Bavarian restaurants to donate all profits on one day to drought-stricken farmers Rockpool Dining Group’s Bavarian restaurants are digging deep to assist drought-affected farmers and will donate all profits from 16 venues in New South Wales and Queensland on Sunday, 26 August to support drought relief. The Bavarian and The Bavarian Beerhaüs restaurants in the … Read more


Vivid Winter Festival Sydney – till 17 June

Sydney is set to be transformed into a kaleidoscope of neon light now and right up until Saturday, 17 June, for the world’s largest winter festival: Vivid. Those watching this exquisite display can do so in style, from one of Rockpool Dining Group’s perfectly located venues around the city.

The Argyle
The Argyle

Grosvenor Place, CBD and Darling Harbour
, located directly in front of the Vivid display at Grosvenor Place, will extend Aperitivo Hour from 3pm to 7pm, every weekday throughout the festival. Guests can snuggle up on Rosetta’s heated outdoor terrace while sipping on a $10 aperol spritz, negroni, espresso martini, house wine or beer. A selection of $10 salumi and antipasti are also available. The restaurant will open early from 5pm for à la carte dining. A two-course Vivid set menu ($49pp) is also available until 6pm every day.

Rosetta Aperitivo
Rosetta Aperitivo

Opening just in time for Vivid, Burger Project Black Label is also located in the Grosvenor Place precinct making it an ideal pit-stop for Vivid-goers hoping for a quick fix. A deluxe burger menu, house-made salads, gourmet chips and dips are available to eat in or take away. Harbour-side Vivid goers can head down to Fratelli Fresh Darling Harbour, which will open just in time for Vivid, and grab themselves a take-away picnic basket, or sit and enjoy views from the beer garden. Happy Hour kicks off from 4pm every weekday, with $5 negronis, martinis, spritzes and pizzas. Fratelli is also offering a delicious three-course set menu ($40pp) and bottomless cocktails ($29pp) every Friday, Saturday and Sunday throughout the month. Fratelli Macquarie Street, Bridge Street, Westfield and Walsh Bay are other great Vivid locations.

Burger Project's Spicy Fried Chicken Katsu with chips & Young Henry's beer
Burger Project’s Spicy Fried Chicken Katsu with chips & Young Henry’s beer

Jade Temple, located in and amongst all the Vivid light action, is opening early from 5pm for à la carte dining. A three-course Vivid set menu ($45pp) is also available until 6pm, every day. It includes a cocktail on arrival, choice of three entrees, three mains, and a duck egg custard spring roll for dessert.

Inner city and Circular Quay
Before seeing the lights, take advantage of Spice Temple’s $12 cocktail hour specials. Every weekday from 4pm to 6pm, guests can choose from a selection of $12 Zodiac cocktails, $9 house wines, and $7 beers. Customers can also explore the bar menu featuring five exquisite $12 noodle dishes available every day, as well as à la carte options, from an earlier opening time of 5pm. A three-course Vivid set menu ($49pp) is also on offer.

Rockpool Bar & Grill has created a stunning, Vivid inspired Margarita ($19). The Bubblegum Patrón Tequila is shaken with bespoke myrtle shrub and fresh lemon juice, topped with a plume of native mint bubbles. In addition to a beautiful à la carte menu, a three-course Vivid set menuis available, and will be served from the early opening time of 5pm. All day dining will also be available from the bar, with a special offer of wood fire grilled cheeseburger with house pickle and lager ($22).

Rockpool Bar & Grill
Rockpool Bar & Grill

Overlooking Circular Quay and offering one of the best seats in Sydney to see the lights, Bar Patrón by Rockpool has added a special gin & tonic to the menu. The G&T&T ($19) combines grapefruit, tequila, tonic and fresh lime, and is available throughout Vivid. Guests can dine à la carte, or from a four-course Vivid set menu available from the early opening time of 5pm.

The Rocks
Saké Restaurant & Bar will open earlier than usual from 5pm, and serve its usual à la carte options, as well as an exclusive Vivid set menu ($55pp) including Hiramasa kingfish, prawn shumai, shiokoji chicken and tofu cheesecake. The Cut Bar & Grill also has a Vivid pre-light offer ($59pp), available from the early opening time of 5pm. Pre-Vivid diners will also be given a house-made chocolate biscuit to take away.

Saké Fried Prawn Shumai with spicy mayo & chives
Saké Fried Prawn Shumai with spicy mayo & chives

The Argyle has teamed up with Belvedere Vodka to bring guests Light The Night, Friday, 25 May. Dance music icons, The Potbelleez, will take to the stage, and the venue will be transformed into an adult playground with a dazzling light-show makeover. Doors open at 7pm and entry is free before 9pm. Take advantage of the happiest hours of the week next door at El Camino Cantina, with $7.50 Margaritas, craft beers, house tequila and house wine from Monday to Friday between 5-7pm. This late-night hangout has its own fluorescent light show 365 days of the year, making it the perfect Vivid dining destination.

