Melbourne Our Favourite Pub to be Sold
With great sadness we learnt last night that The Rose Hotel was to be sold next month. Those that know our site well, will be aware that the Rose is our favourite pub in Melbourne, and we regularly give it a plug as the best place in town to watch the football.
To be put simply, The Rose is a part of our weekly lives. The mixed grill on a Wednesday, roast of the day on a Sunday arvo, followed by a few pints on the street. It's been a remaining piece of old school Fitzroy at a time when the suburb's identity is being stretched.
Happiesthour team member Chris, enjoying a beer on his fav table (with all his friends).
Reasons why we love it.
- As Fitzroy supporters (yes they still exist), the Rose is one of the last places where both memorabilia and spoken memories can still be found.
- The old school Fitzroy blokes who must be pushing 80, usually sitting at the side bar, nursing a glass (yes a glass) of beer. Where will they tell their stories from now on?
- Watching the footy. It seems simple but there is something very comforting about watching the game on the TV (it had a satellite that got a country signal and strange rural commercials - hence live games), going outside on the street for half time, kick of the footy at 3 quarter time with complete strangers.
- We already mentioned it but the Roast of the Day (which is/was incredible value) seems to be amazing recuperative powers. Late last year when one of our team spent nearly a month in bed with glandular fever/tonsillitis - it was the roast and pint of Guinness that helped him recover.
- The outside tables - there are only 3 of them but they give a great vantage point to one of Melbourne's most beautiful backstreets. Time goes slow.
- The Rose was always a family pub. There are often more prams than bar mats. It's this relaxed communal nature that is so rare in the area these days.
One of the most concerning things about the sale is that it is for the freehold title. This email we received last night from a concerned friend sums it up.
"yeah - pretty shit. 'freehold vacant possession' - means it's not like the tote where the lease and building were owned separately and the pub could run the same after the building was sold. don't think apartments are likely there (although it's interesting it mentions there's a neighbouring property that could also be acquired), but whoever buys it will be running it or organising someone new to run it, so extremely unlikely it keeps the same vibe."
Unfortunately we do not have the millions to buy the place, or have enough Western Australian mates who could. It's a worrying time.
The Auction is April 27th at 12pm on a Friday. We'll be taking the day off.
UPDATE: April 29th. The Rose sold to a local who said that he didn't want to change the hotel. No developing, no yuppy pizza bar. Good wins against Evil. See here for article
UPDATE: July 17th: Last Thursday the new manager made some changes.
They added 3 more beer taps (Mountain Goat Steam Ale, Coopers Sparkling Ale, and Thunder Rd Bitter). BIG TICK. They also brought in a huge Samsung TV screen for the main bar, moving the old one into the side bar. BIG TICK AGAIN.No changes to staff or prices of food or beer. BIG TICK AGAIN AGAIN
UPDATE: JULY 21st: Went there last night. They have removed one of the blackboards, and put up another blackboard on the side wall (replacing a historic Fitzroy FC team photo) with "new specials" - Swordfish for example. These hovered around the $20 mark which is high for the Rose. Hope this isn't a trend. While I love the Rose simple pub grub, I always though the Nachos were very ordinary, but last night I saw a table getting into them, and they looked much much better, so obviously something is being done in the kitchen.
UPDATE OCTOBER 23rd 2013: Sadly the people in the kitchen are starting to let things slip. Had two roasts which were well below par and the Mixed Grill has really reduced in size. I'm all for quality ingredients and such but things need to be sorted. I see they seem to be advertising for chefs quite a few times. Hope they sort it out. Has gone from #3 to #1 in our Top 35 pub list.
UPDATE: DECEMBER 11th 2013: Tonight the upstairs section becomes open to the public. It will be a standalone space comprising restaurant area and open deck.
This is from the management.
"It is two separate venues under the same roof! Something for everyone."
Often during footy season the place is absolutely packed, not helped by people dining. If they can go upstairs, leaving more space to watch the game, I'm all the more happy for that.