This category contains 12 posts

Social Spy** The Gay Bar VIP Launch Party hosted by Trevor Ashley // August 6th

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Oxford Street just got a lot more colourful – as the hottest new club ‘The Gay Bar’ has just opened!
Located in the heart of Sydney’s gay scene, the glitzy new venue was curated and conceived by independent event producers ‘In The Dark’, who have more than a decade of parties and concerts under their belt!
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Set apart from other venues, the three-storey club offers a slick party with delicious cocktails, as well as some of Sydney’s top DJs and entertainers.
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At the opening night on Tuesday, delicious samples from the fab new menu, which included hot dogs, burgers and pizza made by Head Chef Mark Proudfoot, made the rounds.
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Co-owners Stephen Craddock & Nelson De Sousa, as well as VIP guests, drag queen Trevor Ashley, Danni Da Ros from The Voice Australia, designer Henry Roth and actor Dominic Allburn, attended the official launch.
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The club is decked out with funky large portraits of celebrities and huge chandeliers, and each level has a DJ and dance floor.
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It’s open from 5pm every night until late – so make sure you don’t miss out on all the fun!
Check out for more information on Oxford Street’s newest nightspot.

WHERE:                           231 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst

TRADING HOURS:             Tuesday – Sunday               5pm til late

ONLINE/SOCIAL MEDIA:       #gaybarsydney



Stephen Craddock & Nelson De Sousa (Co-Owners), Mark Proudfoot (Head Chef)

Trevor Ashley (Drag Queen), Danni Da Ros (The Voice), Henry Roth (Designer), Dominic Allburn (Actor)

Louise Vuitton, Rhuma Hazzet, Ivy League & Vybe  (Drag Queens)

Social Spy** Chic Shiny Hotspot for the Footloose and Fancy-Free

We’re very excited about the VIP launch of The Gay Bar taking place on 6th August!!!

The Gay Bar is set to be Sydney’s most fabulous new venue… A high camp wonderland that is part French palace, part dance floor, and part bar and restaurant.

Nestled on the Taylor Square end of Oxford Street, The Gay Bar officially launches on Tuesday August 6th with a VIP party that will awaken the inner diva.

The dashing disco ball destination is free of pretention and full of sass. Set apart from its neighbouring venues, The Gay Bar delivers a clean and slick party venue backed up with awesome food and drink offerings, delicious cocktails, and some of Sydney’s best DJs and entertainers.

The three floors of Gay Bar offer three different ‘flavours’; Perched on the top floor is a plush party and function space that takes its cues from the Palace of Versailles where you’ll party like Marie Antoinette…with better DJs and a Shlong Island Ice Tea-in-hand.

On the kitsch and colourful second level – styled as a chimera of an 80s socialite loft pad and Dame Edna’s lounge room – beautiful people will hit the dance floor, bouncing to the basslines.

Or maybe you’ll get comfy on the homey ground floor with booth seating and a drool-worthy menu sporting specials like $1 hotdogs, $5 burgers and an irresistible meatball offering. With renowned ex-Guillaume at Bennelong Head Chef Mark Proudfoot at the helm, there is much more than just balls, snags and buns up for grabs!

Whether you’re in for a special event on the glamorous top floor, Tranny Bingo and a casual meal, Drag Sunday Roast, or just a night out on the town, The Gay Bar is set to become a true Sydney institution.

Gay-owned and operated, The Gay Bar is the brain child of two of Sydney’s top movers and shakers in the industry, Stephen Craddock and Nelson De Sousa, directors of In The Dark, Australia’s leading independent event production company. They have worked with Grace Jones, Sophie Ellis Bextor, The Freemasons, Danni Minogue and many more.

With over ten years’ experience in producing Australia’s largest gay and lesbian parties, events and tours, they know what makes a great venue and a fantastic night out. In the Dark is renowned for their majorly successful parties including DILF and Swagger, as well as the spectacular Mardi Gras White Party. For Craddock and De Sousa, the natural next step was a venue.

Bringing us to The Gay Bar’s official launch… A venue like this deserves a seriously fun party. So from 7pm Tuesday 6th August, The Gay Bar will open its doors to some of the scene’s highest flyers, keeping the bubbles flowing and the delectable canapés circulating. A dazzling line-up of roving entertainers, delicious eye candy, drags and divas will be dotted over the three levels… all hosted by Miss Understanding herself, one of Australia’s most loved drag queens, the incredible Trevor Ashley.

