Now open – Beaux Rumble brings a touch of luxe to Ada Lane
New York City is flush with must-visit tourist destinations. Landmarks like Central Park, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Times Square, the Rockefeller Centre and the Statue of Liberty are justifiably impressive, but when it comes to sheer number of visitors, Grand Central Station takes the cake. From the main concourse to its myriad of hidden rooms, nooks and crannies, few major transit stations boast the same kind of stately majesty as Grand Central. This historic building (and its iconic Beaux-Arts architectural style) forms a core inspirational component of Beaux Rumble, Ada Lane’s brand-new restaurant. The brainchild of a top-notch hospitality group, a Michelin-starred chef and an imaginative interior designer – Beaux Rumble boasts a classic approach, a dynamic offering and a soft-yet-refined aesthetic.
When Alan Wise wrapped up an 11-year stint working in New York’s dining scene, he returned to his native Australia to ponder his next move. The previous decade had seen the chef work across numerous highly regarded restaurants such as Rouge Tomate, Picholine, Juni and Public, but his relocation Down Under offered the chance for the Michelin-starred chef to slow down and chase some unique opportunities. Last year Alan spent eight months driving across sub-Saharan Africa raising awareness for clean-cooking issues and penning a cookbook, but upon his return he caught wind of an exciting prospect taking shape off James Street, one located in the shadow of newly opened landmark hotel The Calile. The project was the newie from Darkhorse Hospitality Group (Pony Dining) Beaux Rumble – one of several restaurants announced for the anticipated Ada Lane precinct. At this time, Beaux Rumble was merely a concept, but even the silhouette of the restaurant’s identity was enough to sell Alan to come on board as head chef. Enticed by the venue’s location, its New York-inspired aesthetics and the prospect of working with wood, fire and smoke for a predominantly seafood and plant-based menu, Alan had found an energising challenge he could sink his teeth into. Thus, a key piece of Beaux Rumble’s puzzle was in place, and work began on actualising the two-level venue’s ambitious concept.
Around the time Alan was cruising through Africa, the Darkhorse crew was also spruiking Beaux Rumble to Sydney-based interior designer Sally Taylor of s.t.udio. Their brief, which foregrounded a vision of New York-inspired aesthetics viewed through a classic and restrained lens, tickled Sally’s sensibilities. She immediately looked to Grand Central Station for inspiration, through her research falling in love with the building’s cloistered treasures, hidden rooms and the history that revealed itself only when wanderers cared to dig deeper into the finer details. From here, Sally settled on Beaux Rumble’s core visual direction – it would boast a soft elegance and a refined simplicity that belied the finer details. The space would unveil itself to guests in stages, and would offer a different experience each time they visited. Guests are welcomed in a stately entry (reminiscent of Grand Central’s main concourse), with a gorgeous hanging light fixture illuminating a brass logo in the floor. A burgundy-coloured lounge area (colour is used sparingly to highlight and contrast spaces) near the entry offers a comfortable and intimate space to enjoy a pre-dinner drink, before being guided back through the entry to the main dining room. Here, the heat of the custom grill and woodfire oven welcomes you as you settle and soak in the domed ceilings and hand-made subway tiles. The nearby bar boasts Monaco Brown marble bench tops and custom-designed marble tiles inspired by Art-Deco stained-glass patterns, while oak flooring and brass fittings are common throughout. All materials have been chosen for their ability to age over time, softening the edges and creating a lived-in vibe that evokes Grand Central’s timeless glamour. Upstairs sits two private dining spaces (named the Biltmore Room and the Vanderbilt Room) and a balcony space overlooking Ada Lane, which is perfect for catching errant breezes over brunch or drinks.
The food and drink
As for the fare, Alan has shaped his menu with his core tools in mind. Everything edible has been touched by wood, fire or smoke, drawing enticing flavours out of classic combinations. Although the menu will be ever evolving based on its produce-driven approach, there will always be a discernible lean towards seafood and vegetables, with only a small cadre of protein-based dishes available. The dining affair starts with a selection of tasters, including cherry wood-smoked oysters, wood-fired bialy (a chewy yeast roll similar to a bagel) served with comté caramelised onions and corn polenta bread with Oscietra caviar. These smaller dishes segue into a selection of mid-size plates such as wood-fired Western Australian sardines, charred baby gem lettuce with bocarones (anchovies), radicchio with sherry-glazed shallots, champagne cray ceviche and grilled scallops with roasted enoki mushrooms. Beyond this sits the larger morsels – smoked lamb neck with pea puree, whole-roasted Victorian rainbow trout, iron bark-charred leeks with almond cream, fire-roasted langoustines (Norway lobster) and glazed Fremantle octopus. After the flame-licked main event, desserts are clean and light by comparison. Lemon sorbet, liquorice ice-cream with cocoa meringues and rhubarb with vanilla custard and oatmeal biscuits make for a refreshing finisher. When it comes to the drinks, Beaux Rumble’s beverage list is extensive but easy to follow. It starts with cocktails (both boozy and booze-free), before moving on to beers (divided into light, heavy, 500ml and ciders) and the wine selection. Vino lovers will surely be pleased at the gluggable array on offer, with bubbles, pink and orange varietals, whites and red wines available by the glass and bottle. Stuck for a choice? The bottles are divided into handy categories (light and elegant, mid-weight, robust, rich and textured, and big) letting you hone in on the perfect drop easier.
Beaux Rumble officially opens to the public next week – head to the Stumble Guide for more details.
The Stumble Guide is our comprehensive Brisbane dining guide with more than 2400 places to eat, drink, shop and play.