The Baxter Inn was a really cool speakeasy located in the CBD in Sydney. I found it on the 2nd day of my travels. It was on my list even before I got to Sydney. I knew it was going to be awesome. I had read about it and it exceeded my expectations. It isn't easy to locate. A buddy tried to meet me there but gave up after forty minutes. It required a bit of investigating. After walking by the address at least 5 or 6 times and looking quite puzzled, I finally walked into a bike store and was led to the velvet rope. This of course, is out the back door of the shop or down the alley, along the side of the storefront.
Upon entry, I realized why its been labeled “best American Bar.” The room was amazing. Whiskey was the standout spirit of the house. The selection was almost overwhelming and varied in price point. I noticed a menu of classic and original cocktails. I couldn’t help myself; I had to order a Manhattan.
It was my first proper drink on vacation and it held up. The barkeeps looked serious in their dress shirts and accompanying ties. It was very reminiscent of the barkeeps in the states. Damien wasn’t there to make my first drink but we managed to start chatting once his shift had begun. We talked about his recent trip to the US, all his travel tales, whiskey and rum. He then took care of me from then on. I managed another cocktail, the Zhivago.
This one had Rye, Galliano, lime, sugar and apple. I bit lighter and at the time, necessary, as I had to start saving room for later. Still, the drink was very balanced. Damien and I did a shot together. It was my first taste of Havana Club from Cuba. We did shots of the 7 year aged Havana when I came back too. These were my farewell shots. I began and ended my cocktail journey in that glorious room. Some call it the best looking bar in Sydney. I took the quite the tour, thanks to Damien. I made some great mates. The Baxter Inn had that charm, that feeling of timelessness. Most of all, the folks behind the bar make you feel warm and welcome. It is one of the many things that standout about Sydney.