Trevor Ashley has graced the stage in Priscilla Queen of the Desert – The Musical, Jerry Springer the Opera, Hairspray, Liza (On an E), I’m Every Woman and Showqueen, among many, many more as a cabaret showgirl beyond compare. From New York to the Opera House to TV and his own CDs, Ashley brings magic to everything he touches.

So slap on the lashes and the sparkle dahhling and get ready for a whole lotta fabulosity at the Gay Bar.

Trading Hours:
Tuesday – Sunday 5pm til late

Online/Social Media: #gaybarsydney


Sydney Social 101 was invited to the launch of BEENLEIGH RUM as it was re-launched here in Sydney last night, with the smooth Australian rum warming stylish guests on the cold Sydney evening.

Held at the stunning Low302 on Crown Street in Darlinghurst, the venue housed approximately 100 guests, including trade and industry representatives, Sydney socialites and lifestyle media. Vok Beverages hosted this invite- only event to celebrate the re-launch of the iconic Australian brand and introduce the new addition, Beenleigh Honey.


On arrival, guests were treated to delicious Beenleigh cocktails, followed by a stand-out selection of roving canapés, matched perfectly to accompany each rum. The cocktails were specifically created for this event by Low302 bar manager, Reece Griffiths.


The Beenleigh Rum welcome cocktail creations included the ‘Cream Honey Punch,’ which featured Beenleigh Honey, Cream Honey, house made sherbet, citrus, earl grey tea and spices with fresh fruits. This creative beverage was a great way to introduce the new Beenleigh Honey rum, which utilizes Ligurian honey from Cliffords Farm on Kangaroo Island in the blend.


The second cocktail offered to guests was the ‘Old Vice’, a delicious concoction of Beenleigh 5 Year Old Rum, cigar syrup and chocolate bitters. Following this, the remaining cocktail featured throughout the night was the ‘Highball #5’, a simply delicious blend of Beenleigh White Rum, lime juice, apple juice and Falernum syrup.

John Mulraney, Head Distiller

John Mulraney, Head Distiller

The evening proceeded with a brand presentation conducted by Alice Hemming of Vok Beverages. Then together with John Mulraney, Beenleigh Distillery manager, they conducted rum tastings where guests sampled each of the three products neat, relishing in the rich and distinctive flavor profile of each Beenleigh Rum. John Mulraney spoke to the guests about rum production, including fermentation, distillation and aging while talking through the history of Beenleigh Rum and the distillery.

Guests were fascinated to learn that Beenleigh holds the acclaim of being Australia’s oldest distillery registered in 1884 and includes a blending hall, warehouse and administration facilities. In 2012 Vok Beverages acquired the Beenleigh Rum Brand and now holds full ownership of the Beenleigh Distilling Company and Beenleigh brand.


Vok Beverages, now the sole owner of the Beenleigh brand and the heritage-listed distillery, recently re-launched Beenleigh Rum to the Australian market with sophisticated new packaging, improved premium liquid and an addition to the portfolio, Australia’s first honey infused rum. The varieties in the premium spirit’s portfolio include Dark 5 Year Old Rum, White and Beenleigh Honey which are ideal sipping style rums, smooth enough to be enjoyed neat on the rocks, as a mixer or as a key ingredient to your favourite cocktail.

Jay &Bridget Gray

Jay &Bridget Gray

Simon Toohey, Stuart Carr, Alice Hemming

Simon Toohey, Stuart Carr, Alice Hemming

Matt Rimmer, Eddie Brook,Blake Kramer

Matt Rimmer, Eddie Brook,Blake Kramer

Luke Jacobz, Simon Hancock

Luke Jacobz, Simon Hancock




Beenleigh Rum is more than just a rum, more than just a story and spirit – Beenleigh Rum is a tribute to bold Australian enterprise and the stuff legends are made of. The re-launch trade event held in Sydney was the perfect way to re- establish this proud iconic Australian rum and introduce the delectable new Beenleigh Honey.


Eau de Vie & Bakery Hill whisky partner up to create a bespoke blend


Award winning cocktail bar Eau de Vie has partnered with acclaimed whisky producer Bakery Hill to create a bespoke blend for one of the barʼs signature cocktails.

In what the venue believe is a world first, manager Greg Sanderson has worked with David Baker of Bakery Hill to create a blend specifically for the barʼs variation of the famous Bobby Burns cocktail.

