Pavement Whispers: Volume 242 October 1
From news of LONgTIME’s closure and sibling venue Same Same to a new cafe and bar for Manly’s waterfront, 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 …
If you were enjoying a holiday under a rock last week, you might have missed the massive news bomb that the LONgTIME crew dropped. Tyron Simon and Frank Li, the brains behind the beloved Thai restaurant announced that the venue will close at the end of November. While this is devastating news on the surface, there’s more to this announcement that you need to know. Mere days after LONgTIME’s closure, the restaurant’s team will unveil Same Same, a brand-new 80-seat restaurant and bar currently taking shape on The Calile’s Ada Lane precinct. Same Same will sit next to Jocelyn’s Provisions, and will boast an eye-catching design conceived by Richards and Spence. The restaurant boasts 20 fewer seats than LONgTIME to provide some added flexibility to operations, though the street-level restaurant portion will boast an open kitchen that will be twice the size of LONgTIME’s. Chef Ben Bertei will be serving up a selection of LONgTIME fixtures such as lobster and turmeric curry, char-grilled beef short rib, and the crispy pork belly pad see ew (as well as some new recipes), while an upstairs bar will be the spot for pre- or post-dinner drinks – think Thai-style cocktails, beer and a wine list that will include 140 bottles. As for the original LONgTIME space, the venue will become a dedicated function hub for the group’s various venues (which includes hôntô and the forthcoming 22 Agnes), retaining the same furniture and equipment, but with flexibility for guests to go nuts and curate their dream event.
As the beloved flick Groundhog Day indicated, being stuck in a time loop has a lot of detractors, but having the ability to relive a delicious meal over and over again is not one of them. Groundhog Social is a forthcoming cafe and bar that will be looking to deliver that kind of consistency to locals of bayside suburb Manly. The venue comes from the team behind popular Holland Park West boozer Three Brews Bar, who have been searching for another opportunity around Brisbane for the past six months. A free tenancy on the Manly esplanade caught their eye and, after noticing a handy gap in the market for their brand of hospitality, immediately got to work stripping the space and building it back up from scratch. Groundhog Social will boast a capacity sitting somewhere between 110 and 130 patrons, with a fresh, modern and clean interior colour palette of peach, mint and white. As for the food and drink, Groundhog Social will start the day off right with a morning service featuring a breakfast menu of recognisable classics (think generous portions with a few signature tweaks) and caffeine from Coffee Supreme – both approachable blends and rotating single origins. For the afternoon and evening menu, the kitchen will pivot to a tapas-style offering, with share plates dished up alongside an ever-changing selection of craft beers (Brisbane breweries will be a focus), cocktails and a list of top-notch wines curated by award-winning wine writer Tyson Stelzer. Groundhog Social is aiming to open by early November – we’ll have more info as it comes to light!
Good Food Guide 2019 Awards
Last night, the best and brightest of Australia’s culinary industry descended on Brisbane for the annual Good Food Guide Awards. Hosted this year at the Howard Smith Wharves, the evening celebrated the country’s dining elite and the exciting up-and-comers, dishing out accolades as well as a swag of coveted Chef’s Hats. It was a big night for Queensland, which bounced back after a quiet year to snag a heap of newly minted hatted restaurants. Leading the charge was Queensland’s cadre of two-hat venues, which included OTTO Brisbane, Stokehouse Q, Noosa’s Wasabi Restaurant & Bar and Bakery Lane newcomer Joy, which also snagged the title of Australia’s Best New Restaurant. Brisbane’s one-hat recipients boasted a mixture of old and new faces, with established stalwarts such as 1889 Enoteca, Blackbird Bar and Grill, e’cco bistro, Gauge, Gerard’s Bistro, Golden Pig, GOMA Restaurant, Montrachet, Tartufo, and The Wolfe joined by newer arrivals like ARC Dining, Donna Chang, Greca, Hellenika, Hôntô, Little Valley and Restaurant Dan Arnold. For a full run-down on the big winners at this year’s awards, click here.
Gauge’s new direction
Speaking of Brisbane’s best, fresh off retaining its Chef’s Hat, heralded South Brisbane restaurant Gauge has undergone an evolution of sorts, or rather, a return to its roots. Don’t fret – the restaurant is still helmed by the same creative culinary team, it’s merely pivoting its approach slightly when it comes to its nighttime dining. The menu has shifted to offer a mix of a la carte and share-plate dining, with a relaxed service style to match. Gauge’s kitchen team is jumping at the chance to showcase some new producers, including Byron Bay’s Boon Luck Farm and Falls Farm in Mapleton, plus the restaurant’s interior has undergone some aesthetic touch-ups, including a new paint job and some fresh furnishings. The new direction will make Gauge a more accessible, all-occasion option, particularly for theatre goers looking to dine pre or post show. To celebrate the changes and introduce diners to the new menu style, Gauge is hosting a week of its famed Gauge X dinners. From Wednesday October 2 to Saturday October 5, guests can sample five courses prepared by five chefs for $85 per person – grab your tickets here.
If you’ve heard something that’s worth mentioning in The Weekend Edition’s Pavement Whispers, email [email protected].
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