Sometimes, the simple satisfaction of a pub bistro lunch is quite unbeatable, especially when paired with one or two rounds of your favourite bevvies (Coopers, thanks!). Since its recent bistro reno about 6 months ago (and beer garden reno a few years back), one local pub/hotel that we’ve grown to love more and more, has proven to maintain its iconic status as both a reliable watering hole and also a popular destination for locals and passersby to feast on hearty, classic and modern meals that are not only great value but also tastefully tuned and praiseworthy too. I’m talking about the beautiful Golden Barley Hotel, proudly standing on the corner of Edgeware Road and Llewellyn Street in Enmore, NSW.
Sydneysiders are spoilt for choice when it comes to catching up with family and friends, and the local pub/hotel is often many people’s first recommendation. Not only is it an ideal place to catch up for drinks, listen to live music, play pool, or join in the merriment of a trivia or raffle night, etc – most pubs are also a great place to sit down and enjoy a lovely meal. Wherever you’re living in Sydney (or any city or town in Australia for that matter), your local pub/hotel – often the hub for social activity/bonding, is usually not too far away.
The Golden Barley Hotel, aka The Barley first opened as it now stands in August 1939. It lies on the land of the Cadigal people, at the head of what was once the Gumbramorra Swamp. It is a gorgeous example of Art Deco architecture and many original features still exists throughout the hotel. 1 The dear lady, now in her 70s – still stands strong and proud, and has never looked better, as she maintains her original beauty and charm with some slight yet beneficial internal reno.
Along with the mainbar at the front (where most/all of the local favourite beers are on tap), and a lush green beer garden secluded at the back, The Barley is also home to a modern/hip looking bistro with an equally appealing menu to match. In its previous incarnation, the bistro was a lifesaving Asian/Australian eatery that served satisfying quick and affordable meals, including amazing curry laksas and other classic pub favourites.
Now, after its recent reno (and what a wonderful makeover it is), the place has transformed into an cool bistro/dining room dressed with a collection of tables/communal benches, arty finishings/details and moody lighting/atmosphere. The bistro menu includes a selection of chic and classic pub/bistro/cafe style dishes, as well as daily lunch/dinner specials – which is what we ordered on our last week’s visit to The Barley, and found out is hard to beat.
For our around noon lunch, we ordered the lamb and vegetable stew, spaghetti marinara and creamy pesto penne – all from the $10 weekly lunch special. Also, seeing that we were in a pub, albeit earlier than necessary, we thought it was befitting to complement our meal with a customary schooner of Coopers Pale Ale and glass of the house Shiraz (which quickly/easily turned to two), which paired with our meal just perfectly!
Overall, we were very impressed with our lunch – the quality, taste and serve size of all of the dishes that we had ordered exceeded our expectations, especially considering the great price. All of the dishes looked and tasted freshly prepared and the flavours were all spot on, with neither overpowering elements nor weaknesses – and not because of the drinks, mind you. We chose a table by the window which granted us the most wonderful speckled/shadowed natural early afternoon lighting effect on the food photos taken.
We’ll be back to The Barley bistro for sure – to try other dishes on the lunch special, and other dishes from the blackboard menu too, including the Kingfish ceviche on crostini toast, and wild rice salad, which also had caught my eye. By the way, we were informed by the lovely waitstaff that the bistro also has daily dinner specials too, including their famous roasts nights.
So there you go – don’t underestimate the value of your local pub/hotel. Not only are they a great place to catch up with family and friends for drinks, a game of pool or to win a meat tray, they’re also the perfect place to dine on some very good grub, as The Barley exemplifies.
- Affordable delicious varied pub/bistro meals
- Daily lunch and dinner specials
- Beer garden
- Pub drinks and atmosphere
- Recently renovated interior – cool/comfy furniture/decor in the bistro
- Super friendly and efficient staff
Affordable, delicious meals, relaxed/friendly pub atmosphere, daily lunch/dinner specials, beer garden.
Did you know?
- There’s a total of about 6,033 hotels, pubs & bars in Australia, 2,052 in NSW, and 164 in Sydney. 2
Golden Barley Hotel
Address: 165-169 Edgeware Road, Enmore, NSW, 2042
(Cnr Edgeware Road & Llewellyn Street)
Phone: (02) 9565 1166
Bistro Open Hours:
Monday: 5pm – 9:30pm
Tuesday-Friday: Midday – 3pm/5pm – 9:30pm
Saturday: Midday – 3pm/4pm – 9:30pm
Sunday & Pubic Holidays: Midday – 3pm/4pm – 9pm