Melbourne’s New Cocktail Bar: Lover

Melbourne’s iconic Chapel Street has a brand new broody saloon, Lover.

Words by Associate Editor, Stephanie Aikins

The cocktail bar and dining experience are sparked by the collaboration of Will Newton, former Saigon Sally, and head chef Paul Turner, ex-Cutler and Co., Donovans and Qualia.

Food is served until 1.00am and consists mainly of share plates, with a few substantial mains on offer. Paul’s signature dishes include pan-fried gnocchi dressed with zucchini along with fresh basil and cheese; kingfish crudo served with cucumber squeezed yuzu and charred avocado and steak tartare with tarragon, egg yolk and radish. For those who simply can’t decide, there is a $60 ‘Feed Me’ menu bringing together a selection of the best bites.

On the drinks front, there is a curated wine list, spanning local and international wines, and a cocktail menu including bespoke creations, a selection of aperitif-style drinks and even a section dedicated to negroni lovers. Its standouts include the Lover Martini and the Orange and Rosemary G&T, with edible flowers and torched rosemary.

Keeping with the mysterious, saloon vibe the bar is mood-lit and features seating booths tucked away in hidden nooks.

This places oozes cool whilst still maintaining an inviting sense of warmth – the perfect place to enjoy a relaxing drink after work or over the weekend.