The Walrus Club

· Monday January 7, 2013

2012 is over. Done. Dead, buried and cremated, even. And standing in its squalid ashes, a fierce and proud Khaleesi with the world at her feet, is The Walrus Club, Brisbane’s best new bar and the most compelling reason to believe that this town might yet have a soul worth saving.

Some of you will read that this place is tucked in and around the ancient foundations of The Regatta and dismiss it, noses upturned and hearts closed. You
do yourselves a great disservice. For even though it treads amongst rugby league drunkards and licentious undergraduates, The Walrus Club is no basement-level pub. No, it is more a Bacchanalian catacomb, gnarled and cavernous, slinking through the shadows beneath the thronging Luddites slamming fire engines a few feet above.

Deserted or packed, the intimate twists and deliquescent alleyways beg for drinkers of ambition. The bartenders, in turn, elevate your tastes and desires and deliver tonics nonpareil. The Martini Resistance, suitably titled, cradles one of Walrus’ 300 fine rums in a frosty solution of pineau de charentes, vermouth and citrus blossom honey water, before dragging in a hunk of smoked ham to twist this demented creation of head Walrus Krystal Hart into something revelatory.

It isn’t often that a big, bold commercial venture stirs such exalted praise. The Walrus Club is deserving and deserved. Gauntlet thrown, 2013; let’s see what you got.