Pilgrim Bar cocktail Advent calendar

Pilgrim Bar advertised a cocktail Advent Calendar in What’s on Melbourne. I was intrigued to do something different for the lead up to the Christmas season. So…

Day One 

Drinks on the Yarra River with the Melbourne Arts Centre Spire and Hamer Hall in the background.

The cocktail was refreshing on such a ridiculously hot day. I like gin, I enjoy eating grapefruit for breakfast. Salted grapefruit – I am not so sure. I decided to try it because there’s nothing else on the menu that appealed to my adventurous nature and I am here for the Advent Cocktails which is not happening. Yes, it was advertised in a magazine but not on their website and yes, I did follow up by email and was assured it was on.


I chose olives from the nibbles menu. The olives are plump and juicy and weirdly fresh. I say weirdly fresh because they have not been plucked straight off a tree and presented to me. They’ve undergone whatever processes that need to be done to make them edible and they are so good. Good selection of olives. Each one I devour has the right kind of salty tartiness about it. I appreciate being given a pip bowl. I surprise myself by neglecting my cocktail and eating half the bowl of olives.

My cocktail is Poor Toms gin spritz with salted grapefruit. Yuuuuuuuuuum! It is so refreshing and easy to drink, i could have downed it in one. It is a medium sized cocktail served with ice, decorated with a sprig of rosemary and a pink grapefruit segment. It is at first sweet then the pleasantly salty and sour grapefruit hits you at the back of your tongue. The burn of the gin is last and goes smoothly down and down… It’s a pleasant gin. Made in New South Wales, the juniper and cardamom shine through.

Verdict: I would have it again, immediately.

Got things to do so I shan’t.

Who knows if I will be back at Pilgrim Bar for Day Two. If their cocktail Advent Calendar is not on, I will do an iconic places of Melbourne Advent Calendar. I visited Federation Square (affectionally called Fed Sq. Australian abbreviate everything), passed by The Shrine of Remembrance on my way to St Kilda. St Kilda is a suburb and a half. Situated on the Victorian coast, most tourists especially backpackers visit at least once. Get a tattoo, walk along the promenade, visit the theatre, go clubbing at the Espy at night or dine during the day, get your water sports fix or end up at Luna Park and go on a rollercoaster.

Fed Sq is opposite Flinders Street Train Station and is quite festive.





In this picture, top left, you can just make out the famous Fed Sq triangles.





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