I never thought I’d ask to be served Passion Pop at a bar. And to think that I would enjoy it…Buckley’s chance. Dingo’s dares you to give it a burl. Where Collingwood and Australiana kitsch collide, it’s retro tuck-shop/teenage guilty pleasures with a modern inner-city Melbourne twist.
We looked on suspiciously as our barman topped up heaps of rum and passionfruit syrup with the Pop that my plus one had vowed never to drink again (following a series of unfortunate events when she turned eighteen). ‘She’ll be right’. The words of comfort were proffered as we sat down on kangaroo pelt-lined benches to a nostalgic trip back to the 80s.
The native flower centerpieces in jars made of Melbourne Bitter cans are just one of the many not-so-subtle touches at Smith Street’s new watering hole. Bright retro coloured walls, and plenty of posters of celebrities and products from yesteryear. Like the slapdash décor of many a sharehouse gone by, it feels both original and familiar.
While moving on to a Flaming Galah, a sherry (!) based cocktail, and a 4 Pines beer for my plus one, we were offered some matching nibbles. Cheese cubes and sliced Kabana, and naturally, Aussie Pies — with a twist. This one is a creation of Chef Louie Green from renowned Tofu Shop International, and is vegan. The tofu + saag curry version is particularly delicious. We had quite a few. These are staples of the snack menu, something to nibble on (along with barbecue Shapes!) while taking a pause from the dance floor. DJs spin vinyl late most nights.
Bring your mates, or make some new ones at Dingo’s. You’ll be stoked.
Christian G. is an international man of mystery, lover of books, cats and the performing arts; moonlighting as a finance professional by day.
310 Smith Street
Collingwood VIC 3065
Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of Milk Bottle Projects.
Image credit: Milk Bottle Projects – Giulia Morlando.