Greaser bar is a secret subterranean bar of retro American-style cool found in the cellar of a 130-year-old heritage Fortitude Valley building.
You might need a map and a compass to find it, but as this is arguably Brisbane’s coolest bar, it’s well worth the hunt. Entry point is in the grungy red light district of Brunswick St (opposite the station) but once you step through the red door and follow the lights and industrial pipes down the alleyway Fortitude Valley (and Brisbane for that matter) fades to a distant memory.
The journey begins back at the double red pharmacy loading dock gates which, when the bar is happening, are open to Robyn Ward Lane*. Swagger down the lane and turn left past the Greaserbar’s graffiti-covered outdoor smoking lounge and past the bright lit galley kitchen where chefs are busy preparing buttermilk-fried chicken wings, hot dogs, wedge salads, crinkle-cut fries and Angus beef burgers for hungry bar patrons.
The entry to the ambient subterranean bar – a dimly lit brick foyer with black and white Elvis photo – is opposite. Inside is a virtual labyrinth of nooks and crannies divided by century-old exposed brick arches and faded vintage stencil ads for Pepsi Cola and the like.
Venture into the depths to a gritty graffiti-covered room with exposed pipes, the skeleton of some old restrooms and a disused brick fireplace, where some vintage pinball machines are soon to be installed.
Bag a seat in one of the booths, Levi jeans covered bar stools, or cabaret-style tables and chairs and kick back with some delicious US-style bar food and one of the hefty selection of local and imported craft beers, on tap and bottled, speakeasy-style cocktails, wines or whisky-dominated spirits.
Recommended in the beer stakes is the house Tap Dog on tap and cocktail-wise, the Cherry Berry Fizz (Tanqueray gin infused with berry, lemon juice, egg white and cherry soda) and the punch-packing Pony Boy Paloma (tequila, lime juice, agave and grapefruit foam).
Need to know: Music is as cool as the venue and later in the night the DJs take over the staircase. Thanks to a thick carpet on the floor, the acoustics are superb and this is one bar where decent conversation is on the menu too.
*Robyn Ward Lane is named after one of the Valley's living treasures - pharmacy assistant Robyn Ward who for the past 30 years has been dispensing no-nonsense advice and medicine to patrons of Delahunty's pharmacy since it opened in the adjacent historical building in 1979.
259A Brunswick St