Mr Henderson bar, a cool Sandgate drinking hole, inhabits an old cobbler’s shop in the main shopping precinct near the picturesque town square.
Taking its name from Bob Henderson, the bootmaker who plied his trade in the historic brick-walled premises from the 1920s to the 1970s, Mr Henderson also pays tribute to him with stencil art on a wall, and relics of the trade like handmade toolboxes and shoe anvils found scattered around the ambient bar.
Patrons can sit in the cosy ambient interior with its exposed brick feature wall, or out back is a small courtyard beer garden strung with fairy lights, where on weekends food trucks like The Bun Mobile park in the laneway and feed hungry drinkers.
For Mr Henderson, while offering a small tasty snack menu, has a policy of BYO food so patrons can get takeaway from nearby businesses such as Il Forno Pizzeria and bring it in to the bar.
The beer menu at Mr Henderson’s is one of the best around, with seven beers, including Fortitude Pacer, Sapporo and Erdinger Weissbier on tap and an impressive range of Australian craft and international beers available by the bottle.
In addition to a couple of beers from Green Beacon, there’s Young Henry’s Newtowner from Sydney a smattering of South Australian craft beer and WA’s Matilda Bay.
Beer drinkers can also take a quick trip around the beer world here at Mr Henderson with Negra Modelo from Mexico, Alhambra from Spain, Red Stripe from Jamaica, Erdinger 0% from Germany, Mythos from Greece, Leffe Blonde from Belgium, and Abita Amber and Pale Ale from New Orleans amongst the offerings.
Wine drinkers will find plenty to like here too, with an interesting curated list that includes whites from Marlborough, Yarra Valley, South Australia, Western Australia and the Mornington Peninsula and France, Roses from South Australia and Italy and Reds from NZ, WA, SA and France.
Meantime Sparkling Wine includes Italian prosecco, SA Bird in Hand and Drappier Cate D’Or from France.
Like everything else at Mr Henderson, spirits are not your usual run-of-the-mill, with a selection derived where possible from boutique or Oz distillers such as Hippocampus Vodka, Bundaberg Select Vat Rum and Four Pillars Gin.
The cocktails list is a work in progress and features a handful of classic like Bloody Mary, Old Fashioned, Espresso Martini and Old Fashioned along with refreshers like Watermelon Spritz and Passionfruit Cooler.
As well as the option to BYO food, Mr Henderson has a small but tasty range of bar snacks available such as Rosemary Grissini wrapped in jamon with creamy Meredith cheese, Fremantle Octopus marinated in chilli and lime and Maggie Beer pate served with Byron Bay sea salt biscuits.
*The menus may have changed since our visit.
69 Brighton Pde