What do you look for in a beer garden?
Personally, I look for space. Not a lot of space, just enough to squeeze myself in comfortably. If my friends can fit too, well, that’s an added bonus. I joke, but seriously, beer gardens are hot commodities and space is snapped up pretty quick like seagulls flocking to a tossed chip. (Featured image: greatnorthernhotel)
Luckily in Melbourne, it seems we’re getting more and more beer gardens and outdoor spaces to drink up and enjoy the sunshine, which after months inside is desperately needed. These are some of our favourites, some new ones in town, and some more that are popping up for another summer of fun.
1. Whitehart Bar, CBD
If good music selection is high on your list of priorities for when you go out, then Whitehart Bar is definitely one place to check out if you haven’t already. If you have, then you know exactly why it’s on this list. Yes, we also love the luscious greenery, the good food too, and the incredible drinks list. But if we’re being honest, we come for the music whether or not we’re there for after-work drinks, a slow Sunday, or just because the idea popped into our ahead. Keep an eye out on their socials for the weekend line-ups.
Find Whitehart Bar at 22 Whitehart Lane
2. Arbory Afloat, CBD
Moored on the Yarra River, Arbory Afloat has once again been kitted out and decorated to welcome in Melbourne’s spring and summer seasons. This time its theme is the classic Aussie Beach House. Is it technically a beer garden? Maybe, maybe not, but in any case, it’s open-air and there is food and drink served. And this year they’re serving up what they’re calling Beach House Gin thanks to their mates at Four Pillars. That’s a good enough reason for us to make a booking.
Find Arbory Afloat at 2 Flinders Walk, moored beside Flinders Street’s platform 13.
3. The Commons, Melbourne
Years ago we used to come here, and truthfully, it really did set a standard for beer gardens in Melbourne. But back then it went by another name — the Belgian Beer Garden — and whether or not this new name lives up to the original, you’ll have to go and see. With four distinct areas — The Beer Garden, The Kitchen Garden, The Garden Café and The Conservatory — it does feel like this sprawling St Kilda Road oasis will see plenty of people this summer.
Find The Commons at Corner Moubray Street and St Kilda Road
4. Pontoon Park, St Kilda
Courtesy of The Stokehouse Precinct, Pontoon Park is popping up by the much-loved Catani archways in St Kilda’s Catani Gardens, so even though it’s called a park, it’s a park in a garden. What’s not to love? There’s also a pizza menu with five mouth-watering choices (you don’t need more choice) and also four damn-good cocktails that are available in jugs because beer gardens are meant for sharing.
Find Pontoon Park at 30 Jacka Boulevard
5. Great Northern Hotel, Carlton North
As far as great pubs go, this is one of our favs and not because they’ve got tellies to watch all the summer sports action. There’s Parma Day on Monday, Steak Day on Tuesday, Burger Day on Thursday, and Sunday Roast from 12pm every week. There are also 21 beers on tap, which aren’t always the same. Oh, and their beer garden is plenty spacious.
Find The Great Northern at 644 Rathdowne Street
6. Dr Morse Bar And Eatery, Abbotsford
Dr Morse is one funky bar, and their beer garden is the perfect lush surrounds for their Bistro Disco. Pouring independent craft beer, serving up a scrumptious summer bistro menu, and spìnning some sweet tunes, this is another favourite we love to spend time in. This summer, they’ve got even more seating.
Find Dr Morse Bar and Eatery at 274 Johnston Street
7. Pétanque Social, Southbank
Introducing Pétanque Social, Melbourne’s newest outdoor venue in Southbank sporting European flair. Thanks to its location on the Crown Riverwalk, we’ll be getting postcard-perfect views of the city we love and the city we’ve missed for so long. You might even be able to see the Aussie Beach House across the Yarra at Arbory Afloat.
Find Pétanque Social at Crown Riverwalk