The Glenmore lifts us up where we belong - with cold beers on their sunny rooftop
You know you're in a good Aussie pub when they have free sunscreen. There may be nothing we can do to save unwitting tourists on our beaches but if you're settling in for a session on the sunny Glenmore roof, swiftly avail yourself of these nifty little tubes. Responsible service of alcohol just got a whole lot more responsible.
On the flip-side of the meteorological coin, anyone who's been caught up there on a blowy evening can appreciate that Australia's dedication to al fresco boozing can be sorely tried by a determined storm. In an effort to make their biggest drawcard weatherproof, the Glenmore have added a canopy that can be extended or retracted depending on the forecast. There's something delicious about drinking outdoors in a thunderstorm while staying bone dry.
A nine-month refurbishment of the Glenmore saw the beloved façade of this historic Rocks pub boarded up, leaving the pale blue shirts of law and finance with fond memories of uproarious Anzac Day celebrations and Friday night beers to tide them over. Now the Glenny has proudly re-opened, giving us access to arguably the best harbour views in the city once more.
Gone are the old, chunky picnic benches on the roof, replaced by smaller tables and bright red enamel chairs that match the jolly lanterns bobbing overhead, just out of reach of the new gas heaters – Winter is coming and all that.
On the beer front they're keeping things low key. Aside from the mega brews there are your standard imports – Grolsch, Corona, Peroni, Pilsner Urquell – plus Vale Ale and Fat Yak for domestic craft beer fans.
Skip the Pan-American snacks and go for an old-school counter meal downstairs. The rooftop menu is a surprisingly exxy and fairly underwhelming grab-bag of tacos, hotdogs and Mexican-style corn on the cob while downstairs you can still get a good-bang-for-buck schnitzel or steak.
That's not to say downstairs hasn't been spruced up too. The toilets that were once a little too close to the bar for comfort have been turned into a nook for reclusive drinkers – no longer shall shy tipplers be relegated to the loos. The middle floor is now a warren of rooms that can be hired privately or occupied when you feel like a game of pool in more intimate surrounds.
The new-look Glenmore may have lost some of its old working-harbour flavour but at its core it is still a reliable old pub with a rooftop that’s hard to beat.