The Argyle
The Argyle

For more information and bookings:

**Information & Images Supplied Courtesy of Rockpool Dining Group – Georgie Meredith

*Title Photo: El Camino ‘Rita’

Fratelli - Aperol
Fratelli – Aperol

Connie Lambeth

The Australia Times News

Editor GOURMET – Food/Wine/Events

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Bar Patron by Rockpool
Bar Patrón by Rockpool
Rosetta - Terrace
Rosetta – Terrace

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The Bavarian Rouse Hill Launched in Greater Western Sydney This Week

The Bavarian Rouse Hill – Sydney Are you ready Rouse Hill? The Bavarian has brought its legendary, family-friendly dining, unrivalled range of Bavarian food and beers, and sports-centric entertainment to Greater Western Sydney this week. The Bavarian Rouse Hill is located in the town Centre shopping precinct and boasts 350 seats, including outdoor seating for around … Read more


JOHNNY DI FRANCESCO NAMED OFFICIAL AMBASSADOR OF EAT STREET – MELBOURNE Johnny Di Francesco, world champion pizzaiolo and owner of Melbourne’s Gradi Group of restaurants, is excited to announce he has been named official ambassador for Eat Street Melbourne 2018. As Ambassador, Johnny is dedicated to helping a great cause, through great food – adding … Read more


In line with Sydney’s drinkers becoming more sophisticated, far more travelled and knowledgeable, gone are the days where bars can offer cheap drinks at awkward or limited times and expect customers to flock in and fill their bars.  Today more than ever, customer service is about better understanding customer’s needs and meeting those needs at … Read more


Winter warmers: Southgate restaurants are serving up seasonal delights with a series of masterclasses, meet-the-maker events, and innovative new dishes and drinks

*Title Photo: Pure South’s King Island pasture fed wallaby, parsnip, native pepperberry sauce – Photo credit: Pure South Dining

As the colder months approach, Southgate restaurants are keeping Melburnians warm with new menus integrating the best local and regional produce, limited edition specialty drinks and dishes, and a range of foodie events including makers dinners, regional foodie fests, opera nights and Mother’s Day high teas.

 Innovative winter menus incorporate some of the best seasonal produce to create indulgent meals, with new offerings providing the perfect excuse to revisit a favourite Southgate venue, or discover a new haunt amongst the 13-strong staple of restaurants, bars and cafes.

 Melbourne’s beloved risotteria, the award winning Tutto Bene, is adding six new dishes that deliver a taste of winter to their menu. Hot picks include the Finocchio, a roast baby fennel with snap fried khol rabi and the Pannacotta di gianduia, a stunning hazelnut chocolate pannacotta with lemon gelato and fennel pollen. Plus of course, risotto, always risotto.

Risotto Masterclass at Tutte Bene Photo Credit: Tutte Bene
Risotto Masterclass at Tutto Bene
Photo credit: Tutto Bene

“We love working with fennel at this time of year – it grows in abundance and you can be creative with how you use it in both savoury and sweet dishes. It is such a versatile plant, with all parts being edible from bulb, stalks, leaves and seeds, while the fronds and pollen are great accents to any dish,” says Nathan.

 Tutto Bene’s risotto masterclasses are back by popular demand, on 13 June and 11 July. Clue: if you’re using Arborio, you’re doing it wrong. The event includes a take home goodie bag with all the right ingredients. Book pronto, as it’s tipped to sell out.

 Waterslide’s new cocktail list delivers some of their most creative winter-warmer concoctions yet. ‘Auntie Faye’s Cure No.23’ is inspired by the head bartender’s Auntie Faye, who would add a large measure of bourbon to her apple and rhubarb pie to cure your ailments. The cocktail version takes over 24 hours to prepare, delivering powerful punch of flavour with spiced rhubarb, apple syrup, and a hit of bourbon, topped with custard, rhubarb skins and crush. Guaranteed to kick your winter chills to the kerb.

'Aunty Faye's Cure No. 23' Cocktail -Waterslide Bar Photo Credit: Waterslide Bar
‘Aunty Faye’s Cure No. 23’ cocktail – Waterslide Bar
Photo credit: Waterslide Bar

 A commitment to provenance is something a number of Southgate chefs are passionate about, whether that means working with the best local suppliers of fresh produce, or paying homage to a specific region of the world via carefully curated local and international ingredients.

 Pure South Dining brings the best of Tasmania to the table and their extensive wine menu is perfectly curated to match the impressive food offering. During May and June, a series of wine dinners will be taking place providing the chance to sample incredible wines from bespoke Tasmanian wineries Piper’s Brook, Moorilla and Torbreck accompanied by special menus from their Michelin star chef, David Hall.

