Tucano’s: Sydney’s Newest ‘Modern Tiki’ Bar in Surry Hills

Bars, Drink, Sydney / 22 August 2023

Surry Hills’ vibrant bar scene welcomes Tucano’s, brought to you by the creative minds behind The Roosevelt in Potts Point.

The charming neighbourhood of Surry Hills is home to some of our favourite venues including Rosie Cambell’s, Armorica, and Bar Copains. Adding to the repertoire is the new bar Tucano’s, which embraces a unique concept known as Modern Tiki, blending tropical flavours with an unexpected aperitivo twist.

General Manager Steve Davis, formerly of Opera Bar, expresses his excitement, stating, “We’re thrilled to be open and showcasing our version of Modern Tiki. The drinks are tropical but not heavy, with the inclusion of amaros and vermouths in place of your typical tropical fruit juices. They’re lighter, fizzier, and more aromatic. It’s Tiki, but not as you know it.”

The Modern Tiki theme extends across both the food and cocktail menus. Signature drinks like ‘Bird of Paradise’ feature tequila, apricot, mango, lime, and chilli-infused braulio, while the layered ‘Boogie Wonderland’ slushie intertwines rum-based dragonfruit with pineapple, coconut, and fino sherry blend, crowned with blue curacao ‘caviar’. Lighter spritzier options grace the menu through dedicated cocktail taps, with the crowd-pleaser ‘Miami Peach’ fusing rum, cognac, averna, peach, lemon, wine, and fizz in a blazing disco ball presentation.

Chef Naomi Lowry, hailing from esteemed establishments like Biota, Pilu, and ByFassnidge, spearheads the culinary offering. The menu is designed for sharing, featuring modern interpretations of Mediterranean delights with a tropical twist. The experience commences with the house bar snack and spicy pineapple jerky, setting the tone for a memorable meal.

From Hiramasa kingfish bruschetta to intercostal skewers, every plate embodies a fusion of cultures and flavours. Larger plates embrace the likes of slow-cooked beef short rib luau and a ‘sweet and sour’ Borrowdale pork cutlet with pineapple and pepper agrodolce. The dessert selection doesn’t disappoint either, featuring a Mai Tai rhum baba with salted mascarpone and passionfruit, alongside a pineapple lamington arctic roll with Rivareno Gelato fior di panna.

The venue’s transformation pays homage to its location just off Crown Street. Once home to Cafe Lounge, Tucano’s has evolved into a captivating space, incorporating a nod to live performance venues with live entertainment throughout the week. Studio Barbara’s interior design draws inspiration from the bar’s namesake, the tropical bird. The four distinct spaces within Tucano’s showcase various atmospheres, from wavy banquette seating to a mirror-laden room evoking the allure of a disco ball. A light-filled rear courtyard features tiled banquette seating and a retro-style distressed mural, adding character to the former smoker’s quarters.

Tucano’s is open Wednesday through to Monday from 5pm – 12am. Find out more here.