“The Bobby Burns is one of the worldʼs great whisky cocktails, and we wanted to do something special for our new cocktail list.” Sanderson says. “Working with David Baker has been amazing and after a couple of months worth of sampling and experimentation I am very excited about the whisky blend we have created for our Bobby Burns.”

“To craft a great cocktail not only is it important to have a vision as to what you are trying to achieve but also to develop the structure on which the cocktail itself is based. As the whisky is one of the most important structural components Greg and I spent months discussing, crafting and refining the flavour and aroma of the very whisky to be used as the foundation of this remarkable Bobby Burns”, says David Baker. “Once this was achieved Sanderson applied his genius and the result is pure magic”

Eau de Vieʼs Bakery Hill whisky will be served exclusively in the Bobby Burns Cocktail.
Eau de Vieʼs Bobby Burns Cocktail

Eau DeVie Bakery Hill Bobby Burns Whisky is stirred down with fig infused house blended vermouth, and a dash of D.O.M. Benedictine and Angostura bitters. Served up with home-made shortbread.

50ml Bakery Hillʼs Eau de Vie Whisky
20ml House blended vermouth infused with fig ( 10ml D.O.M. Benedictine
1 dash angostura bitters
Stirred, served on an antique side plate with doily and short bread cookie

Sydney’s Cheap Eats 101

Feeling the purse strings tightening this month? These cheap and delicious eats will have you sorted till pay day, whilst keeping your social life in tact.

These are some of the best cheap eats you’ll find in Sydney – tried and tested by our very own food reviewer, who’s eaten her way through Sydney (Pac-man style).

We have you covered for every day of the week…


Forresters: Newly revamped with a fresh new menu that’s drool-worthy. Putting up a delicious and juicy $5 steak all day – comes with mash and gravy, just buy a drink!

336 Riley Street Surry Hills
(02) 9212 3035

The Norfolk: Does killer mini burgers for $4 each. Choose from seven mouth-watering options including Cheese Burger, Feelin O Fish, Chicken Katsu, Pork Belly, El Nino and for the vego’s – the almighty “Mac ‘N’ Cheese.”

305 Cleveland St. Surry Hills
(02) 9699 3177

The Dolphin: Do a pretty damn good Grain fed Rump steak Monday-Wednesday. Comes with your Choice of Fries or Mash, 3 Sauces + Green Salad for only $12

412 Crown Street Surry Hills
(02)9331 4800

The Passage: Serves their tender Angus Sirloin Steak with Red Wine Jus and crisp shoe string fries or only $10.

231 Victoria Street Darlinghurst NSW 2010
(02) 9358 6116

They don’t call it tight-arse Tuesday for nothing…..

The Passage: Have a massive 50% off their food menu. This includes crispy golden Zucchini Flowers stuffed with goats cheese and perfectly drizzled with truffle honey…to die for!

The Norfolk: $3 tacos madness – these are positively delish and come in beef, pork, veg, chicken, fish and duck encased in a soft tortilla, garnished with an array of fresh mex favourites and topped off with their famous chipotle mayo…yum!


The Passage: Is a winner again with $4 sliders and ciders all day long.

‘The Mighty Duck’ w/ Chinese Style Peking Duck, Shallots, Cucumber and Hoisin Sauce


You can choose from the 3 standard options from the a la carte menu as well as a weekly “slider du jour.” Recent additions have included Veal Saltimbocca w/ Sweet Potato Rosti and Cheesy Polenta.

The ‘Pie Float Slider’: w/ Shepherds Pie & Mushy Peas

You can also choose from Slow-Roasted Goose w/ Chestnut Stuffing, Cassis Onion Marmalade and Horseradish Cream….drool!

Johnny Wong’s Dumpling Bar: $1 Dumpling mania. Choose from 4 tantalising options including pork, prawn gow gee, chicken and water chestnut and vegetarian. Sharing is caring so stock up!

Kinselas Building (next to The Standard and half way up the stairs towards Lo-Fi)
Level 1, 383 Bourke Street, Darlinghurst
(02) 9331 3100

The Carrington: $3 Pintxos – Individual morsels of goodness that are gone in just a couple of bites. These include a potato tortilla stack with jamon and cheese and AMAZING black paella balls. These options change each week so you’ll want to come back and try them all!

