Harts Pub / Rocks Brewing Co.

81 Ratings

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

Gloucester St
The Rocks, NSW 2000

+61 2 9251 6030 | map

No notes at this time.

Added by laituegonflable on 04-21-2010

Beers are brewed at / by another brewery.
BA Score:
View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 13 |  Reviews: 11
Reviews by dgilks:
Photo of dgilks
3.43/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Hart's Pub is located in The Rocks in a slightly hard to find location. They offer 12 taps of craft beer with 5 offerings from the house Rocks Brewing Company. In a positive step for Sydney craft pubs, Harts offers tasting sample of all their beers as well as serving all beers in pints and halves. It would be nice if the range of glassware was expanded to enable Belgian styles and bigger beers to be served in more appropriate glassware (such as tulip glasses). The pub itself is modern and decked out with plenty of wood which helps to increase the hominess of the place. Unfortunately, parts of it feel a bit cramped and pokey. The bar staff are decent but lack knowledge of their product but were willing to be flexible and get the kitchen to make a substitution on a dish. The food at Harts is good with my burger being very tasty but they are charging at the top end of pub food prices so I expect nothing less.

Overall, the experience is good if you are in The Rocks but I'd still rather take the hike over to the Local Taphouse in Darlinghurst.

 1,055 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of WoodBrew
4.75/5  rDev +31.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

This was my 2nd time and it was better than the first. It caters to local crowd as it is not on some main street. Multiple rooms and an upstairs...tvs to watch sports. The food is fantastic...had pulled pork 1st time...sloppy Joe 2nd...both good. Service was great relative to aussie standards. Highly highly recommend.

 323 characters

Photo of BillRoth
4.19/5  rDev +16.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Arrived close to closing, and staff clearly ready to call it a day. But Sam took the time to discuss beers and pour tastings across taps as an education on Aussie beers. Had excellent knowledge of beer beyond Australia, and made for a nice visit.
Pub had 12 taps all Aussie craft. 2 hand pump. Old school pub in the old districtcalled the Rocks. Definitely throw back to early 20th century. Great music piped through rooms...mix of rock and punk while we were there.
Very cool building with 5 or so rooms on 3 floors ...all with inscribed quotes from Shakespeare, Churchill, Poe, Hemingway, etc. on the walls. Main rooms on main floor are bar room oriented with larger groups of people, tables, chairs, games, tv, etc. Upstairs are quieter with overstuffed leather furniture. more relaxed.
Enjoyed Hart's as much as any beer venue in Sydney. Would go back if visiting again.

 875 characters

Photo of KenOath73
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.25

Photo of Agentveba
4/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of SmashPants
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3

Haven't been to Harts for a little while now - used to go there every now and then as a starting point heading into The Rocks. I never really bothered to go there by myself or with a friend or 2 as it is too far a walk from most of the pubs in Central / Town Hall and doesn't really strike me as that sort of place.

It has a great atmosphere with an old English pub feel and plenty of space and rooms. Also served in pints, which is reasonably rare for Sydney. The service was sometimes average and sometimes quite good - depends on the day and the bar staff you got on the day, typical of almost any pub.

The beers they had were also decent - I wouldn't say they were mind-blowing but were good all-rounders. Perfect for a few before a big night at The Rocks, funnily enough. Pricing isn't too bad either.

 808 characters

Photo of XsoldoutX
3.14/5  rDev -12.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5

The atmosphere of Harts pub is pretty good I suppose, but the beers they brew are nothing more than average, at best. There are way better places to go in Sydney for craft beer. The place itself is fairly nice and I would definitely go there with friends for some beers and whatnot but yeah, the ladyfriend and I were dissappointed with the 4-5 beers we had that they brew. Sorry! Average at best!

 397 characters

Photo of mulder1010
3.43/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5

Been a few times so need to put a review together.

