It’s hard to walk into such a classic art deco pub – the former Hotel Broadway – without being curious about its history.
Sidney Warden, the most industrious of the architects working for Tooth & Co., NSW’s major beer brewer, designed this pub.
Warden actually designed hundreds of pubs, including many you’ll be familiar with today - the Clare, the Lansdowne, the Henson Park, and the Light Brigade – to name but a few. While you might think the extravagant decoration would have sat at odds with their role as working class watering holes, the idea was to make them into imposing art deco advertisements for their brewery owners.
We have some history too, this pub and I; with this blog’s last visit back in 2011 when it went by the name, the Broadway Lounge. For a brief period this pub was also known as The Stoned Crow, before a tussle over naming rights morphed it into Broadway Crown. The slightly wonky O in the logo is a little reminder of this bit of history.
Today I find the interior darkened and relaxed, with exposed bricks, framed photos, and green ferns.
Over the course of my meal it fills out with a rag-tag bunch of Chippendale locals, students and people knocking off from nearby offices, with most arriving in time for the 4pm-7pm weekday happy hour(s).
This makes my White Chocolate Passionfruit Martini ($16) just twelve bucks. The vodka is cake-infused, the passionfruit is tart and fresh, and there’s a floating passionfruit full of yummy white chocolate buttons to play with. Vera Green ($16) takes gin, cucumber juice, limoncello and aloe vera juice and morphs them into something that – while too floral for my personal taste – would certainly be cooling on a hot day.
On the menu you’ll find all the contemporary pub classics, running from burgers to wings, to nachos and pizzas. The Giant Chicken Schnitzel ($25) is big, with the beer-battered chips almost completely obscured by well-crumbed, moist bird. It arrives with a simple mushroom sauce and a small, well-dressed salad; but if you still want more bang for your buck, come eat it on Thursdays when it drops to just $17.
We pad out our shared schnitty with Cauliflower Bites ($11) smothered in extra Cheese Sauce ($3). The interiors are soft, the crumbing is crunchy, and the lightly spicy, cheesy sauce makes them easy to like.
Korean Fried Chicken Wings ($11) are sweet and very sticky, with a bit of gochujang heat on the back palate.
They’re too sweet for me, but it’s easy to fix when Broadway Crown have the full range of Tabasco products ready and waiting for you to abuse them.
While brown crisp edges mean the 10-inch Crispy Peking Duck Pizza ($20) doesn’t look like much when it lands, it is certainly very ducky! With a liberal helping of Tabasco Chipotle to balance the glaze’s overt sweetness, I enjoy it despite it being gourmet (where the topping is more important than the base) rather than Italian.
Broadway Crown has thrown off all gastro-pub trappings to be a pub for the people; delivering what the locals want, at a price they’re willing to pay.
166 Broadway Chippendale
Ph: (02) 9211 5993