Thursday, January 15, 2015

Closing 2014 - The Shirt Bar Frat Party

Shirt Bar end of year Frat Party 2014 - Adam & Louka
What is going on in Sydney with the whisky scene is truly epic and it is without question a golden era for the scene as a whole. Will it last who knows but right now lap it up. So what a day the 19th Dec was to be for us as we transitioned from one Christmas party to the next. Reluctantly leaving The Wild Rover Smoky Christmas in the southern steps of the Sydney (reluctantly because there was a lot of whisky), the Whisky Ledger and myself were committed to traveling onwards into the northern tip of city to attend the all time classic Shirt Bar end of year Frat Party.

For those regular readers, including D.T.W.C. members, you will note the Shirt Bar is all to often frequented by a few of us for whisky tastings. OK maybe also picking up the odd pocket square or lapel pin in a passing fancy. I like The Shirt Bar. I like it a lot. Ok so the whisky shelves are not weighted like some of the other bars but the choice is ripe, the beer is fresh and well priced, the shirts are smooth, the staff are fun, the digs is happening, and those cold cuts… oh my those cold cuts! If you have not attended even one Scotch Club Tasting Sessions (it is not always Scotch mid you) at the Shirt Bar it is about time you did.

YWatch & Whisky was on one side of the line and we, Whisky Ledger and myself, on the other. Any crossing was sorely frown on before ejection back into the street. No beer, a bag full of camera equipment, spitting rain, and memories of a party full of Laphroaig whisky we just vacated. It was not all that bad as a rocking band had setup right next to us and began to belt out some pretty sweet tunes. That line though. That infamous virtual line we could not cross while watching those brews being pulled by Adam. I will remember.
That virtual line we could not cross
es we could hear the party well before we arrived. Rounding the corner we were expecting a little delay as we had already had word the event was oversubscribed. To greet us at the virtual line was a bouncer who refused to show his face to the camera every time I whipped it around but still somehow had eyes in the back of his head.

Soon enough we were in and then things started to lock into place. Adam Hofbauer was dressed as a human keg and tapping Fat Yak into those obligatory red plastic cups we see on American TV shows, while Louka dished out free pizza as the staff near collapsing under the pressure of festive insanity.

The Shirt Bar as it was 30 sec after entry while Adam looks like he could do this all day long.
Decked out in stereotypical American paraphernalia the Shirt Bar was still open for business somehow! When else can you shop for a shirt or button hole pin and be server beer and pizza at the same time? Where tell me, where!

Slipping in and out of the store as the rain washed through, we sipped brews, and watched very poorly executed games of pingpong until Whisky Ledger did a Cuban cigar run. Yes he knew somewhere that could deliver on a night like this. Of note Watch & Whisky failed in a previous attempt but a quest is a quest and Whisky Ledger was determined. High fives all round. The whisky of choice was a Woodford Reserve Distillers Select matched to either the more subtle 1875 Romeo y Julieta or heavier Montecristo Yellow. The wind was blowing, the cigars were spluttering, Watch & Whisky was fretting about both, but the whisky was sweet, and the band played on.

Live band, cigars, and whisky
As the night rang to a close and the bar refused further orders we stepped back past that virtual line the bouncer had given up on hours before. It was a good night, it was a great night, so we thank the Shirt Bar for another fabulous event. Knowing the night was going to be wet I came prepared with a hip flask filled with the sweet fluid of Glenlivet 18yo. mmmmmm that ‘livet made the walk to the public transport well worth it.

Cheers Shirt Bar and see you again soon for another Scotch Club Tasting Session.

The Baron