The best bars to drink gin at in Brisbane

It’s fun, it’s fresh and it’s experimental – as far as spirits go, gin is having its moment in the sun right now. Jump aboard the gin train with us as we explore where to sip, swirl and savour the botanical clear spirit.

Proud Henry Wine Bar & Ginoteca, Fortitude Valley

Henry is a stuffed peacock who sits high above the bar. He’s guarding more than 100 bottles of gin from all around the world, stacked up high in Brisbane’s first ‘ginoteca’. The menu here pairs each gin with a Fever Tree tonic water and garnish.

Dutch Courage Officer’s Mess, Fortitude Valley

Straight to the source, DCOM has put the focus on gin since way back when they opened in 2014 – which was before gin was super trendy. Ask the staff to help pick out something special, or browse the picture book cocktail menu – complete with illustrations. The Hendrick’s Bathtub looks fun.

Humpybong, Stafford

Just north of the city, Brisbane’s first and only artisan gin distiller lives in an unlikely location. By morning Humpybong is a roaring café in industrial Stafford, but from Thursday to Sunday the roller door stays up and the backstreet nook become a neighbourhood bar where you can taste the Humpybong Distillery’s own gin.

John Mills Himself, Brisbane City

John Mills Himself

Choose your poison based on its "drink miles". Cute laneway bar JMH stocks only craft Australian spirits and local mixers. With ingredients such as pink grapefruit and rosemary syrup and lilli pilli gin on hand, this is the paddock-to-plate equivalent of drinking.

BOSC, West End

The name stands for Bar Of Social Conscience, but as they quickly realised – it can mean a bunch of things. Bar Of Specialty gin Cocktails, for example. Grab a board game and order a gin – all the usual and the unusual Australian suspects are here.

The Bowery, Fortitude Valley

There’s no Brisbane cocktail bar more classic than The Bowery, and its menu reads more like a novel. In the cooler months request a Gin Blazer – gin cucumber syrup, white cacao, celery bitters and habanero salt are set on fire, served to you hot.

Canvas, Woolloongabba

Canvas

Take to the skies with your own gin flight. This Woolloongabba speakeasy is best known for its cocktails, but it also offers flights of four spirits for $25. Consider it an education as you line up Melbourne Gin Company, Bols Genever, Hayman’s Old Tom and Monkey gin.

Maker, South Brisbane

Slide into Brisbane’s smallest cocktail bar. With dark interiors except for a strikingly lit 7.5m long brass bar, this specialty spot has only about a dozen seats. The cocktail list changes monthly, or request

Seymour’s Cocktails & Oysters, Caxton Street

Peel back the red velvet curtains to reveal a slice of New Orleans circa 1910. Keep it classic and order Ramos Gin Fizz. Invented in 1888 at the Imperial Cabinet Saloon, this cocktail is a bubbly mix of gin, orange blossom, vanilla, lemon, lime cream and egg whites. 

The Colonial Bar, Brisbane City

What’s that? The sound of the drinks trolley rolling towards you? Yes, head upstairs to The Colonial Bar within the Port Office Hotel for The Thursday Club (surprise, its only on Thursdays) to soak in the vibes from yesteryear. An electro swing band will keep the vibe alive while you sip gin cocktails from your wicker chair.

Bar Pacino, Brisbane City

The riverside bar’s incredible views clearly call for Nutella shots. But, if it’s gin you’re after, gin they have. Try the highly recommended Figa, a gin and elderflower cocktail with fresh lemon and mint leaves.

Savile Row, Fortitude Valley

Enter through an orange door, slide through a silk black curtain and look up to a gleaming wall of booze. This Fortitude Valley speakeasy doesn’t do spirits by halves, with more than 750 bottles resting on its back bar.  

Emporium Cocktail Bar, Fortitude Valley

Yes, the foyer and bar at Emporium might to be to everyone’s tastes – but the cocktails from the bar will be. The Bee’s Knee’s cocktail mixes gin with honey from the hotel’s rooftop, crème de violette and smoked lavender for something different.

Stoke Bar, South Bank

Stoke Bar Winter Cocktails

As close to the river as you get without swimming in it, Stoke Bar changes its menu seasonally. The Lavender Lime Breeze is a delicate mix of gin, lillet blanc and lime with a creamy, sweet lavender and violet foam to caps off this delicious drink.

The APO, Fortitude Valley

Good morning! Well, not really – we're not here to encourage drinking before noon but we're also not your parents. The APO do a Breakfast Martini complete with orange marmalade. Gin, cointreau and lemon are the main ingredients.

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