Greenhouse goes up

On Friday, something pretty amazing happened in Sydney. A great new restaurant and bar opened on the water, in the Rocks.

Waterfront real estate has been at a premium in Sydney since the fleet arrived and pushed the natives of Bennelong of their lands.

These days, getting anything on the foreshore requires a Herculean effort and that makes the Greenhouse that much more remarkable. Perched on Dawes Point, with incredible 270 degree views of Sydney’s harbour and icons, there is just no place like it.

A creative collaboration between a Dutch architect, Joost Bakker and Melburnian hospitality hero, Jason Chan, this temporary structure is the most exciting erection Sydney has seen since the Opera House went up.

It’s a concept that’s all about the local and the sustainable.

The cladding is sourced wherever the Greenhouse turns up, as is the straw that acts as insulator. The exact materials change with the various locations and provide Joost a chance to play with sustainable materials and utilise better products as they turn up. The oil from the kitchen powers the onsite generator.

The beers, Stone Wood from Byron, Little Creatures et al are chosen for the two factors of proximity and quality. Spirits too come from Australia, Chan’s own Tradewinds Gin from Perth, and 666 Vodka from Tassie will make cocktails-a-plenty on the upstairs deck of easily the best location for a bar in this entire town. Food falls in line with the same theme; it has to come the smallest distance so it arrives fresh, and at its most delicious. The milk even comes straight from the farm in a bucket, to be processed into cheese and yoghurt in the kitchen.

The constructed frame all fits in the two orange containers that serve as the conveniences upstairs (with plastic folding tables for doors, no less) and the galley below. It has visited Perth and Melbourne already. Next it will be off to Europe, further destinations are still being finalised but the wide eyed crew who staff this ship are all awed at the journey they’re about to undertake, Milan is up next, everybody’s amped and it shines through in the service.

I’ll be back next week to sample the fare and the cocktail list, plus to take maybe a thousand photos.

The Rocks is no longer just for the tourists, get down there Sydney!

It only lasts for six weeks.

There are no bookings, so expect a wait. Expect it to be worth the wait as well.


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