Watching Underbelly, you’d be forgiven for walking through the Cross, eyes wide with intrigue at the hookers and smack addicts, placing hefty back story’s on the characters that fill the streets and wondering which of the younger doormen is thinking about making a move and becoming the next King of the Cross. The media seems to want this myth of the Cross to be perpetuated, with stories talking about the back alley underhand dealings that go on.
Don’t be seduced too much by this story though, you’ll miss an importnat change that’s going on. The cross is moving up market, gentrifying if you will. LL, just down Llankelly Place, is a little gem that represents the forefront of this coming small bar revolution.
Tucked down an alley that very recently was not the safest route to walk home at night, at an address famous for peddling smut and illegal gambling, LL is setting the bar for new entrants, bringing a little of Dragon-i in Hong Kong south for the winter. The docr inside features a couple of little gems from the past, and I’ve heard rumours of a slightly more crazy room out the back as well.
The cocktail list nods to a Bacardi deal, with Bombay & 42 featuring heavily. The Dragon Eye, made birds eye chili infused 42 is an on the rocks standout. Probably not a bar for a night long romp through the classics, but the Negroni was turned out well.
The food is worth more than one visit, the soft shell crab a must. Dumplings, Beef Fillet and the Fried Tofu were also great.
I’m stoked that this change has come to the hood. LL is a comfortable, friendly joint where you can chat to the owners while you’re waiting for your companions to arrive. Top marks for providing a relaxed and fun service too.
On Google Maps here.