563 Bourke Street Surry Hills
(02) 9360 4714


Hugo’s: Try its award winning pizza for only $5. The crust is perfectly waif thin with toppings that include all your traditional favourites with a chic twist. Choose from chilli prawn (personal fave), Pork Belly, Ham & Pineapple, Pepperoni and a sensational truffle mushroom one for the vegos.

1/33 Bayswater Road Potts Point
(02) 9332 1227

Don Don: A great little gem in the heart of Oxford St – serving delectable sushi hand rolls from only $2, delicious rice bowls (that come with a side of tasty U-Don soup) as well as all of your favourite Japanese cuisine all week long.


El Loco: For some fun, post drinking nourishment head to this local haunt – serving up tasty pockets of heaven till the wee hours. Choices include lemongrass beef, spit roasted pork, prawn, chilli marinated tofu, chicken, and (for those who are feeling extra courageous after a few beverages) “The Secret Taco.”

Excelsior Hotel
64 Foveaux Street, Surry Hills
(02) 9211 4945

Chat Thai: All your authentic Thai favourites and cheap as chips! Top picks include Pad Si Ew. and Emerald Duck. They also have an insane selection of Thai deserts that come in all sorts of colours, textures and flavours, including do-nut fingers with Pandan custard dip and Mango sticky rice. Open till 2am for those looking for a late night fix.

They also won the SMH Everyday Eats Overall Champion Award this year! They have a more upmarket offering at Westfield Pitt Street Mall, they also really push for the affordable food angle!

In addition to this branch, they also have a branch on Manly Wharf, so you can even get your Chat Thai fix at the beach! It used to be a take-away bar, but now is a fully fledged restaurant with about 50 seats and should receive its liquor licence in mid-December! Woop!

20 Campbell Street, Haymarket (02) 9211 180

So this is the first of many ‘ Cheap Eats’ posts for Sydney Social 101! If you have any specific suburb requests, please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

This post was compiled by Sydney Social 101’s roving food reporter, Sasha Tsibulya.


So silly season is almost upon us and the true start of the festivities bestowed upon Australians over the summer period is of course the Melbourne Cup!

Sydney Social 101 has compiled a guide for the Melbourne Cup celebrations across Sydney.

In no order of preference, here they are in all their glory:


The Heritage Atrium will boast: Sweeps a DJ, the must-have Projection screen & TV’s so that you can capture the action as it unfolds,  lucky door prizes, a fashion show and live cooking stations.

All this for just $55 per person, which  includes all food and a glass of Chandon on arrival. Bookings here.
GRAZIA will be hosting the ‘Get Racey’ luncheon at Hugos Bar Pizza with Editor Amy Molloy. Tickers are $120 pp includes a 3-course lunch plus all beverages. If this sounds like an event you’d like to back, bookings can be made at 02 9357 4411.


The functions teams at Keystone are raring to go with a range of Melbourne cup packages. With a range of delicious meals, beer, bubbles on offer and big screens in each venue what better way to make sure you don’t miss out on the action! Each Melbourne cup package includes big screens, sweeps & fashion on the field. Plus TAB facilities a stone throw away from each venue.

The Loft, King Street Wharf – $99 per person, cocktail style. This includes a premium 3 hour beverage package and 8 piece canapé style lunch. For more information, contact 02 8070 2400 or

Cargo Lounge, King Street Wharf – $99 per person, cocktail style. This includes a premium 3 hour beverage package and 8 piece canapé style lunch. For more information, contact 02 8070 2400 or

Cargo Bar, King Street Wharf – $99 per person, sit down lunch. Includes 3 drinks and a 3 course meal, of a shared antipasto platter to start, alternate main and dessert canapés. To book, contact 02 9262 1777 or

Bungalow 8, King Street Wharf – $120 per person, sit down lunch. Includes 3 drinks and a 3 course meal, of entrée, alternative main, followed by dessert canapés. To book, contact 02 9299 4660 or

The Sugar Mill, Potts Point – $59 per person, sit down lunch. Includes 3 drinks and a 3 course meal, alternate main and shared dessert platter. To book, contact 02 9363 7333 or

Kit & Kaboodle, Potts Point – $89 per person, cocktail style. Includes a premium 3 hour beverage package and 8 piece canapé style lunch. For more information, contact 02 8070 2400 or email

Gazebo Wine Garden, Potts Point – $130 per person, sit down lunch. Includes a glass of bubbles on arrival, 4 course lunch with a selection of 3 mains. To book, contact 02 9357 5333 or email