A-- Really nice building. Good feel to it. English style pub. Looks and feels authentic. Lots of cool places to hide and have a beer. Too bright though. Needs to be a touch darker to give more ambience. Good location and can find parking!!! Big plus.

Going to combine Q and A together on this one. Taps are all Australian. That is OK as usually a pretty solid mix of stuff. 4 are for the house beers done by Rocks Brewing. Usually a cider on tap and some a mixture of Australian Hotel (Rouse Hill), Feral, White Rabbit, Murray's, 4 Pines, Holgate, etc. House beers are good but nothing special (note: last time there had the IPA and that was Excellent). Good bottle list but the strength is again Australian focus. Saw an Anderson valley beer there but was there for Australian stuff.

F--- Have not eaten there but the pub is in the SMH.com.au good pub guide and considered one of the best pubs in the CBD.

S-- Counter service so at times good, others very meh

V-- Price structure was well done. Good value in getting pints as opposed to smaller glasses. Wish the website would put up what is on tap currently.
Really good venue and very much the best pub in the Rocks.

 1,230 characters

Photo of heygeebee
4.06/5  rDev +12.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Been to Harts a fair few times, mostly in pre-BA days, so time to put pen to paper...

The building itself is Old, and YAY!!!! it's not a Beer Barn - quite the opposite in fact, lots of small rooms set out criss-cross, so the overall feel is quite cosy. There is a beer garden outside/upstairs, to which I did not venture. Inside the decor is all vintage, with wooden floors and panelled walls. The fit-out is in line with its locale in The Rocks, and as such, being a craft-only beer bar, quite brave for both the location and, I assume, the rent.

There are 10 or so taps, and 4 or so of these are set aside for the Rocks Brewing. The others rotate, and when we were in in there were offerings from Murrays and White Rabbit, among others. All beers are available in middies / schooners / pints. Not too cheap, but not out of this world. The lengthy and excellent Australia-centric bottle list is however, a different matter. Very well priced indeed. Emphasis on taps and bottles overall is on the more easy drinking styles, rather than the bigger (and equally non-sessionable) beers.

Service was all we could ask. Eight of us in for the session, and we were well looked after.

I didn't personally have any food so won't rate - my mates did and were impressed.

In saying all of the above, its easy to overlook a basic fact. Harts is a Pub. It's not a bar, it's not a lounge, it's a good old fashioned Pub, serving good old fashioned beer. Long may it stay.

 1,462 characters

Photo of MrKennedy
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Time to review after several visits.

Nice old style pub that did benefit from a good refurb within the last couple of years. The atmosphere is generally always social, hard timber surfaces all round create a buzz, likewise the building support structures reduce the available space, but create a cosy feel while doing so. Getting around, to the bathroom etc can be difficult when a decent crowd is in due to the support structures.

Beer tap list is 11 strong (Australian only, generally at least 4 of these are in-house) plus another Australian cider. Quality of the range is average to good, with the occasional very good beer on. Compared to most places nearby this stands out, however the quality of tap beer usually on does not make it a destination venue.
Kudos to them, however, that they are good supporters of the local craft industry.

Service is mixed, surprisingly I've found the service better when busy. When it is quiet I've had disinterested staff.

Selection of bottled beers is good, nice world classics like Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Chimay and good Aussie micros (better than the taplist on most occasions).

Food quality is good, some of the best wedges I've had. Beer festival food experienced in the past has been hearty.

Prices for tap beers can be a touch high. Bottled prices on most lines are respectable.

Good venue and with a few changes could be at the top of Sydney's craft beer venues.

