Do you believe in magic? If not, you probably haven’t been to The Iron Fairies. Brought to us by famed Australian designer Ashley Sutton in collaboration with Dining Concepts, The Iron Fairies is an enchanting new bar that opened towards the end of last year on Hollywood Road.
Before his career in interior design, Sutton worked in the iron ore mines of Western Australia, where his imagination created stories of make believe and he used to sketch fairies as a hobby. He went on to write a trilogy of children’s books about a group of grumpy miners trapped in an iron ore mine, tasked with forging iron fairies. The books were called…. The Iron Fairies!
The bar, of which there are two others (in Bangkok and Tokyo), is the third bar opened by Ashley Sutton and Dining Concepts, after Ophelia and J.Borowski. If you’ve been to either of those and were impressed by the interiors, The Iron Fairies is on another level: from the ceiling hang 10,000 butterflies; above the bar hang hundreds of jars of multi-coloured fairy dust; on the walls are iron forging tools; the main area is made up of six individually designed furnaces for tables (complete with cute little iron fairies); and around the perimeter there are individual casting rooms that serve as private booths that can be booked for four to six people (with a minimum spend of $2,000). Everything about it is quite simply magical.
The drinks menu lists a selection of signature cocktails, alongside boutique beers and a handful of wines. We particularly enjoyed the watermelon martini, which comes with a “fairy dust” burnt marshmallow (i.e. a marshmallow coated in powdered chocolate!) and the Smoke in a Bottle No. 2, which comes in its own smoke-filled bottle ready to pour over ice.
Although most people think of The Iron Fairies as solely a bar, it actually has a full food menu as well, with a selection of “conversation food”, burgers, salads and even steak. We couldn’t resist the sound of the candied bacon. This was literally a pot of crispy, maple-glazed bacon; nothing else, just pure bacony deliciousness. Although the thought that this single dish contained more than an entire meal’s worth of calories did cross my mind, it was only a fleeting thought.
The deep-fried popcorn chicken with spicy aioli was also rather special, the batter crisp yet light, giving way to tender and juicy morsels of chicken.
How can you not order a burger that’s called Fat Gut’s Overloaded Burger? It sounds like the dream burger, doesn’t it? The brioche bun was spot on, the beef nicely cooked, topped with more of that delicious candied bacon, but, I must say, the main thing I remember about this burger was the lettuce leaf that just slightly dampened the mood. I’m of the opinion that if you’ve ordered a burger, you’ve ordered a burger; not a salad.
The Shari Chicken Burger, although still served with a pesky lettuce leaf, was actually more enjoyable than the beef burger. The fried chicken fillet, marinated in a blend of spices, was flavoursome, tender and juicy.
Worse than the lettuce leaf stealing the thunder of the burgers were the soggy fries. I had high hopes for these chips and even ordered more spicy aioli in which to dip them, but they were barely able to carry it. Nonetheless, of course, we still devoured them.
If the candied bacon contained a meal’s worth of calories, Mouna’s ice cream mess contained a whole day’s worth. Four large scoops of choc choc chip ice cream came loaded with mini oreo cookies, chopped up chocolate bars, marshmallows and nuts, drizzled in caramel sauce. I had to physically move the bowl away from my sight to stop myself eating the whole lot!
As you can expect from a bar of this calibre, drinks here aren’t cheap, with cocktails each upwards of $115 and glasses of wine around the same price. The food, however, is pretty reasonably priced, with starters around $100 and burgers between $108 and $158, including fries. The Iron Fairies is a very cool new hangout and it’s easy to see what attracts the crowds. There’s magic everywhere you look…perhaps they could do with injecting some of this magic into the burgers and fries…
The Iron Fairies
LG/F, Chinachem Hollywood Centre
1-13 Hollywood Road
Tel: +852 2603 6992