5 of the Best Sunday Pubs in Melbourne

Retire your trip advisor regrets. We’re covering the best Sunday pubs in Melbourne that locals ‘actually’ go to. Bone Apple Tit.

5 of the Best Sunday Pubs in Melbourne

A ‘Sunday Pub’, also known as a Sunday session. The sun is shining, the ale is cold and the scent of wood-fired pizza, cigarettes, and the eternal murmur of excited pub dwellers surges from the hospo, grimey, but oh so beautiful streets of Melbourne.

To be honest, it’s no wonder you’re looking for Sunday sessions. For us over 25, mid-week hangovers are consequence to large Saturday night outings. Gone are the days of quick recoveries, so, now we resort to smaller day sessions with a quick turnover, in bed by 8 pm, go hard or go home… pft, go hard, THEN go home.

 Here’s what we’ll be covering.

  • Best Pubs in Melbourne CBD
  • Best Pub Food in Melbourne


Best, Best, Best... give the people what they damn well want!

The Best Pubs in Melbourne CBD

This is a list purely based on our own taste. And, with an industry on the brink of collapse with Covid-19 running around like a headless chook, we encourage you to visit and indulge in the glory of all and every bar you can possibly visit. But for now, let’s look at our top picks for some of the best pubs in Melbourne CBD.

Naked for Satan

Sunday sessions are unfulfilled without a rooftop bar; as the Mandolorian would say - “this is the way...”

A city highrise sunset, an icy cold spritz in hand, and the infectious (poor choice of words) nature of billowing lofi beats underneath electric chatter from fellow Sunday warriors; it’s the vibe punters long for.

Naked for Satan is a multi-levelled bar, and after a couple of said spritzes, it’s easy to lose track of which level you’ve been roaming, so beware.

While bar hopping IS half the fun in Melbourne, it’s kind of redundant when the bar you’re at has 3 levels.

Each level has its own vibe, but in general, the decor has a copper speakeasy, industrial steampunk accent. It’s one of those places where you can sit at a table in silence and simply find joy in looking at new things around the rather large establishment.

The menu captures a modernistic spin on Spanish tapas, modified to suit a pint-sized Sunday session’s appetite. Sample and diversify, and the best thing is that tapas works with your appetite; try the Mussels sofrito with n'duja, and in an hour after a few more drinks get a charcuterie board, burger, or bar snack. It’s a bit of a whirlwind; time goes by here.

 Naked for Satan


Cherry Bar

Cherry Bar is somewhat of an institutional staple in the Melbourne rock and roll dive bar scene. There is an intimate and authentic cabaret-esk vibe to the establishment that captures the underground hospo scene of Melbourne all too well.

At the deep end of the year, they have ticketed Halloween events, live bands and quirky cabaret acts that transform most cliche ordinary outings into a night of mischief with a ‘what could possibly happen next’ mentality.

The cult following is extreme in a good way, but it’s testimony to the authenticity of the place. You can usually see the quality of a bar by the local hustle and bustle. If there is a solid local scene, the bar has nailed consistency.

So if you’re feeling dusty and need a pick me up, or quite the opposite, and you had a Saturday night in and you want a bit of an adventurous Sunday, definitely head to ACDC lane and lap up the vibes at Cherry Bar.


The Best Pub Food in Melbourne

Move over Hogs Breath; we’re touching on the best pub food in Melbourne!


The Garden State Hotel

The Garden State Hotel has nailed its setting in that it accommodates the eclectic mix of Melbournites that frequent the labyrinth-like roads of the inner city. It’s got three different bars, highlighting every possible niche that captains an individual’s drinking intentions.

Feel like a casual beer and a parmi? The Public Bar and Beer Garden is a quaint platform to do so. Maybe you’re having a few wines with the gals (or boys, don’t be like that). The Rose Garden has an epic wine selection and atmosphere. Going a little more decadent, the Garden Grill is a bit more delicate with a display of… grilled meats, raw fish, cheese platters, and regularly updated seasonal dishes.

 Altogether, a pretty all-round people pleaser. It’s funny because most places that bid for an overall demographic blur the lines and end up with unhappy patrons, but they’ve really banked on the multiple ‘occasion personalities’ of a single demographic. Nonetheless, a banger for a Sunday session… Check it out. 

 The Garden State Hotel

Howler Bar

Howler Bar is the quintessence of Melbourne. Give the people what they want; tacos, burgers, tequila, cocktails, cold ale, live music and staff and crowds that are there to have a good time.

There’s like... a proper stage there, so they get some pretty big acts coming through both Australian and international. So if you’re going to Howler, make sure that, if it’s a ticketed night, you’ve got one!

We were frothing on the Wagyu beef burger, American cheese, pickles and the Howler burger sauce. There’s something about chefs using premium products in an informal dish. But man does it sit well... unless you’re moshing… then not so much.

Book a table at Howler.

If you’re loving our list of best food and pubs in Melbourne for a Sunday session, and maybe you’re thinking of dining with a friend, workgroup, or lover, well, people have been using the Pub and Bar Gift Card to navigate around Melbourne. You can use it at your favourite watering hole or ones we’ve recommended. Take a look!

Welcome to Thornbury 

You kind of never experience the same ‘Welcome to Thornbury’ twice. They have a scheduled roster of different food trucks that pop up at their space weekly, which is sick. Like Howler, they’ve pretty much nailed that idyllic Melbourne rooftop bar feels that everyone so desperately craves on a heated Sunday afternoon.

The beer hall is kind of loud, but you don’t really notice because you’re too busy contributing to the levels. It’s only expected, though; it’s a popular bar, plus, Sunday sessions don’t really feel like a session if it’s quiet. We can link you to popular libraries to read at if you like? Anyway, a bit of Melbourne hustle is what you’ll find, and when they aren’t running their regular service, they quite frequently throw parties, especially in the festive spectrum of the year. Granted, things have been weird lately with Covid, but things are about to ramp up.

Thanks for reading our take on ‘The Best Sunday Pubs in Melbourne’. Even though you’ve put in the research, be flexible, explore and go with the pulsating energy that the city transpires. It’s an energy that can’t be calculated in an article, you just have to experience it yourself.

And if you’re taking someone out for their birthday check out the Pub and Bar Card, it’s a great gift because, if you’re invited, you get to share in the benefits!! Enjoy!


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