Johnny Fontane’s bar to open in Darlinghurst [gallery]
Darlinghurst’s Stanley St. will get a new bar in early March, with Johnny Fontane’s set to open. The venue takes inspiration from its namesake – the swing singer, film actor and godson of mob boss Vito Corleone, Johnny Fontane – paying homage to his heritage and ancestral homeland, Sicily.
“If Vito Corleone, Ella Fitzgerald and Biggie Smalls were to meet for a smoke and a cocktail, Johnny Fontane’s would be the place,” said co-founder Thomas Derricott. “Johnny Fontane’s will make people feel as if they could bump into Sinatra at the bar, or catch a glimpse of Mafiosi talking business upstairs.”
Derricott, who also co-founded Catmosphere Cat Caf in Sydney, has partnered with The Bear Bar’s Andy Curtis to develop Johnny Fontane’s, which will serve Chicago deep dish pizzas, reimagined by executive chef Cy Gwynne (ex-Longrain and Caf Sydney). Also on the menu are pasta, antipasto, arancini balls, cannoli and gelato.
Signature cocktails based on Italian liquors and modern twists on classics like the martini and negroni feature on the drinks list, alongside wine and craft beers from Italy and the US.
The venue’s interior was designed by stylist Belinda Cendron and features for distinct spaces: a Rat Pack/swing-themed downstairs bar; a Sicilian-style courtyard with a large central citrus tree and lush vines (sourced from the film set of The Great Gatsby); a “gangster lounge” for drinking and dining on the first floor; and the cigar deck with a retro-resort Cuban vibe, where guests can smoke Cuban cigars, which will be sold at the bar.
Johnny Fontane’s will open Tuesdays–Thursdays from 4pm to midnight, and Friday–Saturday from 12pm to midnight.