Pure South's King Island Beef Tartare, taco, daikon, avocado, finger lime Photo credit: Pure South
Pure South’s King Island Beef Tartare, taco, daikon, avocado, finger lime
Photo credit: Pure South

 BearBrass has secured the makers of three of their favourite Yarra Valley producers to attend their special ‘A Taste of the Yarra’ event on Sunday 27 May. With tastings on offer from Napoleone Beer & Cider, Four Pillars Gin and TarraWarra Estate, patrons can also enjoy a special Yarra Valley Bar Menu accompanied with live music from Rory McKenna across the afternoon.

 La Camera Southgate is bringing regional Italy to Melbourne with Gior D’Italia. Friendly chefs will lead diners through a culinary tour, using their daily specials as their flavour passport. Each week in May a different region will take the spotlight with a selection of delicious meals showcasing the unique elements of the selected district. It’s a tour of Italy with a view of the Yarra River.

La Camera’s Opera Nights have become a fixture on the calendar for many, combining culture and cuisine in one electrifying evening. The next event takes place on Monday 28 May, when the souring voices of Samantha Du Rennes, Suzanne Shakespere, Lino Del Giudice and Richard Thomas will come together to give the ultimate wine and dine experience, enjoyed over a set three course menu.

 Waterslide is hosting a bevy of special events throughout the cooler months, including their own Waterslide Gin & Tonic Appreciation Day on Thursday 3 May and Waterslide’s Rum Day on Thursday 14 June. June will also see the return of their (literally) hot ‘Fitzroy Hipster’ cocktail, back by popular demand. Available for a limited time only, the delicious combination of spiced whipped butter and rum is Waterslide’s take on the classic Hot Buttered Rum and is guaranteed to warm you up from the inside out.

 Pure South Dining is hosting a unique King Island Degustation Dinner on 1 June, celebrating the world-renowned produce from the island’s wild shores and seas. The intimate dinner will showcase some of the restaurant’s most remote, and in some cases exclusive, suppliers from King Island’s farms, dairies and fisherman. For example, the newly available King Island wallaby is now on the Pure South menu, but cannot be found anywhere else on the mainland.

Sunday blues are a thing of the past thanks to the continuing ‘Free Flowing Champagne Sunday Lunch’ at Pure South Dining. Enjoyed with either a two or three course lunch, Pure South will be rotating the bubbles with Mumm Cordon Rouge Brut, Bollinger Special Cuvee and Moet & Chandon Brut Imperial. Sunday afternoons never looked so good.

 Southgate is home to fifteen diverse restaurants, bars and eateries with cuisines ranging from German to Tasmanian to modern European. A range of boutique retailers including vintage fashion, books and stationery can also be found within the precinct.

Tutto Bene's Finocchio Photo credit: Tutto Bene
Tutto Bene’s Finocchio
Photo credit: Tutto Bene

**Information and Images Courtesy of Southgate restaurants/supplied by Fuller PR – Keryn O’Donnell & Keshia Hutchens

P.J.O'Briens Winter Seafood Chowder Photo credit: P.J.O'Brien's
P.J.O’Briens Winter Seafood Chowder
Photo credit: P.J.O’Brien’s

Connie Lambeth

The Australia Times News

Editor GOURMET – Food/Wine/Events

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Melbourne’s iconic gastro pub Collins Quarter recently welcomed new head chef Luke Headon, who has returned to Australia from an eight-year stint in Europe working at renowned restaurants including The Fat Duck and Story London. Diners can still expect seasonal dishes, but with a creative approach. Luke’s new menu includes the likes of duck breast with … Read more


National Pretzel Day – Sydney Melbourne Brisbane It’s National Pretzel Day on Thursday 26th April and Munich Bavarian and The Bavarian have taken their legendary pretzels to the next level. For one day only these hand-crafted salted morsels will be served with a mouth-watering side of beer flavoured cheese dipping sauce ($6). Beer cheese dip … Read more


 Winemakers of Rutherglen Situated in Victorian Murray River country and protected by the Great Dividing Range, Rutherglen is a picturesque, easy three-hour drive from Melbourne, four-hour drive from Canberra or six-hour drive from Sydney; but is also easily accessible by air from Albury airport. The region offers visitors an effortlessly authentic wine experience and a … Read more


SYDNEY – Tim Tam Margarita or Vegemite Pizza Anyone? Rockpool Dining Group’s casual restaurants are super-sizing Australia Day with extended celebrations that include BBQ snags and steins of beer and limited-edition menu items, including Tim Tam Margaritas and Vegemite pizzas.  Fratelli Fresh has a limited-edition Vegemite pizza ($16) available at all seven restaurants from Monday … Read more