REVIEW: Mojo’s Record Bar

Originally published May 21st 2015

I have always preferred bars to nightclubs and so since I turned 18 I have slowly been crossing Sydney’s top bars off of my list. A recent Saturday night led me to Mojo Record Bar located on the corner of York and King Street in Wynyard. It’s about a 5-minute walk from the station, which is always something that is important when drinking alcohol for a plan B.

If you aren’t actively looking out for it, you may miss it, the security guard out the front the only indication that it’s more than a doorway. The entrance hallway is coated with concert posters, indie bands like The Vaccines deemed cool enough to grace the walls.

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The drinks

The front half of the venue is a record store, which is then played by the DJ throughout the night, the music a mix of old, and new blending enough so the regular hipster turn out can jump around and dance without feeling ridiculous. Unfortunately, we missed the blues band that plays every Saturday night between 6:30 and 8:30, Jesse ‘n James, but it would definitely be something that interests me enough to go back for.
The crowd isn’t limited to hipsters, though. There was the under 25 crowd, business people and people in their 50s all meeting for drinks and chatting over the music. I think this is important, as I didn’t feel out of place being there. It was a really welcoming vibe.

The dimly lit venue is a little tiny, but that’s typical for any bar. Holding a conversation isn’t too hard, the occasional “what?” when the record is a little too loud. The service is excellent, the bartenders charming and quick in the way they dance around the bar in order to concoct the perfect drink. Its like watching art and science combine, the effort it takes in order to make the drink in the right way and make it look good at the same time.

Cost wise, it’s good for a few drinks but not to spend the whole evening particularly for students. Prices range from $9-$100, depending on whether you’d prefer a glass or a bottle of wine.

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whiskey sour

My friends and I tried a series of cocktails; none of us particularly keen on wine and beer. I had a whiskey sour, which was super sweet, something always good in a cocktail. There is the option to have a New York Sour, which is spiked with wine. My friends tried the Midori Vice and an East Side, both beautifully presented and strong enough that it didn’t taste like alcohol but you could feel the effects.

The second time round, the bartender asked what kind of spirit I liked and made a drink based on that. He did tell me the name several times, but due to the loud rock song playing, I couldn’t hear him. The end result was absolutely fantastic, though. I think that is cool that he did that, as I was a little clueless as to what I wanted. Asking what spirit I preferred and then basing a drink around that shows that the bartenders and staff care about your experience and want to make it as enjoyable as possible.

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The bartender’s choice

Mojo Record Bar is definitely a place I would like to visit during the day, when the record store part is still open, before spending the night chilling to the smooth atmosphere. It’s a special place that you can’t visit every week as it would probably lose it’s wonder, but it is definitely a place to see.

Opinions expressed are the author’s own.

Opinions expressed are the author’s own.

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