Bars and Nightclubs
Melbourne South, Melbourne

The Malvern Hotel

Cnr Glenferrie and Malvern Roads, Toorak
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The Malvern Hotel was built in 1853 and is the oldest hotel in the Malvern district. In August 2009, the next chapter in our history began when Michael & Susan Burke and Ken Price took over ownership of the hotel. We pride ourselves on excellence in food, beverage and service and we look forward to welcoming you for your next meal, drink or function.

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Review of The Malvern Hotel

Review by Tintin Rahman

“This bar is not for teenagers,” says Wayne, the blonde, rugged-looking manager of The Malvern Hotel bar. No offence to Generation Y, but I hope it stays that way (the crowd, I mean). The Malvern Hotel, an unassuming, two-storey, beige-coloured building opposite the Malvern Shell station houses a crowd that is very much characteristic of its suburb – people in their 40s and 50s having a drink in twos and threes, with a sprinkling of twentysomethings. Yes, everybody is having a drink, but nobody is rowdy, although that could be because it is only 7.45pm on a Tuesday. But I cannot imagine this crowd creating a noise above a certain decibel level or smashing beer bottles (it just doesn’t happen in Malvern).

The Malvern Hotel is too decent for that. Built in 1853, it is the oldest hotel in Malvern, and proud of its history too. A small sign clearly displays its accolades just beside the main door. The bar itself consists of square, rectangle and round wooden tables and beige columns, and seems to extend seamlessly from the restaurant (which I hear is excellent). There is an unused fireplace to the left, opposite the bar. Nothing is loud. The only quirkiness in the joint comes from 5 or 6 A4-sized vintage posters mounted on the walls. Apparently, these anomalies accompanied a takeover in 2009. Why did the hotel switch hands?

“The previous owners were getting too old,” says Wayne, who has worked there for 13 years. The hotel is 160 years old. While there are a couple of television screens, they are small and discreetly placed. The point of going there is to actually have a conversation, not be distracted by loud décor or a game of footy. And so, while the bartenders walk around in black shirts, slacks and aprons, all-business, delivering drinks, salads and wedges to the bar patrons, the latter create their own atmosphere, aided by relaxing jazz and ’80s music.

I was there for a random ‘singles’ meeting. Each of the four complete strangers had something different. If you are really cheap, you can get a glass of gleaming, golden apple cider or a lemon lime bitters for $4. If you feel adventurous, you can get a Campari and soda for about $7. Or, if you feel like getting a classic wine, for which The Malvern Hotel is known for, you can get a good one for anywhere between $8 to $15. Although I was happy with my Cabenet Merlot, I couldn’t help noticing how three women in a corner were having the same rosy pink wine. It was probably the Foxeys Hangout Rose 2012, or ‘Rose’ for short, light wine that’s perfect for summer (as one of my companions said). The wine list from the website is ten pages long, so there’s plenty of variety.

To summarise, if you are ever in Malvern, do stop by The Malvern Hotel. This much-decorated restaurant and bar is the best thing on the northern side of Glenferrie Road.

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