 1,419 characters

Photo of jabba27
2.35/5  rDev -34.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 1 | service: 3 | selection: 3

I had a short trip to Sydney and wanted to maximise the beer experience as much as I could. or at least as much as you can in any capital city. Trips throughout the US in the 90’s and, (as an Englishman), many trips to London have consistently proved that the two don’t always go hand in hand.
As an ardent supporter of micros I was keen to try Harts Pub/The Rocks Brewing Co. The beer scene in Australia is very interesting at the moment and even exciting. Many Aussie Brews can now stand alone and whilst there will always be a place for the cold fizz on a hot day, flavour is now key.
Situated in The Rocks, a wonderfully historical area, the place can count locals, regulars and tourists amongst it’s client base. Not sure that I agree with a previous reviewer that it's hard to find, though The Rocks can be a labrynth.
Externally the premises are inviting and any renovations are tastefully done. The interior is similarly appealing. Given the age of the buildings in The Rocks, rooms are small but that’s the reality. The property presents well.
My visit was on a Thursday afternoon, so hardly the time to expect atmosphere. Though quiet, (I think I was the only paying customer in there), had I taken a newspaper and found beer of even above average quality I would have been a happy man.
The beer was a huge disappointment. Of the three I tried, all tasted sour and even a bottle of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale tasted as though it's best days were behind it. Clean the pipes, change the keg or do something already!! Very off putting and micros of this calibre do so much harm to the micro scene. The chance to sample the rarely seen Sierra Nevada Stout and Porter, (bottled), was passed over on the strength of the beers already served. With the right quality I’d have been there all day!
The staff whilst friendly enough were clearly not employed on the basis of beer knowledge, and were more concerned over a property rental they were seeking than the dishwater grey porter they served. I don’t know what the employment market is like in Sydney, but suffice to say that in many places, temporary/transient staff are employed. Nothing wrong with that as a business owner, of course, but perhaps some specialist knowledge would not go amiss
I was hoping for much more from The Harts pub. Any new micro is to be welcomed if not championed. The enthusiasm for the visit waned very quickly and having left another well known brewery pub for the purpose, it was doubly disappointing.
I have to agree with the previous reviewer who recommended the Local Tap House over The Harts pub. A great opportunity in the most beautiful of areas seems to be going to waste....and my belief that capital cities and good beer are not common bedfellows still has some legs. Thank Goodness for Melbourne!

 2,802 characters

Photo of istarilord
2.71/5  rDev -24.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 1 | selection: 3.5

Seemed like a nice place when I walked in. It's in the rocks, but it has a newish feel despite the old building. The decor looks like bits of it done up a bit more for tourists than for locals, or at least yuppie locals.

Lots of beers on tap, 4 of their own. A bit on the expensive side, but I expected that. The one beer I had was fine. Not amazing, but not bad. More than I'd pay for a brewpub's own if I planned on being a usual.

I was by myself after a symphony matinee, came in and sat at the small bar well before the dinner rush, but got very little service. I'm not sure if the barmaid thought I wanted to hit on her, or if she was too distracted by the other waitstaff hitting on her instead, but after I ordered my beer it seemed like she was doing all she could to avoid any and all contact. Would like to have tried the food, but gave up and headed elsewhere. I don't plan on going back.

 901 characters

Photo of brendan13
4.13/5  rDev +14.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Visited here on a quiet Tuesday afternoon a week or so after they had opened.

I guess you'd say it's an English styled pub in the fitout and decor. Different areas to drink in but I chose a bar table right by the bar.

The 12 taps are dedicated to Australian craft beers and mainly New South Wales. 3 or 4 of the taps are Rocks Brewing Company beers. Which was the main reason why I came here.

I tried the Bitter, Porter and Pale Ale. All pretty good examples of the respective styles.

Food wise they have a pretty broad selection of some very nice sounding dishs. Wanting something simple I went with the Cajun Crocodile which was good but a little chewy. On the advice of the friendly guy behind the bar I was planning on going back on Friday but never got around to it.

Well priced for The Rocks. If your in Sydney this is somewhere you should visit. Great too see another craft beer focused venue up & running.

 918 characters

Harts Pub / Rocks Brewing Co. in The Rocks, Australia
Brewery rating: 3.53 out of 5 with 81 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.