Pavement Whispers: Volume 258 February 4
From news of a large-scale expansion for Bulimba’s Revel Brewing Co. to two new locations for Brisbane’s premier poke dispensary, The Weekend Edition is always on the search for the latest news in Brisbane, dedicated to ensuring its readers are in the know. When we put our ears to the pavement this week, this is what we found out …
Revel Brewing Co.
Brisbane’s craft-beer boom is set to run well into 2020 with the announcement that Revel Brewing Co. will be expanding with a brand-new production brewery, distribution centre, taproom and restaurant in Morningside. The brew crew – which boasts an ownership group spearheaded by Matthew Flexman and Jay Neven – first started pouring at its Bulimba birthplace in early 2018, quickly establishing a name for itself amongst the city’s crowded beer scene. Revel’s demand over the last two years skyrocketed faster (and wider) than initially expected, which led the crew to hunt for a spot that could house a larger brewing system and production facility capable of producing sufficient product for statewide distribution, while also allowing for future growth. Occupying a beautiful heritage building was high on the list of dream scenarios for Revel’s next phase, and fortuitously the perfect opportunity presented itself when BMI Group approached the Revel team with some potential vacancies at the Rivermakers @ Morningside business park. The heritage-listed former Commonwealth Acetate of Lime factory proved ideal not only because of its size, but also because of its significance to Brisbane’s brewing history. The site once housed a brewing system that was responsible for the fermentation and distillation of molasses, which after diluting produced a solution of alcohol that was used to create acetate of lime. Work is currently underway on stage one of Revel’s Morningside expansion – a 35-hectolitre, four-vessel steam-powered brewing system from Alpha Brewing Operations in the US, which will double Revel’s existing brewing capacity. Phase one is expected to come online in May, after which work will commence on stage two – a sizeable taproom and restaurant. The taproom will feature two sets of ten taps, which will cycle through Revel’s established range of core beers and limited-release brews. The restaurant will be equipped with a new commercial kitchen and will take inspiration from the brewery’s grain-to-glass approach by implementing a closed-loop farm-to-table system where spent grain is sent to farmers, who in turn supply the kitchen with farm-fresh produce. The taproom and restaurant are slated for completion before year’s end. We’ll have more updates on these stages as they near completion!
Cheeky Poké Bar
When the poke craze struck Brisbane with full force a few years back, it was Cheeky Poké Bar that helped cement it as more than just a passing fad. Since first opening at Newstead’s Haven precinct in 2017, owner Sam Demetriou and his family have built the brand gradually, opening a quick-service location in West End and a commercial-kitchen-meets-express-outlet in Greenslopes. The brand, which has favoured considered growth over rapid expansion, is set to have a massive 2020, with not one, but two new full-service locations currently in the works across town. The first location is currently taking shape in the heart of Westfield Garden City’s bustling dining precinct, and is set to be a full-size eatery much like its Newstead sibling. The 110-seater venue – on track for a mid-April opening – will boast an oasis resort vibe conceived by designer team Archie Bolden and installed by hospitality construction specialists DCB Developments. The second Cheeky Poké location on the cards will open as part of the forthcoming Brisbane City Ulster Lane redevelopment in early August, with a raw, concrete-heavy fit-out anchoring the rear of the strip. Cheeky Poké won’t be the only operation Sam is bringing to Ulster Lane, with a coffee-shop concept slated to open halfway along the laneway. As for the Cheeky menu, Sam is planning to launch the Garden City location with a new cocktail list and will also be bolstering the menus with a vegan-friendly soup offering and haloumi bowls, while expanding the protein selection to include scallops. We’ll have a closer look at these locations once they are open. Stay tuned!
