Donny’s Bar, Manly

Donny's Bar 3

In the most unassuming of open-air arcades in a smallish beachside town called Manly, there’s a new bar and restaurant that’s humming along.

Its doors have been open for no longer than a few months and the crowds are only getting used-to the name, but what it does it does well; introducing some culture, some music and some old New York rustic style to the predominantly thong-wearing town.

Donny’s Bar is an establishment by Matt Clifton and Tol Broinovski who together envisioned a place they could call their own that brings together their equal loves for food and music. Their dream has been achieved. By offering a new place for locals to relax and unwind, enjoy live music and nibble away on a pretty extensive menu by Japanese chef Richi Dia, they have certainly filled a niche in Manly’s supposedly burgeoning small bar scene.

Playing entirely on the concept of going out to be social, Donny’s Bar offers a great menu of main plates and burgers or tapas inspired share plates with an Asian influence that are perfect for sharing. Chef Dia has years of experience in European and Japanese cuisine, so brings a very tasty point of difference to the menu, which when coupled with his funky eye for presentation, makes for a really great experience.

The drinks flow so peacefully from the wooden, deliberately grungy bar set-up, which pumps out drinks in recycled jars and martini glasses. Plymouth gin features quite prominently in a lot of the bar’s specialities, which works awesomely with the slightly Asian mixed cocktails.

What you really can’t put past Donny’s Bar, though, is the decor of the place. With dark corners, vintage worn leather bar stools, untreated wooden girders and benches with cost exposed brickwork and attractive light fixtures reminiscent of decades ago, it’s inviting to say the least.

The upstairs of the two-storey venue converts into a function area for those who’re splashing out, while the lower level plays stage to the great artists they have performing on the later nights of the week.

A cool set-up for the cool Sydneysider, Donny’s Bar is a definite for the list of places to go.

Tuesday – Thursday: 4pm – 12am

Friday – Saturday: 12pm – 12am

Sunday: 2pm – 10pm

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James Banham
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James Banham

Editor at THE F
James Banham is an Australian lifestyle, fashion and entertainment journalist. His writing can be found on these many topics and more in print and online publications around the country.
James Banham
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