The newest venue to open on the vibrant Vardon Avenue is offering something different to a street already filled with wine, coffee, beer and whisky; The William Bligh specialises in a variety of rums, as well as offering gourmet platters and panini late into the evening.
The name itself is a cheeky nod to long-gone naval officer, William Bligh, who tried to stop the rum trade in the early 1800s.
It’s a cosy little spot, divided into two section by a mezzanine holding three large tables. The venue is dimly lit with yellow light, with walls lined with antique mirrors and lists of mutineers from William Bligh’s ship, giving it a real caribbean-rustic feel. There’s also outside seating for those who prefer, warmed by a gas heater and with loads of blankets to snuggle up in.
Our favourite cocktail was the Old Fashioned, a spirit-forward drink made with the perfect balance of sugar, bitters and rum, served over ice and garnished with a flamed orange peel. A fun, fruity drink alternative would be the Pineapple Mojito, a twist on the classic made by using rum and pineapple juice.
We were also able to try three of the crew member’s favourite rums: Captain Bligh XO, Brinley Gold Shipwreck Spiced Rum and Ratu Signature Premium Rum Liqueur. The Captain Bligh is aged in ex-bourbon barrels, giving it a rich, oaky flavour. The Shipwreck, our favourite, was served with a sprig of rosemary and was bursting with sweet spices like cinnamon, making it far too easy to drink. The Ratu Liqueur was served with a biscotti, and is comparable to Frangelico in its candy sweetness.
Not just for the night owls, The William Bligh is open from 8am Tuesday through to Friday, serving coffee and the aforementioned food for those wanting a nook to haunt during the day. On weekends you can find them open from 12, and they’ll stay open each night until around 1am.