Voodoo Bar: Awaken your spirit

Part Tiki, part Voodoo, part New Orleans, appropriation or cherry-picked, the Voodoo Bar is peculiar cultural mix offering NoHo a speakeasy with a twist. Pancho Villa (PV) has rented out their backroom and you better keep an eye on the new tenant. He’s got a penchant for the black arts.

“Everything about Voodoo and Hoodoo I fell for hard, hot and heavy,” bar manager Dean Moready told us.

“From aspects of the offerings to Loa, to the culture, tastes, smells and sounds of Voodoo, it just made sense to me and I wanted to replicate that into cocktails, atmosphere and service.”

With the blessing of PV, Dean turned the backspace into a discrete and discreet cocktail bar. Similar to PV, there is both classics and creative licence in the drinks on offer, more rum, less tequila and a space that’s quirky and a bit alterno. Ohh and there’s spicy popcorn with the drinkies.

“The Idea of Voodoo is to be taken from Hobart to a hut in the Islands then landing like a Tardis in the middle of New Orleans somewhere between 1930’s -1980’s,” Dean told us.

“The cocktails are a combination of both Tiki and New Orleans cultures with as much Tasmania produce as we can to fill in the spaces.”
Dean told us that he’s trying to recreate an atmosphere of jazz and blues, a ‘clash of speakeasy and trash tiki.’

The bar is an array of comfort and kitsch. I love a bar with a pool table but I can live without the television. The sliver of an outdoor area is aflame in island style when dusk approaches.

Dean became a Tasmanian in 2015, spent some time at Nant Whisky Distillery and has been with PV since 2017 and is their current venue manager.

“Voodoo Bar is a combination of all venues I have worked in from New Zealand to Australia and what I have learnt and loved along the way.

Dean told us he started bar work at the Cargo Bar and Restaurant in Auckland and for those who know the land of the long white cloud, his resume includes the Snap Dragon, Carpark, Bungalow 8, and Atticus Craft Cocktail Lounge.

It was the bars of Brisbane where he really got to hone his skills.

“I had my first trial shift at the Beat, first casual shift at the Breakfast Creek Hotel’s Substation (an encyclopedia of rums on the wall), first full time position at Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall (If you don’t know it, you missed out), ran the Mexican kitchen Los Villanos, then went on to my first Blues bar Sonnys House of Blues in the Brisbane CBD,” Dean said.

You’ll find Voodoo is a place to chillax and you’ll also find some scheduled events. They’ve started feature evenings – Jazz, live tennis broadcasts, $5 pint nights and comedy nights.

“We love to support locals, we are starting our Jazz nights, the first Thursday of each month, as well as comedy nights that brings those Tasmanian giggles to the table,” Dean said.

“The 8-ball table has also been a great hit for passing time or after work drinks.”

And when the memory of Hobart’s current tropical weather begins to fade, you’ll still feel the warmth of the equator with their roasty-toasty wood fire heater.

Find them at 1 Pitt Street North Hobart
Find them on Facebook @voodoobarhobart
Another self-fashioned speakeasy is the Gold Bar just off Salamanca.

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