The Winery, Surry Hills – Choose between two options 1) $120 per person, cocktail style. Includes a glass of bubbles on arrival and a laneway style BBQ.  Or 2) $130 per person, sit down lunch. Includes a glass on arrival, 4 course seafood lunch with a selection of two mains. To book, contact 02 9331 0833 or email

Manly Wine, Manly – $110 per person, sit down lunch. Includes a glass of bubbles on arrival plus a choice of his or hers 4 course menu with alternative mains. To Book, contact 02 8966 9000 or email


The Kids Cup at ivy Charity luncheon is being held at the Ivy Ballroom of course! Tickets range from $200 per person or $2000 for a table. The cost includes three-course lunch including Chandon NV, wine and beer as well as sweepstakes, entertainment and live coverage of the race. All profits raised will go to Cure Our Kids. Bookings can be made here: 02 9240 3000


Melbourne Cup After-Party at Upstairs Beresford. Punters can choose to continue the horseplay after the big race. Free entry and live entertainment including Furnace & The Fundamentals to party the night away, music to our ears!


Bavarian Bier Café gears up for the race that stops the nation – The glamour and excitement of Melbourne Cup is fast approaching and Bavarian Bier Café is hosting fever pitched fun across its restaurants including CBD favourites O’Connell and York Street, Moore Park’s Entertainment Quarter, beachside suburbs Manly and Bondi, the north side’s Crows Nest and Chatswood, and Parramatta in the city’s west.

Whether you are excited to have a flutter on the horses or simply hoping to soak up the atmosphere of race day, Bavarian Bier Café is the place to treat yourself to more than just the office sweepstake this Melbourne Cup – with all participating venues screening the afternoon of racing live.

Special Cup day festivities include:

o    Sweepstakes, spot prizes and live screenings of the race across all restaurants.

o    Set menus including delicious homemade pretzels, Bavarian deli platters, schnitzels and traditional apple strudel. 2 course $49pp and 3 course $59pp. For bookings at Manly, Crows Nest, O’Connell Street and York Street restaurants.

o    Best dressed prize awarded to the most glamorous guy and gal.

Racing enthusiasts and aspiring trackside princesses alike can celebrate Melbourne Cup in true Bavarian style at Bavarian Bier Café. For more information about Melbourne Cup at Bavarian Bier Café, visit  or book by emailing or callling 02 9259 5680.

Mumm Champagne Spring Carnival Bar at The BELLEVUE

Located upstairs at the Bellevue, the beautiful NV Mumm Champagne Spring Carnival Bar, styled by designer Michelle Leslie, was saturated with spring flowers, candles, painted murals, a freshly ‘turfed’ outdoor terrace and splashes of Mumm red and gold from the red carpet leading upstairs to lamp shades and Mumm imagery.

Set to be the place to be in Sydney during the spring racing carnival, the stylish ‘pop up’ bar will host Caulfield Cup, Cox Plate and Derby Day, as well as a special men’s dinner, a sumptuous Damien Pignolet dinner and the ultimate in Melbourne Cup day celebrations.

Bellevue Hotel co-owner and Riversdale Group CEO Paddy Coughlan welcomed guests, while ambassador for the NV Mumm Champagne Spring Carnival Bar Laura Csortan told VIP and celeb partygoers she was thrilled to be back from LA and in one of her favourite Sydney pubs for the launch of the bar, and DJ Alex Dimitriades spun cool tunes throughout the night.

The NV Mumm Champagne Spring Carnival Bar will run through until Melbourne Cup day on Tuesday November 6, and is available for group and function bookings.


From trackside to beachside all the glitz and glamour of Flemington will hit Cronulla when The Old Library Restaurant & Bar celebrates Melbourne Cup day in style.

A sumptuous three course luncheon  for just $75pp has been designed by Head Chef David Magill and showcases the very best in seasonal produce and modern Italian flavour.

David Magill says, “Spring isn’t just about racing, it’s also the time to celebrate nature’s bounty. So why not heighten your glass of Moët with the freshest the season has to offer.”

At The Old Library David’s spring inspired Melbourne Cup menu includes “Stuzzichini” (Appertizers) of snapper carpaccio, baby beetroots and blood orange and an amazing salad of marinated artichokes, broad beans, fennel, olive and purple potatoes.

