Review: The Lobby at The Lyall, South Yarra

Bars, Eat, Melbourne, Summer Guide / 20 November 2020

Time passes easily on the streets of South Yarra’s latest pop-up, The Lobby at The Lyall Hotel and Spa.

Nailing the perfect balance of European hotel and casual dining space, The Lobby joins the likes of London’s The Ned or Manhattan’s The NoMad as a must-visit destination this summer.

The Lyall suffered COVID-19 shutdown like the rest of the state, however, during this time hoteliers Rowina and Peter Thomas brought in daughter Arielle to breathe new life into the hotel.

During that memorable window of opportunity back in June, The Lobby opened in new hands with modern energy loved by locals.

Lockdown returned, however, and Arielle worked her magic and during this time. She created bottled cocktails that were delivered via UberEats to Melburnians, luring a packed bar upon re-opening on November 5th, 2020.

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Arielle Thomas with the Cucinetta team; Giacomo Pietrantuono and Omar El Deek.

This revamped kid on the block delivers a relaxed hotel bar dining. When perched on the tree-lined street, you’ll be surrounded by Australian natives and twinkling fairy lights, enjoying a chilled alfresco vibe. If you choose to venture inside, expect a softly lit and welcoming space.

Just a stone’s throw away, local friends Cucinetta have teamed up with The Lyall to provide delicious bites throughout the November. Meet The Lobby, the summer pop-up bar at the street level of The Lyall Hotel and Spa in South Yarra.

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The food lends itself to long slow meals and stars Italian favourites like antipasti, lightly fried calamari, and tiramisu. The kitchen keeps it simple with margarita pizza, but for those more peckish the pulled pork burger will do the trick. However, the mushroom arancini is the real hero, included in the antipasti if you want to cover all bases.

Nonetheless, the cocktails should be your first port of call, with a fruity Toorak Hold Up hitting the mark on freshness without being overly sweet, while a Bloom spritz with a strawberry vermouth base and Prosecco finish are perfect for those hot summer nights. If margaritas are up your alley, try the Watermelon Tommy featuring a basil twist.

Lobby-the-Lyall-cocktail

The wine list is curated with South Yarra’s clientele in mind and Melbourne’s erratic weather, leaving guests with a New Zealand cool-climate pinot noir, French rose and Italian style whites. A safe-bet riesling from the coveted Clare Valley gives you just the right variety.

As Melbourne picks up momentum, The Lobby at The Lyall should be your next stop for a fun, European summer feel. Hurry, it won’t be a hidden gem for much longer.

Find The Lobby at The Lyall Hotel (16 Murphy Street, South Yarra) this summer. Open Friday and Saturday nights 5pm til late until November 28th. Find out more here

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