Stratton Bar & Kitchen
It’s shaping up to be a big year for Newstead, with a bunch of new arrivals slated to open in 2022. The first to arrive is Stratton Bar & Kitchen, the ambitious new drinking and dining spot from Ben and Tarryn Brown, the owners of hugely popular Commercial Road nightspot Mrs Brown’s Bar & Kitchen. The duo’s new concept is located around the corner on Stratton Street within a pair of WW2-era hangars nestled next to live-music venue The Triffid. Ben and Tarryn first inspected the site in the final days of 2020 and quickly became enamoured with its structural properties (especially the arched roofs) and the possibilities the spacious 920-sqm interior afforded. A fit-out process has seen the team lean into the venue’s industrial aesthetic, creating a dark and moody vibe via a material palette of steel and concrete. The hangars have been combined into one grand space divided by a central bar that services Stratton’s restaurant on one side and its function space on the other. A courtyard has also been erected, with a glasshouse-style roof offering shelter and the sense one is still sipping outside. Chef Andrew Toms has left the Mrs Brown’s kitchen to head up the culinary contingent at Stratton, creating a menu that offers something for everyone. The finalised offering favours share-style plates (both small and large), noodle dishes, sides, desserts and an array of easy-to-devour snacks. Expect tantalising tempters like chicken karaage milk buns with Japanese tartare and lemon, potato skins with porcini salt and manchego cheese, sliced roast duck breast with citrus sauce, and cacio e pepe udon noodles. A woodfired oven has also been installed, tasked with producing a selection of pizzas and bread for dips. Stratton’s beverage program is cocktail heavy, with a list boasting 35 concoctions, many of which are imbued with house-made syrups and shrubs. The bar also features a tighter wine and beer offering than its Commercial Road sibling, with 70 wines and 12 beer taps offering plenty of quaffing material.