Bar, Melbourne

On Tour: Der Raum

Step 1. Hail a taxi and direct him to the corner of Swan and Church St in Richmond♣.

Step 2. Pay the boatman, step the curb and approach the blackened door.

Step 3. Smile at the bartender♥.

Step 4. Take a spin through the menu♦

Step 5. Accept a welcome drink, casually diguised as an amuse bouche.

Step 6. While you finish your drink, select another and order‡

Step 7. Repeat step six, as many times as you can whilst remaining upright.

♣ Be aware that if there is a game on at the Gee, the crawl down Church St will be interminable. If this is the case, best sneak a roady in your pocket. ♥ Do not call him a mixologist. ♦ Don’t try to walk off with it, it has been attached to the bar. ‡ The drinks here, while lovely, can take some time to produce. Best keep one in the chamber at all times.

Well, you’ve waded through my short, but David Foster Wallacesque introduction to Der Raum. I suppose I now owe you an explanation.

Der Raum is a temple to process. Come forth, ye unwashed masses and worship at the altar of method.

Fine, innovative drinks, using techniques that wouldn’t seem out of place on Lost in Space or The Jetsons. The bottle above is a vermouth welcome drink, infused with floraln tastes and smoking with the addition of dry ice, ostensibly used to open the flavours up. While it’s not likely to make it onto my regualr roster of drinks at home, it was a pleasant welcome.

The Blue Moon, below, is a champagne salute to the ‘real’ Aviation. The violet flavor fog carried more taste than I had expected and the visual effect was indeed stunning. The Penicillin, served on an enopurmos sphere of ice and finished with a spray of Laphroaig, amazing. The Smokey Old Bastard, finished with cigar smoke delivered by a machine that wouldn’t have been out of place in a coffee shop on the Keizersgracht, should the Penicillin not deliver enough smoke. The Pharmacy, which i wrote about before, for the show more than anything. All the drinks on the list are incredible.

Der Raum consistently does well in awards and best bar in the world listings. The forest of suspended bottles over the bar is a joy to look at, with hidden treasures, like Tapatio Tequila that don’t come out very often at all, at least in this country. A fantastic bar, just heed my advice on ordering your next when you receive your first.
438 Church St, Richmond VIC 3121, Australia‎ – (03) 9428 0055

On Google Maps here.

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