Cantina OK!, an intimate mezcal bar brings a unique small bar concept to the heart of Sydney’s CBD.
Cantina OK!, the third venue from the owners of Tio’s Cerveceria and The Cliff Dive has been 18 months in the making. The intimate 20 pax venue is located in Council Place, down a short and narrow alleyway off Clarence Street in Sydney’s CBD. Blink and you may miss it, unless your friendly bartender in the distance spots you and waves you in. Don’t let the grungy exterior be a deterrent. Behind that façade lies what is set to become one of Sydney’s most popular bars.
Cantina OK! is a ‘Mezcal Mecca’ with a bright and colourful interior that transports you to a happy place. The bar top has been built from the wood of one tree, artful ceramics were custom designed by an artist, and seasonal liqueurs such as cassis and green walnut are quietly macerating in glass jars. A Nepalese ice machine in safety yellow sits in the centre of the bar. A middle column on the back bar displays a rare mezcal collection brought back from the team’s last trip to Mexico.
The opening cocktail menu features four cocktails, and one weekly special handwritten on a coaster such as the Raspberry Daiquiri. There’s a Margarita OK! which combines tequila and mezcal with lime juice and citrus oil served over shaved ice, the Sour OK! with tequila, chamomile and pineapple and egg whites, the Fizz OK! with tequila, horchata and bubbles and the OK! Old Fashioned with anejo, mezcal, 5 spice syrup and citrus zest.
The physical menu is a booklet to be admired and studied, and was designed to be as much an experience as a tool. It features photographs taken by the team in Mexico on medium format film, locations they visited and mezcal producers. Concise descriptions of the agave spirits (such as Pit Toast, Shredder, Pine wood Ferment, Copper Stills with Insulator) educate at a glance and assist in making informed decisions. Look for the rare and unusual mezcal such as Mexicano and Sierra Negra wild agave distilled in 1990 and aged in glass.
Cantina OK! is open 7 days a week from 4pm to 2 am.
Click through the following pages to view images of the venue and a selection of the cocktails.