More new live music venues and bars for Ballarat

Ballarat's entertainment scene continues to grow with the addition of several new bars and live music venues to the city's line-up in 2020. 

The sad face that resulted from the closure of popular nightspot Karova Lounge late last year has turned into a happy face with the launch of Volta (15 Field Street, Ballarat) on 1 February.

Josh Pyke, Ali Barter and Tex Perkins will be among the first to grace the Volta stage.

"We want to create an arts and culture venue that champions live music," the venue's booking manager, Lachy Anderson, told The Courier.

"While it's heavily going to be a live music venue, we're also going to be focusing on a lot of other avenues."

Piano Bar Geelong
Image: Piano Bar Geelong

And the rumours around Piano Bar have proved to be true, with the popular Geelong, Bendigo and Colac venue opening at 31 Sturt Street in the coming months.

The Piano Bar website says the venue offers "an unforgettable medley of atmosphere, entertainment and service", with musicians, vocalists and drag queens performing songs by request.

"The ability for the room to control the music is fantastic because it can take them back to a time and allow them to share that moment with family and friends," Piano Bar managing director Aaron Skinner told The Courier.

The historic Sturt Street building previously housed another live music venue, Sutton's House of Music.

Meanwhile, the Geelong bar that has been crowned Australia's best regional bar by Bartender Magazine for the past two years is also coming to Ballarat.

The 18th Amendment Bar is set to be unveiled at what is currently The Lost Ones Basement Bar (14 Camp Street) in March.

Named after the Prohibition which made it illegal to sell or consume alcohol in America between 1920 and 1933, the hip venue takes patrons back in time to Chicago's speakeasy bars. 

Spirits are at the heart of The 18th Amendment Bar, with its owners wanting to build the public's appreciation of fine liquors including whiskey, gin and rum.

Upstairs, The Lost Ones Gallery will remain in operation at the site. 

This news follows the opening of The Comfort of Strangers (307 Mair Street, Ballarat) late last year.

Exposed bluestone and bricks, a curved bar and comfy booths add to the charm of this new wine bar, which is owned and operated by Torquil Neilson. 

The Comfort of Strangers' wine list has a European focus with a special appearance from the Ballarat region's Latta Vino, produced by Australia's 2018 Young Winemaker of the Year Owen Latta.

Boutique beer and spirits also make the cut, with a unique inclusion being Mexico's agave-based mezcal.


Main image: The 18th Amendment Bar