There will be all the usual Melbourne Cup Day celebrations, including big screen broadcast of the races, a sweepstake and fashion parade that will help set the scene in the award winning stylish surrounds of the spectacular Old Library.

The Old Library’s Melbourne Cup Luncheon will run on Tuesday 6th November and is available from $75pp.  The Old Library is the only Shire restaurant to make it into the Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide. Bookings are essential.

Address: 15 Surf Rd, Cronulla, NSW

Phone: (02) 9544 5360

Opening Hours: Thursday – Sunday, midday ‘til late


Suits and frocks, fillies and jocks, Melbourne Cup unites style queens, gamblers and equine enthusiasts once a year and this November, Rozelle’s 3 Weeds restaurant brings the festivities to Sydney with a Carnival Cup Luncheon for all.

The Restaurant at 3 Weeds brings all the fun and excitement of Flemington to Rozelle with an elegant Melbourne Cup day menu devised by Head Chef Leigh McDivitt.

Large screens provide ample views of the racing action, while sweepstakes and prizes for best dressed make for some great fun off the track.

True to tradition, toast with a glass of bubbles on arrival, before indulging in a 3 course spring luncheon with entrees such as Camomile tea smoked quail with hand-picked crab, basil, sweet corn and ginger jus gras.

For those looking for a more casual experience, ‘Picnic In the Bar’ entails a gourmet hamper for 5, filled with delights such as Chicken & tarragon terrine and smoked salmon, dill & crème fraiche. The $150 hamper is perfect for a relaxing long ‘picnic’ lunch and comes with the promise of dry weather, unlike the imminent rain Melbourne is infamous for.

There will be plenty of activities on the day both in the Bar and Restaurant.  Try your luck in the sweepstakes or the team race tipping competition where $500 in 3 Weeds vouchers will be up for grabs.

There will be prizes for Best Dressed Male and Female so don your race day best and join the 3 Weeds this Melbourne Cup!

The Carnival Cup Luncheon, held on Thursday November 1st, is available from just $80pp

Bookings are essential.

To book, head to or P: 02 9818 2788

The Restaurant is open:

Dinner – Tuesday to Saturday from 6pm.

Lunch – Last Sunday of the Month from 12pm

Special Events – Upon request

SO what you waiting for, there is SO much to choose from – GET INVOLVED!

ATTITUDE FOR HAIR – Taft FULL ON launches new female range


On Saturday I was invited to the Taft FULL ON Style Bar, to celebrate the introduction of its first tailor-made range for women, designed to create statement styles that make hair styling fun.


The Taft FULL ON Style Bar was located at fashion hotspot, The Grand Social (think stylist boudoir and escape from the city!). Members of the public dropped in for express hair styling and fashion tips from Fashion TV presenter, Amber Renae.  Amber told me that  I have summer tones, which is nice as I like all things summer! (I just wish it would hurry up, ha!)

I was introduced to the new range brings, which high quality styling at an affordable price and pretty funky packaging, somewhat reminiscent of another fave of mine: Bed Head.

I was pleased to see that the unique Taft FULL ON Female formula really did bring a high-performance hold that lasts, without any stickiness or residue (which I hate), so that styles stay fresh and position perfect from day to night.


The new range includes:

Taft FULL ON Freeze It Fixing Hairspray

RRP: $5.99

Lasting up to 48 hours, Taft FULL ON Fixing Hairspray freezes styles in place without stickiness or residue and can be easily brushed out.

Taft FULL ON Booster Volume Mousse

RRP: $5.99

Taft Full On Booster Volume Mousse creates visible volume and body, even for the finest of hair. Without stickiness or residue, it provides a strong hold that can be brushed out.

Taft FULL ON Guardian Angel Straightening Iron Spray

RRP: $6.99

Taft FULL ON Guardian Angel Straightening Iron Spray offers up to 220C heat protection, protecting hair against the damaging effects of heat styling and providing a glossy finish to any look.

Taft FULL ON Smooth Operator Anti-Frizz Lotion

RRP: $6.99

Taft Full ON Smooth Operator Anti-Frizz Lotion shapes, smooths and controls fly-away hairs, whilst protecting hair against damage from heat styling and UV rays.


