Melbourne's John Curtain Hotel is an unassuming building in the heart of the swinging district of Carlton, but it's a heavyweight venue when it comes to the live music scene. In some ways, the John Curtain has always been a serious place.
When it was strictly a public house, it attracted politicians, including a former prime minister, and union leaders who discussed the big issues of the day over a schooner or two.
When it turned its attention to providing the best in local live music it did so with gusto. The band room is purpose designed to guarantee that no matter where patrons are standing there is an unrestricted view of the stage.
The Curtin is a coveted spot for Australian and international bands on the rise looking for an authentic space to launch an album or have an intimate concert with their most devoted fans.
It books bands of all genres. Recent gigs included country music duo, Birdcloud from Nashville, Melbourne's own "indie-noir" band Broads and indie-rock band Dumb Punts.
The Curtain hosts a "pop up" restaurant that provides sustenance for partygoers who want something quick and delicious to eat. So depending on the time of your visit you could be treated to a dramatically different menu from previous experiences.
At the time of this writing, it was Sonny’s Fried Chicken that had taken up residence at the John Curtin Hotel. Sonny’s Fried Chicken serves up delicious burgers and crispy fried chicken that has been brined for 24hrs before being pressure cooked.
But if American style food isn't your thing the curtain has restaurants serving delicious Asian and European fare within walking distance of its door.