The Cat and
Fiddle Hotel

The Cat & Fiddle Hotel has something for everyone, whether you’re a local, a tourist, or a destination diner. With a rich culture, heritage, and boutique offering, our charming establishment is widely regarded as one of the best pubs in Sydney.

The Cat & Fiddle Hotel in Balmain is a must-see for anyone looking to immerse themselves in authentic Australian culture. Our bistro, serves classic pub meals as well as modern Australian cuisine. Furthermore, if you’re searching for the perfect night out in Balmain, keep an eye out for What’s On at the Cat & Fiddle with plenty of specials and events to fill in your calendar.

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Eat, drink and stay at the Cat & Fiddle Hotel, Balmain

A hotel isn’t just a place to sleep for the night, but an important part of your holiday experience. At the Cat & Fiddle Hotel in Balmain we offer you comfortable lodgings as well as an experience of both the area’s bustling atmosphere and its intriguing history.

Following a recent renovation, our Balmain hotel rooms feature sleek and modern furnishings, designed to give you a balance between the boutique and the affordable so that you can relax in stylish comfort. Each morning you’ll receive a delicious breakfast to set you up for a day of touring or relaxation as well as all day room service offerings.

Our historical venue is situated on colourful and ambient Darling Street, a cultural hub of Balmain. Join us in one of the best bars in the Balmain area, famed for its live music nights and comprehensive selection of liqueurs, beers and wines, thoughtfully chosen by our in-house sommelier. If you’re looking for a great bite to eat, pop into our in-house restaurant, Rita’s kitchen, where you can dine on a fantastic variety of pub classics including wood-fired pizza and delicious trattoria-style meals.

Much like the popular nursery rhyme that lends itself to the hotel’s name, you’re certain to stumble across a few surprises at the Cat & Fiddle Balmain.

And while “Cows Jumping Over Moons” may not be one of them, the Cat, offers something even better … good friends, great music and an amazing atmosphere – always accompanied by friendly welcoming staff, keen to make you feel like a local.

Located less than six kilometres from the Sydney CBD and primely positioned on a corner of Balmain’s celebrated Darling Street, the historical, brick, two-storey hotel is not unlike its nine-lives feline namesake – undergoing numerous facelifts that have revamped it, refurbished it and ultimately resurrected it into one of the suburb’s premium gastro-pubs.

View Our History

Initially, established in 1930 as the Star Hotel (making it the second last one to be built in Balmain), the Cat & Fiddle Hotel went on to become a neighbourhood icon in the ‘80s and ‘90s as one of the few live music venues in Sydney – with bands such as The Whitlams, The Waifs and Leonardo’s Bride kicking off their careers there.

After almost a century, it has reclaimed its crown as the king of the inner-west pub jungle, owing to a recent renovation led by veteran hotelier Richard Wynne. The modern set-up includes plush interiors, upgraded air conditioning and a new gaming room. As well as a light-filled, leafy back bar where tables sit under hanging green ferns and a ceiling of sophisticated skylights. (And where dogs, ironically, remain very welcome!)

Today, those thirsty for a luxurious drinking experience with a local touch will undoubtedly find it at the Cat & Fiddle. Open for both an afternoon aperitif or spirit-filled sunset, the hotel’s world-class bar offers a spectacular selection of quality Australian drops (including classic, icy-cold Lion beers on tap) as well as international, award-winning liqueurs and a wine-list carefully hand-selected by a leading sommelier.

Similarly, patrons hungry for a memorable dining destination will definitely not be disappointed, with both the bar and the hotel’s chic in-house restaurant offering a range of options. From upgraded pub grub (a wood-fired pizza oven is the star of the show) at lunch, to the fine trattoria-style Mediterranean menu of the Cat & Fiddle Bistro for dinner. The only thing you’ll be hungry for is the opportunity to repeat your Cat & Fiddle experience sooner rather than later!


Food was great! We had a great lunch here.
Really like the new renovation and the restaurant. Will definitely return.

Troy Knox

Had some beers and a schnitzel which was excellent. Great staff and accommodating within restrictions.

Matt Heath

One of the best food experiences in Sydney. Exquisite food. Exceptional beer. Great company and great staff. The customer service is second to none. I’ll be back next weekend. The weekend after. And the weekend after that.

Scott Rhodie

Had 'pre dinner' drinks there last night. We were offered seating in the lounge area just above 'Rita's' dining area and we could not fault the service and friendliness of the staff.

Ray Partridge

Outstanding food at very reasonable prices. Highly recommended.

Tony Morris

Food was very good. The honey chicken was lovely and tender and the tapas was outstanding.


A nice place, a classic pub, many good beers, a good welcome and good service.

Saverio De Michele

Great pub with an excellent food menu. The staff are very friendly and definitely add to the vibe. Well worth a visit.

Adam Walker

Great live music, nice relaxed atmosphere. Def go again

Catherine Denina

Great friends, food and live music

Cat and Fiddle Hotel in Balmain

Drinking and dining done, the hotel offers an ever-evolving entertainment roster every evening of the week – with everything from trivia nights to live performances taking the stage.

Ultimately, whether you opt to sip or sup there, a visit to the independently owned and operated Cat & Fiddle Hotel offers a truly unique opportunity to lose yourself amongst Balmain’s inimitable charm and discover why this purr-fect inner west institution really is #notjustanypub.

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