For pictures of the event and hair styling suggestions, head to or


For stockist details and product information, please contact the Taft FULL ON Advice Line 1800 022 219 or visit us at

Restaurant Review*** Food Society has it all

On Friday night I had the pleasure of being invited to Food Society to experience its cuisine and of course, vodka! Not only has the Sydney restaurant/bar become synonymous with exceptional food and the place to head to when you’re in need of a tasty morsel with European flair, and a good dash of cool ambience, it now boasts a new chef in Ali Bahmad, and a vodka bar which offers as comprehensive a vodka range as anything you’d experience in its native Poland.

The vodka specialists

I had walked past the venue before and thought how quaint it looked and how I’d like to go there one day! It’s located next to another of my favourites, Cafe Pacifico on Riley Street in Darlinghurst. If you’re ever in the area there’s lots of places ‘off the beaten track’ in the surrounds of the area.

Back to the case in point, ha! In addition to Food Society priding itself on educating Sydneysiders on the merits of enjoying vodka on its own, they also work closely with a Melbourne mixologist to incorporate these interesting flavours into a new cocktail list!

After we had been escorted to our seats, our waiter for the evening, Matt told us about the imported vodka range, which he advised is over 70-deep, and will eventually boast 100 variants of the spirit! Impressive!

Some of the quirkier flavours include: honey, orange and clove, raspberry, quince, apple, cucumber, burnt caramel, peanut butter, jelly and coconut!

The Czech and Polish beers were yum!

My favourite was the honey vodka, it is tradition to drink the vodka as a shot with your guests at the table. We of course invited Matt to join us! In addition to the vodka, Food Society of course places equal importance on the fare it serves, which is created esteemed chef Ali Bahmad and his team, who says: “I’ve always had a passion for all things artistic, whether it is theatre, movies, music or art. Food and cooking is my outlet to showcase my artistic side and talent.”

The starter – ‘cigar’ – Spinich, mint and feta

Ali hails from Aqua Luna Bar and Restaurant, La Sala, Sake Restaurant & Bar, and now, head chef at Food Society – impressive resume hey!

Fried Cauliflower – Surprisingly amazing! Like healthy wedges

Matt explained to use that Food Society opened its doors in August 2011, and that they had recently celebrated their first birthday! Many happy returns I hope!!

The slow cooked lamb ribs were out of this world! The best I’ve ever had – The meat literally fell off the bone

The venue itself takes you on a trip back in time to the 1950s – it was like stepping into grandma’s comfy lounge, where an eclectic mix of modern European fare awaited. We went on a journey that involved a love affair with good food and exceptional vodka [and other spirits], it definitely didn’t disappoint and I’d go as far to say that it was one of the best meals I’ve had in Sydney!

Equally the duck was phenomenal!

Starting the first weekend in Spring Food Society is launching “Secret Women’s Business” which is “kind of high tea, kind of naughty”… a canapé sort of degustation and amazing flavours in vodka “sippers”, it’s not your average high tea…. bookings only, it’s a great afternoon with the girls… Get it booked in! Ha!

 About The Food Society team

The Food Society was established by long-time colleagues, Brendan Lloyd and Sonia Stanojevic. With a combined experience of over 30 years, both Brendan and Sonia were young entrepreneurs in and out of the food industry, having set up businesses at a very young age. Brendan’s food experience commenced with commercial cookery, working his way into the sales and event management area. Sonia started her own food business early on, then moved into hotels, starting at the front of house and moving into all areas of sales and marketing for high profile events. Brendan and Sonia met through managing a catering event business in Sydney together.

Executive Event Chef Khalil Perazzo and Head Restaurant Chef Ali Bahmad lead the Food Society kitchen team.

All of the Food Society menus are designed by our Executive Chef Kahlil Perazzo (ex, Tetsuya, Balzac, Quay, Rockpool – the list goes on, he’s very accomplished) and while his primary focus here is the Special Event Catering and bespoke menus, his creativity has heavily influenced the restaurant and our Head Chef Ali;

On the service side, Robert Kania, head staff trainer and event manager has a background which stems from personally looking after the board of Directors at Merryl and Lynch, New York. Head Event Manager Darius Grygo has worked running events at Wall Street’s Cipriani’s and served loyal clients including legendary band, U2.

Food Society has just also been nominated for an award in the ‘Caterer at an Event’ category, in the 2012 Restaurant and Catering Awards.

For more information visit; opening hours are Monday and Wednesday to Saturday, 5.30pm to 12.00am, Sunday 5.30pm to 12.00am, closed on Tuesdays, phone the venue for restaurant bookings on (02) 8090 3462. Address is 91 Riley Street, Darlinghurst, NSW 2010.

