Called to the Bar : Mr Wolf says "It's drinking time"

Wednesday, 19 June and I heard the call of the bar, all the way from Wolfe Lane.

And what else would you name a bar situated in Wolfe Lane but Wolfe Lane? (Cheeky Sparrow is the answer, as that’s the bar/cafe which is almost next door; I guess I’ll go there some other time.)

I was worried I would have trouble finding Wolfe Lane as I imagined getting lost in twisting back alleys trying to locate it. Thankfully it was quite straightforward. I approached it by coming down the lane from Murray Street, which took me past Cheeky Sparrow (yep, definitely some other time). There is another lane leading to the bar from King Street. Wolfe Lane, the bar, sits right where these two lanes intersect.

The doorway is small but the interior is large and on the night I arrived it was not too full. I was able to bag some comfy couches close to the bar and near the stunning artwork that takes up one whole wall.

Some of the impressive artwork that features real bark

A word about these retro couches and chairs. What op shops do hipsters shop at to score such chairs? Because I never come across old furniture like this when I go to Salvos' stores. I just see the 80s throwaways all rattan and chrome or shapeless puffy couches. But I digress; where was I? That’s right; I was getting a drink.

Grandma's house was well known for its couches

I ordered a Fat Yak and some olives. It used to be that I always ordered olives back in my UWA wine bar days as they seem to be a perennial mainstay of wine bar food. Nearly every bar has them so they offer an efficient method of comparing one bar to another. The olives here at Wolfe Lane were plentiful but fairly standard. However points are added for including a bowl for the pips and toothpicks for sharing.

Fat Yak, fat olives, slim toothpicks

Joining me in this law librarian get together was M from UWA along with her husband. I had only met M a few times previously so this was a good chance to get to know her and her husband better. I did the expected thing and asked her lots of questions about Canada which is where they recently moved from. In my defence all I know of Canada I gleaned from watching You Can’t Do That On Television and reading Alpha Flight comics. I do know that Wolverine is Canadian though. They really should emphasise that more.

Wolfe Lane was quiet the day we were there, which suited us fine for a relaxed evening of talking over a slow drink. Wednesdays are the first night of the week that Wolfe Lane is open which may explain the small turnout. I am certain the conditions would be different on a Thursday.

Oh what a big bar you have

The music was at the right level to allow for comfortable conversing. The lighting was fine letting you see who you were talking to and also find the olives. Yet someone in charge must have thought otherwise. On two occasions the lights dimmed and then flickered before returning to their initial brightness. I guess it goes to show you shouldn’t mess with a winning formula. And on the right night Wolfe Lane certainly does have a winning formula. Successfully hidden right in the middle of the city Wolfe Lane enables you to get away from the office without having to actually go too far. The night I was there I had a great time with some new friends amidst a comfortable setting.

I can see I like it here

Justin Booker


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