An international email I sent earlier this week:
Oh dude - I went to the Duck & Swan with Pat last Friday.
It’s name has changed to the Duck Inn (why fuck with such a staunch name?)*
It’s run by like 5 Newtown-y girls and a puffy dude in orange chinos.
No coasters, no pokies, no carpet.†
Place looks like a fucken cafe/art gallery in Pearl Beach. Heavy.‡
On another note: Pat’s not drinking at the moment. I think it’s the first time I’ve felt louder than him.§
* Seriously though. Why?
Classic name, classic nature. ‘Duck & Swan’ said it all. Full of hard out, first-named regulars, but friendly enough to welcome anyone.
You know that old chain-smoking librarian from the Sydney Uni? Looks a bit like the Paddle Pop Lion? He was always there. Lording at the bar, pouring Reschs down the hole in his beard.
As a Sydneysider, the Duck & Swan felt like a pub I could be proud of. Somewhere that was just right.
And look, I understand the new owner’s thing. Chippendale is an area on the move. By all means, evolve, renovate the place. Appeal to the nu-chambray/nice food crowd.
But don’t mess with the name. Particularly if you’re going to replace it with a 12 for 10 cents pun.
† Good on The Duck Inn for getting rid of pokies. But no coasters?
Also: regular pub furniture has been replaced with kitschy vintage stuff. There’s vases with pebbles in them. It’s pretty much a cafe with beer taps. That said: I definitely don’t hate it.
‡ To fully satisfy this criteria, it would need a glass jar full of cookies labelled as “Naughty treats ;).”
§ One of Pat’s core competencies is converting beer into loud opinions.
Tip: If you liked this place, you’ll probably hate Ryan’s Bar.