Renowned mixologist Julian Short is responsible for this cocktail bar adjoining Coalition on Bolton Road. After training many businesses in the art of mixology and plying his skills in Sweden, Mexico, Scotland and Cuba, Julian is aiming to breaking the mould of how cocktails are made and perceived.
Equilibrio Lifestyle Blog
Sin+Tax, is cool for a number of reasons. The first reason is that it’s hard to find - like a secret society bungalow (think The Bookhouse Boys in Twin Peaks or Dead Poet Society). The entrance is down a dark alleyway with no signage. Very mysterious, and very enticing… But once inside the little windowless bar is warm and inviting with a tinge of dingy-grotto and a hint of designer-cool. The second reason is its smart name which our waiter said is “syntax” or "sin tax" but others are calling “sin and tax”. And the third reason is its menu.
Go thirsty to Sin+Tax because the cocktail list is outrageous. My first round was the Afterglow, a turmeric gin, camomile cordial, passion fruit, fennel seed and Absinthe mist concoction. With two superfoods included, it almost seemed healthy, but naughtily so. My second was the Apothica, another gin-based cocktail which came in a little black cauldron. I must admit I didn’t quite know how to approach this one, I copped out and asked for a straw.
And after two cocktails one’s shoulders start moving to the oozing music and the inevitable need for food arises. The food menu is limited at Sin+Tax, mostly bar snacks like biltong, nuts and olives or if you order before 8pm, you have a choice of a few pizzas. We shared a pizza which soaked up some booze and satisfied the craving.
If you’re not into cocktails there is a very inventive wine list and limited, but good wine by the glass. The whiskey list is excellent.
I’d recommend Sin+tax for pre-dinner drinks and mood-setting. The service was attentive and knowledgeable. I’ll definitely return.
Literally could not love this place more.
Have visited at least 4 times and have had mind-blowing experiences EVERY SINGLE TIME.
The cocktails and the vibe of the place are both just tops.
(Pretty sure you can't order food but the popcorn is a nice touch)
Rude, unpleasant experience!
Catching on to the old tradition of amazing cities like New York and Melbourne - a hidden entrance and password one might expect to find a fun and pleasant experience. I am no stranger to these experiences throughout the world and when Johannesburg- a city I have recently returned to was doing something just as edgy - I thought wow - and round up a bunch of my friends to try it out. It was highly unpleasant and the rude wanna be cool door lady and her protector were as pretentious and rude as the seedier mainstream clubs which people who value themselves don't frequent. Remember the word pretentious comes from the word pretend. You don't have to pretend - you are. You have nothing to prove - you have done something cool - own it. But instead - your door girl played this down and let her little "power hungry access control" role get to her head instead - and then I realised all too quickly that Johannesburg is in it's infancy - it's still pretending. It isn't yet New York or Melbourne - it's still trying to prove its worthiness. And then I realised this bar was not my place. This was about ego, exclusivity, power, low vibration and just plain rudeness. If you really don't want to be the next fad - ensure that customer service is a top priority. People are fickle - the fad will fade - and you'll be left with nothing because you did not nurture your patrons, your regulars and those that truly believed in the beauty you were trying to create. And although I do - I will not subject myself to rude door ladies who don't. Do yourself a favour and hire people at the door who are already assured deep down of just how awesome and treat others with the same respect. We are nothing until we learn how to treat each other.