In early January the owners of beloved Norman Park coffee and brunch spot Dovetail on Overend revealed that they have a new cafe in the works. Adam and Rejoice Thomson have secured the former home of Saint Laura in Highgate Hill for Dovetail, their new multifaceted cafe and baked-goods dispensary. Born from a desire to spread their wings and take their brand of hospitality to a bigger audience, the couple searched south of the river for an ideal spot, falling in love with the building’s homely character. A slight refit of the venue is currently underway, with Adam and Rejoice careful to retain as much of the existing charm as possible, while adding a clean and modern-industrial aesthetic throughout. Each of the interior’s rooms will boast its own purpose and vibe – one will be dedicated to showcasing work from local artists, a second (called the ‘Merchandise Room’) will display mementos of Dovetail on Overend’s story as well as a range of the cafe’s products, another room will host gluten-free high-tea gatherings, and one will be transformed into a dedicated baking room. As for the food, Dovetail will see the couple dip further into Rejoice’s Filipino heritage for culinary inspiration. In addition to the couple’s famed gluten-free Filipino-inspired baked goods and desserts (think purple-yam doughnuts topped with pavlova), the kitchen will create a menu filled with international influences – each instilled with a home-cooked feel. As for coffee, local roasting outfit Almanac Coffee will be on hand as the house blend, while single origins from other Australian roasters will pop in and out on a rotating basis. Also of note – Dovetail will trade in the evenings for an array of regular themed dinner events. Keep an eye out for Dovetail when it comes in late February or early March.
Suburban Social Neighbourhood Bar + Kitchen
In December 2016, Chapel Hill locals were blessed with the arrival of neighbourhood hang Suburban Social. The brainchild of Kris Dadson and Luke Dillon has been ticking along sweetly ever since, and now the duo are set to expand with a new 90-seat Suburban Social location in Holland Park due in late March. As locals are moving to Brisbane’s outer belt in increasing numbers, the Suburban Social team saw a great opportunity to replicate their brand of hospitality along these growth corridors. Kris and Luke have secured an old character-filled building (formerly a convenience store and fish and chippery) for the expansion, and are currently in the process of giving it an eclectic, mismatched industrial-inspired makeover. The structure’s high sloping roof will be complemented by new bifolds, added skylights, a double-fronted bar, a mural and a new deck – creating a lived-in oasis for the local community to enjoy. The team is using the opportunity to give the menu a long-overdue overhaul, adding vegan-friendly and vegetarian dishes alongside a refreshed selection of burgers, mains and share plates, which will be on offer at both sites. As for the drink, Suburban Social’s eight taps will pour independently owned craft beers, while boutique wines and Australian-made house-pour spirits will also be available.
Emily Yeoh Restaurant
Paddington will soon be the recipient of a brand-new restaurant helmed by a MasterChef alumni. Emily Yeoh (formerly known as Emily Loo) participated in the 2014 season of the hit cooking show, and has spent the five years since working at GOMA Restaurant and Blackbird, and more recently a two-year stint at Ben Shewry’s famed Melbourne restaurant Attica. Now, Emily has returned to Brisbane to open a restaurant of her own, snagging a 140-sqm space where she intends to pay homage to her culinary beginnings. Although bringing her Chinese roots to the fore, the menu at Emily Yeoh Restaurant will boast a cross-pollination of inspirations, with a broad menu of modern-Asian eats designed with a sustainable, farm-to-plate and biodynamic lean, all served in a casual, family-friendly atmosphere. Expect Emily Yeoh Restaurant to open around late March or early April – rest assured we’ll have a closer look once it arrives.
Lefty’s Music Hall
In case you missed the big news last week, here’s the scoop – storied bar Lefty’s Music Hall will reopen in late February under the control of Hallmark Group Australia. The group will be keeping the much-loved vintage honky-tonk atmosphere and live-music focus, but changing the name slightly (no more ‘Old Time’). Geoff Trio of Code One has been enlisted as Lefty’s Music Hall’s booking agent, with performances from US musician Eugene Hideaway Bridges and rockin’ roots quartet The Detonators slated for the coming months. Read all about the announcement here.
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