Upstairs from Burke & Wills, The Manhattan Cricket Club has an old-world, speakeasy-esque vibe, reminiscent of Colonial-era gentlemen’s clubs. A membership club open to the public, inspired by Australian cricket clubs from the turn of the century, reservations are only available to members; non-members may access on a walk-in basis. They have a list of House Rules that they’d like you to adhere to, including a dress code. But the Manhattan Cricket Club just manages not to take itself too seriously, with that subtle nod to the tongue-in-cheek that Australians are so good at.
The space itself is small but well designed, with the restored apartment it occupies giving you the feeling of having a drink in someone’s fancy living room. In fact, it’s the perfect spot for a cozy cocktail on a cold winter’s eve. Their house cocktails are eclectic and heavy on the vodka Salt And Pepper (Boyd & Blair Potato Vodka, Garden Tomato Essence, Smoked Black Pepper & White Truffle Mist), but they are also masters of the classics. I enjoyed one of the best Boulevardiers I’ve ever had here. The A Drink In The Hand Is Worth Two In The Bush (Honey bush-Infused Virgil Kane High Rye Bourbon. Cappelletti Aperitivo, Dolin Rouge, Orange Bitters) is barrel aged, resulting in a harmonious mellowing of flavors. —Julia Ritz Tiffoli