Coogee Pavilion Rooftop
169 Dolphin Street, Coogee NSW
(02) 9240 3000
The long-awaited rooftop at Coogee Pavilion has finally retracted its walls, offering locals and out-of-towners another spot to position themselves for a sun-drenched afternoon of delectable drinks and fabulous fare.
Occupying the top of a building that used to house an indoor swimming pool, an aquarium, a roller-skating rink and a herd of 14 donkeys amongst other things, the Pavilion’s newest incarnation is the brainchild of Merivale head honcho, Justin Hemmes. Having already opened the ground floor to the public in 2014, he headed to the clouds, creating a local paradise where everyone can enjoy Mediterranean-inspired fare and a 270-degree view of the Coogee shoreline.
The space’s design is based on a fictional character dreamt up by Hemmes and his design team: an eccentric botanist whose conservatory has been uncovered. Therefore there’s an emphasis on wicker furniture, loads of greenery – both inside and out – and a blue and white colour scheme.
Choose a spot and settle in – you won’t be leaving any time soon. There are three bars to order from, so choose wisely. Start with a beer on tap, including Little Creatures Bright Ale or James Squires 150 Lashes Pale Ale, or opt for a glass of bubbles, including Chandon from the Yarra Valley. Embrace the summer weather with a beachside cocktail such as the Coogee Breeze – a bright combination of belvedere, fresh pressed pink grapefruit and pomegranate juice, or the Pavilion Pina Colada featuring Havana Club 7, pineapple and coconut. If you’ve brought friends along for the ride, share a Pavilion Pimms Cup, perfect for sunny afternoons.
Executive Chef, Jordan Taft, and Head Chef, Zac Sykes, are in charge of the snacks and dishes cooked over charcoal. Start with the pita chips and hummus, blistered sweet peppers with fragrant salt and smoked garlic toum, and charred chicken wings with red chicken spice and yoghurt pickle-sauce.
Move onto the grill plates, perfect for pairing with a range of accompaniments and Lebanese bread. Try the grilled halloumi in vine leaves with lemon, before tasting the charred octopus with harissa powder and burnt orange. Lamb lovers will devour the rump skewers with green za’atar and crisp thyme, while vegetarians will be salivating over the kefta cheese meatballs with lemon tahini.
For the complete dining experience, pair your charcoal dishes with a few sides, including farmer cheese with red onion and fresh oregano, smoked eggplant with olive oil, garlic and lemon, and hummus with pine nuts and cumin.
With such fantastic food on offer, coupled with a low-tech but high-impact drinks list, Coogee’s newest rooftop bar is delivering in spades, taking full advantage of its prestigious location to create one of summer’s best drinking and dining destinations.