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Rodney’s bait n tackle
After exploring Freo for new bar sites, Nathan Nisbet and
Scott Kociuruba chose to moor their small bar, Rodney’s
Bait n Tackle, in neighbouring enclave Mosman Park. And
what better way to accentuate a nautical-themed joint
nestled between the river and sea than to build it around
a 30ft boat?
Nathan and Scott rescued the Maeven from
a storm-worn ocean berth a few years ago, and set about
restoring her to her former glory. Built in a Dalkeith
backyard circa 1949, the vessel now serves as an anchor
(sorry) for the relaxed suburban bar, which is entirely fitted
out with repurposed, restored and salvaged material.
“We sourced everything from verge collections –
all the materials, screws, plasters and paint – it’s all
recycled,” Nathan says.
“‘Old’ has a lot more detail, it’s about craftsmanship,”
Scott adds. “Now everything is big, loud and disposable.
Every bar would open and just be like carbon copies of one another – we thought, we’ve got to open a bar for people who
don’t have a million dollars. Just come down and hang out. This won’t become a booze barn.”
As musicians and long-time hospitality workers, the lads have put their combined experiences into the venue, which will
showcase live music as well vinyl classics from the 1930s to the 1970s. “When the best music is from,” Scott says.
Four rotating craft beers are on tap, including local favourite Perth Draught, with another half-dozen bottled beers
and ciders. More than 20 local and imported wines punctuate the list. Bar snacks are also on offer – ideal for sharing –
as well as actual bait and tackle, for anyone inspired to drop a line. A surprising outdoor area will put the wind in your
sails on a sunny day.
598 Stirling Highway, Mosman Park.
Vic Park may have lost That Mexican Place, but it has
gained an American-style bar at the site.
Decanter is a welcome addition to the west end of
the Albany Highway strip, delivering a solid selection
of spirits and generous portions of shareable ‘dude
food’ to satisfy the masses.
Owner and local Craig Wright whipped the place
into shape in just two months – doing much of the work
himself, including light fittings made from old whiskey
decanters – and has been amazed by the response since
opening in September.
“The menu is designed so you can come here,
have a drink and pick at a couple of dishes. People are
loving the jalapeno poppers and the sliders, but the ribs
seem to be the most popular,” says Craig, referring to
the barbecue pork ribs, cooked for eight-hours in the
“I love American food and whiskey; it’s a pretty cool
thing to have along the strip.”
Drinkers can choose from 16 American bourbons/
whiskeys, and other assorted spirits; 14 bottled
beers and four more on tap, and a 26-strong wine
list. Cocktails are well-priced, including a couple of
themed offerings such as the Boston Cream Pie Martini.
279 Albany Highway, Victoria Park.
The ‘burbs often draw the short straw
when it comes to drinking joints. Thankfully,
some savvy folks are filling the gap, with
suburban small bars popping up all around
town. From the tried and tested to brand
spanking new, here’s a few of our faves.
• Bad Apples Ardross
• Budburst Mt Hawthorn
• Hopscotch South Perth
• Juanita’s Subiaco
• Pepper Wine Bar Applecross
• Pirate Bar Mt Hawthorn
• Swallow Maylands
• The Cabin Mt Hawthorn
• Hangout on 20 Preston Como
• The Nic Shenton Park
• The Stanley Wembley
• The Village Bar Subiaco
• Varsity Bar Crawley
Raising the bar
Perth’s bar industry has been
kicking goals on a national
scale of late. The Classroom’s
Andrew Bennett was named
Bartender of the Year at the
Australian Hotels Association’s
national awards in September,
and was a national finalist
in the Bacardi Legacy
Cocktail Competition, for
his creation The Seventh Art.
Local favourite Mechanics
Institute won Best Small Bar
at the prestigious Australian
Bartender Bar Awards, voted
by industry professionals.
Andy Freeman was also
recognised for Outstanding
Contribution, including his
award-winning Varnish on
King, and relative newbie
The Flour Factory.
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