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Copyright Melway Publishing 2003.
Reproduced from Sydway Edition 9 with permission.
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After moving to Sydney seven months ago having lived on the Gold Coast for the past eight years, I needed to find a new local and fast! The Madison was our first stop - looked good, bar area and pool area (away from pokies - which I love, but not ALL the time).
Unfortunately, being a girl and needing to use the ladies, I had to give up the Maddo. After waiting 25 minutes (on various visits) and eventually having to use the mens out of desperation, I won't go there anymore. The staff were really bitchy when I asked to use the toilets upstairs. They only have one ladies toliet downstairs and junkies are always in it (hence the blue light bathroom over the road at the Royal Exhibition) - not so at the Maddo!
Atmosphere good but staff rude beyond belief. Don't talk to you while serving (but talk to each other) and always looking pained. I'd be suprised if any of them have ever smiled in their life. Pub with great potential, good pool tables, pokies round the back if you feel like a slap, good jukebox music too - but for me - I ain't going to spend my hard earned cash to pay the wages of a bunch of assholes - end of story!
review by: DirtyRedFox
If you read our original review of the Madison, you'll see we weren't best pleased with the service we got from the rather surly staff. Luckily, staff are not so permanent as the pubs themselves, so we decided, eventually, to go back and see if the situation had improved.
Well, let me tell you, it has. A touch. The service on our subsequent visits has been more in keeping with that rare commodity called 'courtesy', and we haven't had beer-soaked change thrust at us since that first review.
The Madison is still firmly 24 hour, and now advertises 24 hour pizzas too - which can't be a bad thing. I've ben lamenting the loss of my favourite 24 hour food place (Alexanders in George Street) for a while now, and it's nice to see that 24 hour food isn't fading fast.
Upstairs in the Hippo Lounge we have the disturbingly common African theme, complete with stuffed animal heads (see our review of the Exchange
in Balmain for why we don't like these), but the atmosphere is at least calm, convivial and conducive to conversation. If the balcony ever had a free spot, we'd probably come up here more often, too.
So the conclusion? Head right on upstairs if you're after tranquility. If you're OK with a bit more noise and jostling, stay down.
review by: Jason
Well, the décor’s OK, if you’re into Jungle theme pubs. Biggest problem though, on our visit, was that the service left a LOT to be desired. First, the barman scowls at us, pours two sloppy beers, dunks our change in a pool of beer (the international language of ‘fuck off’), then he tells us we can’t take our beer upstairs. Apparently it’s more expensive upstairs, and they don’t want folks buying beer downstairs and carrying it up, saving a few cents for their trouble.
I’m not into this idea. I want to see upstairs. I’m a reviewer for a damn pubguide, after all. To cut a long story short, I suggest that maybe they should have a sign that says ‘don’t take your beer upstairs.’. That went down well. Mark this barman up as the guy who never serves us again.
When I said there should be a sign, it was suggested to me that, hey "I am not the manager". Nah mate, and you never will be. If you’re the manager reading this, HEY! PUT UP A SIGN! And fire the barman so he can go back to flipping burgers at MacDonalds.
The Madison, unfortunately, joins our blacklist along with the Marble Bar. Happy New Year guys.
review by: pubguide staff