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Penny Blue and Money Order Office

Out On a School Night

Regular readers of this site (both of you) may be curious to know, what the most popular post has been during My City Melbourne’s short existence.

Was it learning how to meet Melbourne Cup winners at Living Legends Paddock or the Immigration Museum where we can all trace our history?  Maybe it was the ‘what’s on’ guides with the host of cultural events for people to attend.

Nope, as it turns out, beer has trumped everything. De Ja Vu Bar and Lounge with its rotating taps of craft brews has been clicked on more than anything else on the site. With that in mind and a strong desire to ‘give the people what they want’, I headed to Penny Blue, to discover another bar claiming to be ‘Melbourne’s premier craft beer bar’

To the best of my knowledge, this is the only bar in Melbourne to be named after a postage stamp (see right)penny blue stamp and it certainly fits the staunch criteria of CBD trendiness , being located down an alley way and off a little street (Driver Lane off Little Bourke).

While the service can be a little hit and miss, they do come through with the goods when it comes to the beer. They have 100+ mostly local beers to choose from, which would certainly put them in the mix to be classed as Melbourne’s number one, providing you don’t put too much weighting on tap beer (this place only had one tap on the day I went).

Friday nights has a house jazz band which certainly adds to the ambience of the place, however it also adds to the patronage and for that reason you may be better off on a Wednesday or Thursday where it has a more relaxed feel about it.

To really make it a night to remember, try combining it with the Money Order Office,  it’s sister venue located downstairs.

The MOO as it is casually known by its owners has an amazing sense of history having been an office of enemy debts, the public trustee, custodian of expropriated property & the parliamentary offices of two former prime ministers.

Inside Penny Blue Photo from http://gaynoralder.com

Inside Penny Blue
Photo from http://gaynoralder.com

The building can now add ‘one of Melbourne’s finest tapas bars’ to that list of achievements. Inside it has the appearance of a vintage wine seller and the ambience of a fine dining experience.

However the prices are extremely reasonable and it is a contender for having the best pork chop in town (not to be confused with the biggest pork chop in town).

For a great mid-week dinner party, get a few people together and make it Penny Blue for a few pre dinner beers and then MOO for some tapas and wine ( I will let you decide whether you go back to Penny Blue for a night cap).

If you are looking to entertain visitors from interstate or overseas this is not a bad choice as it certainly ticks many of the boxes required for a trademark  Melbourne experience. Hidden venues, laneways, craft beer, tapas style eating, great wine, architecture and local history. What more could you want?

Penny Blue on Urbanspoon
Money Order Office on Urbanspoon

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