with a Cauliflower & Asparagus Risotto.

The bar staff are pretty handy with their classics as well. The Henry Deane’s Negroni leans towards the sweeter side but the ice sphere is filled with it’s own flavouring so the taste very slowly changes the longer you take to finish. This pairs particularly well with a Lobster Roll of fresh lobster meat, spicy mayo, and iceberg lettuce, again bringing in that charming flavour combination that captures the impressive vista.

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The pure spectacle of Henry Deane is built with good food, good drink, and remarkable, detailed design by Sibella Court. We have a feeling that this spot is going to be one of the most sought-after not only for New Year’s Eve, but pretty much any occasion which requires a reminder of just why Sydney is considered such an unrivaled beauty. There’s enough spacious seating areas to justify booking ahead, and reservations made at least 48 hours in advance have the option of ordering a bespoke Chilled Seafood Tower.

The next step for Hotel Palisade will include nine boutique hotel rooms atop the pub and below Henry Deane, all opening on December 1st and each named after an Anzac.

Henry Deane, Hotel Palisade

Address: 35 Bettington St, Millers Point 2000
Contact: (02) 9018 0123; [email protected]
Opening Hours: Tue 5pm–11pm; Wed to Sun 12pm–midnight

Lead image provided and credited to Belinda Rolland


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Chris Singh

Chris Singh is an Editor-At-Large at the AU review, loves writing about travel and hospitality, and is partial to a perfectly textured octopus. You can reach him on Instagram: @chrisdsingh.