When Clever Little Tailor owners Crispian Fielke, Josh Baker and Dana Whyte sat down with Xtra Shiny Design’s Adam Johnson to discuss what kind of place they wanted this Adelaide watering hole to be, a simple vision was formed which shaped the entire project. They were appealing to “adults that know and enjoy quality liquor”, and with that in mind Adam set out to deliver an environment which combines the luxury of life’s finer things with an urban edge in a contemporary take on the classic early 20th Century laneway bars of New York and London.
Renovating the old building was not without its challenges. The walls, for example, aren’t quite square requiring constant adjustments to the bespoke fittings. Luckily there were some talented craftsmen on the job including the father of one of the owners – the former boatbuilder is responsible for a lot of the lovely timber work details. Other elements that we love include the rich, shiny brown banquettes from Luke Makris below the rough brickwork, the beautiful oak parquet flooring upstairs, and Adam’s favourite feature: the upside-down street lights sourced from the USA. The venue – just named Best Bar at Australia’s Eat Drink Design Awards – is designed for small groups; seating is arranged accordingly and the lighting placed only where necessary for an intimate atmosphere.