Summer in Sydney

Riley Street beer with the former brothel in the background
Riley Street beer with the former brothel in the background

Forresters is definitely one of my favourite pubs in Sydney.

It’s located on Riley Street for a start which is such a lovely, tree-lined street. Thankfully it’s also a street where you don’t find many cars. If you’re on Crown Street and traffic is at a standstill, you can always take a left turn over to Riley Street and get a good run through.

And for many years, the Touch of Class brothel operated across the road. So as you waited for a friend to arrive, you could always pass the time watching men – uncomfortably – making their way in and out of the brothel, hoping to avoid the gaze of those sitting in the pub opposite.

They introduced the first cheap steak in the area, as I recall. The pub, not the brothel. And they have a great comfortable space which is equally good in summer as winter, though I have a preference for summer.

Riley Street Sky
Riley Street Sky

And so when a friend called this afternoon asking if I felt like a beer after work, Forresters seemed like a pretty good choice.

“I’ll just go and ask one of the kids for a lighter”, she said at one point, noting the group of young men sitting next to us. “The kids”, I laughed in recognition.

As we reflected on being amongst the oldest in the pub, we settled down for a couple of hours of chatting, drinking, and eating their rather nice chips.

And we had a terrific table out on the footpath which, aside from the occasional visit by one of the many more colourful folk of Surry Hills, meant we escaped the noise of the pub, and had a great view of the street.

“You’ve gotta take a photo of that”, she said, as we looked up at the lovely sky, the trees, the moon.

You gotta love summer in Sydney.

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