** Sydney Social 101 was invited to Food Society as a guest – However all views expressed in the post are the honest opinions of the author

Speakeasy Group celebrates five Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Bar Award nominations

I am lucky enough to live in an amazing city and attend amazing events. The Speakeasy Group is no exception in terms of representing the amazing venues that I have attended over the past three and a half years. So it is with great pleasure that I’m able to announce that the Speakeasy Group has been nominated in five categories in Tales of the Cocktail’s Spirited Awards, the biggest and most influential bar industry awards globally, including:

  • World’s Best Cocktail Bar – Eau de Vie Sydney
  • World’s Best Drink Selection – Eau de Vie Sydney
  • World’s Best Cocktail Menu – The Roosevelt
  • International Bartender of the Year – Max Greco, Eau de Vie Sydney
  • Best Bar Mentor – Sven Almenning (owner of Eau de Vie, Eau de Vie Melbourne and The Roosevelt)

Eau de Vie is by far and away one of the most stunning and atmospheric bars in Sydney, I have been a couple of times and would recommend it to anyone that is coming to Sydney. Previous reviews of the bars can be found here.

As for The Roosevelt, I have yet to frequent this venue; however I have heard amazing things – cocktails served on liquid nitrogen and served from treasure chests and trophies! I will be posting a review soon, so keep your eyes peeled!

To those of you who think New York and London are home to the world’s best bars will no longer have to stray as far from home with Sydney reaffirming its place on the map as a global leader in cocktail culture.

Sven Almenning, owner of The Speakeasy Group said “It’s incredible to once again be honoured and included in such esteemed company and fantastic to also see more Australian venues earn nominations in an increasingly competitive market.”

The Speakeasy Group has been recognised alongside some of the most well-known and respected bars across the globe. Each of the awards only features ten finalists per category, and the nominees are representatives from all over the world. For a full listing of awards and other nominees, check out the Tales of the Cocktail website here:

The winners will be announced in June at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans.

Eau de Vie: 229 Darlinghurst Rd, Darlinghurst NSW 2010

P: 02 9357 2470


EDV Melbourne: 1 Malthouse Lane, Melbourne Vic 3000

P: 03 9663 0847


The Roosevelt: 32 Orwell St, Potts Point NSW 2011

P: 02 8096 1787


SOCIAL SPY** Awkward opening, Darlinghurst

Bree Robertson Awkward grand opening media launch contortion show

The month of March saw the much anticipated grand opening of Awkward Sydney, a hybrid venue creating a freshness never seen before in Sydney. The Darlinghurst Road space hosted a mix of industry and upcoming talent, who were entertained by a fusion of singers, artists and the amazing contortionist Bree Robertson.

Awkward Sydney was created by Fuzz Ali, who has a passion for bringing talented people together to achieve their dreams. To enable this, the venue will transform into a bar, restaurant, fashion studio, art gallery, music room or dance hall depending on the day of the week, or in last night’s case – all at the one time.

Fuzz had this to day: “Sydney is just waking up after its post Olympic slumber. It seems that for 10 years it became fashionable to think that Sydney wasn’t good enough anymore and Melbourne became the new black.

“For years we heard about how the night life down south was so much better, mainly due to the fact that they had cooler bars. It’s safe to say that Sydney has again eclipsed Melbourne when it comes to the cool factor. Sydney is the new (again) capital of cool!

“Our night life has gone from pokie infested pubs and thumping night clubs to a new wave of cool small bars, restaurant/bars, and various other hybrid venues, like Awkward, that provide a space for people to come and just be. Without a doubt, the scene is becoming less “I want to be seen” to being “I want to see this”.

“There is definitely more substance that is leading to Sydney’s growing reputation as an amazing global city. One thing I will say though, is that council’s late night trading policy is going to hurt this reputation. Small venues create a buzz and closing them at midnight means that that feeling does not carry on through the night. We need a review of council legislation so that smaller spaces can trade as late night venues for people who don’t want to go get trashed and pass out in a corner. All in all, it’s a great time to be in Sydney!”

I couldn’t agree more, I think this is the time for Sydneysiders, and the rest of Australia to wake up and see an emerging bar/ club scene that is competitive on an international stage.

Awkward Sydney is located at Awkward, Ground Floor, 169-173 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst NSW 2010

Echoer – Featured Blogger


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