Small bars are enjoying a moment across the Tasman, generally, but the move to downsize spaces at the Darlinghurst end of Oxford Street, Sydney isn’t just a case of following a trend. One can easily enough determine that the area is introducing smaller spots to be done with rowdy nightlife and encourage a more sophisticated type of social scene.
Foley Lane is one of the fresh new entrants, serving a selection of smart Tapas in a part bar-part restaurant setting. Its exactly as intended: intimate, stylish and yet still casual enough to pop in for a mid-week tipple. The owners have spent time in Spain and Europe and wanted the Tapas experience to be represented in an honest and understated sense, the way they had encountered it on their travels.
Sydney-based Edge Design Studio took on the interiors, maximising the corner cubby space with side openings onto Foley Street and the adjacent pedestrian-only laneway of Bourke Street. Though the menu is adamantly Spanish, the interior fitout responds to a simple brief for lived-in appeal through the use of hand-made wall tiles, recycled timbers, antique leathers and crafted glass pendant lights. Residing on the ground floor of an Art Deco apartment block with an ocean-liner frontage has also, to an extent, dictated the restaurant’s aesthetic. Glossy white tiles and a winding zinc counter mimic the character and ornamental curves of the architectural era.
With open kitchen and bar, high stools and warm lighting, Foley Lane is a lively, approachable venue with a simple, artisanal quality. According to popular opinion, it also offers some of the best Tapas in town.