New bar from team behind Canberra’s AKIBA


Canberra bar and restaurant, AKIBA, has had a good year: opening last year, they’ve picked up awards nationally (and won the ACT Bar of the Year award at the 2015 Bartender Magazine Australian Bar Awards) and, having just re-secured the services of the 2015 Bartender of the Year, Lee Potter Cavanagh in a group GM role, are set to open a new bar next year.

“I’ll be mostly focused at AKIBA for the next six months, rotovapping angel’s tears and all that, [and] during that time we’ll also be working on a new bar for opening mid-2016,” Potter Cavanagh said.

Though they’re keeping tight-lipped about the details of the new bar for the moment, Potter Cavanagh said the bar will be across the road from AKIBA.

“We’re taking over the Tongue & Groove site across the Rd from AKIBA. Hopefully Bunda St will become the number one hospo strip for the Bezza,” he said.


“We’re currently working with the architect we used for AKIBA, Adam Deitrick, to work out what we can fit,”Potter Cavanagh said. “We’re close but the concept still needs a little work. Definitely a bar first and restaurant second, it will have an old school long bar, hopefully with a rounded corner so that we can show off one bartender each night as they will be almost surrounded by customers at the bar. I like the sound of 270 degrees of stools.”

In terms of the direction of the drinks, the Canberra region will be a focus point, with “simple, fast and fresh cocktails.”

“We haven’t decided if it’ll be wine focused or beer focused yet,” he said. “Whichever we run with it’ll be very parochial with the best of the Canberra region and broader NSW with sprinklings of the rest of Australia and the world to round it out.”

Expect to see the new bar open in mid-2016.

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