Explore Ipswich’s Cocktail culture

In the interests of research, why not undertake your own cocktail crawl in the Ipswich CBD...
21 Apr 2022
Alli Grant, Writer, blogger, marketer and speaker

It has been said that the greatest adventures happen after cocktails. I would have to agree.

But why wait for a special occasion to enjoy an aperitif (or two)? Especially if you happen to be visiting Ipswich, a destination becoming increasingly well-known for its burgeoning café and restaurant culture.

As it turns out, the Ipswich CBD, from the Top of Town to the new Nicholas Street Precinct, over to 88 Limestone, and across the railway bridge to Darling Street, is gaining a reputation for its cocktail culture.

A cocktail crawl in the heart of historic Ipswich? Yes please! A word from the wise – leave the car at your hotel or B&B or bring a designated driver. You won’t want to stop at just one.

We recently created our own little cocktail crawl, all in the name of research, and here are some of our top picks.

The Rusty Nail (Nicholas Street Precinct)

A Lychee Lani and a classic Margarita at The Rusty Nail Bar

Next on our little cocktail crawl was The Rusty Nail, one of the newest additions to the local bar scene, with a laidback feel and tasty tapas menu. I have a thing for lychee anything, so I simply had to order the cocktail of the week, the Lychee Lani. We also couldn’t go past a classic Margarita. Who can? Their cocktail menu isn’t overly extensive, but they nail it (pun intended).

Bakehouse Steakhouse (Cnr Darling and West Streets)


The Bakehouse, as she’s affectionately known, knows how to deliver a good cocktail. The list is substantial, boasting old faithfuls and new favourites, and you can enjoy your drink seated inside, at the bar, or in the courtyard.

Predictably, I ordered a Lychee Martini (heaven), while my cocktail drinking buddy went for something a little spicier – a Chilli Margarita. Hot! He said it packed the perfect punch. Said friend may or may not have followed it up with Classic Martini (two olives, of course).

Bakehouse Steakhouse classic martini

While these are some of our favourite cocktail hangs, don’t miss:

–          The Retro Diner – for the biggest menu of retro cocktails (including alcoholic milkshakes) you ever did see

–          The Pumpyard Bar and Brewery – for cocktails by the jug to share with your friends

–          Fourthchild Cafe, Bar and Restaurant – for a selection of your old favourites, including a few after dinner options


Images: Ben Hayward

*Note: we also hear that The Cottage Restaurant makes a fantastic espresso martini…

Alli Grant Writer, blogger, marketer and speaker
Alli, a prodigal daughter of Ipswich who returned after 20 years away, is passionate about exploring her city and sharing its secrets. A writer, blogger, marketer, and speaker, Alli is half of local digital marketing and communications agency www.incahootsco.com.au.

Things to do

View more things to do

Tell your story

Got something special you’d love to see highlighted via Discover Ipswich? A new attraction, perhaps, or a restaurant or a venture that people are travelling for? Share your story with us so we can share it to the world!

Send Email