Last night, what started as a small kitchen fire at St Kilda’s Stokehouse took hold of the landmark beachfront restaurant, and over five hours burnt the two storey building to the ground.
Time Out worked closely with the staff and crew of the Van Haandel group earlier last year, holding our first ever Time Out Taste Test at the Stokehouse, and later, our inaugural Food Awards at Trocadero, and so we’re saddened by the tragic loss for all who know and love the restaurant, especially owner Frank Van Haandel for whom the St Kilda venue was especially important.
Thankfully, the dinner service had ended and floor staff were able to evacuate everyone from the venue. We’re also cheered to hear that Van Haandel intends to start on plans to rebuild as soon as Monday.… Read more
After many engineering difficulties – and nearly five years after it was shut down – the Southern Star Observation Wheel today reopened as the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. As well as offering a bird’s-eye view of the city, there’s a new educational aspect: through displays and audio you’ll hear all about the history, culture and eccentricities of Melbourne.
There are some special Christmas activities planned, so get the family down to Docklands to be entertained by music, face painters and “other surprises” between the following hours:
Monday, December 23: 11.45am – 4.45pm
Tuesday, December 24: 10am – 3pm
Thursday, December 26: 11am – 4pm
Environment minister Greg Hunt has reneged on his promise to send a boat to monitor the whaling season in the Southern Ocean.
In a move that won’t surprise Sea Shepherd, Hunt now intends to send an A319 aircraft, staffed by Customs personnel, which will “send a clear message that the Australian government expects all parties to abide by the laws of the sea”.
Also, the intended ship is tied up rounding up boat people.
A plane can sporadically monitor proceedings, but is not equipped to prevent any violent clashes between Japanese whalers and Sea Shepherd ships, nor witness all developments.
When Labor were in power, Hunt put pressure on them on three occasions to send a ship to monitor whaling – and so now Greens are calling on him to resign.
To quote Captain Siddharth Chakravarty, who Time Out Melbourne interviewed just before the Steve Irwin and Bob Barker set sale from Melbourne, “The Australian Government has made this statement many times – it’s always a promise that’s made pre-election. The last vessel that went down was over a decade ago. Since then, Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard and now Tony Abbott have promised one but not delivered. What’s worse is it’s patrolling the waters for asylum seekers, when something that’s a Federal Court ruling that bans the Japanese from taking whales should be a much bigger cause for the government.”
Ahhh… we do not like reporting more bad news for local music festivals, but there’s been two big hits in about as many days. First Blur announced they were pulling out of the Big Day Out, writing on their Facebook page: “Only 8 weeks to go, the band feels that with the constantly shifting goalposts and challenging conditions of the organisers, they can’t let it drag on any longer and want to make this announcement, to be clear to Blur fans that they won’t be there. We’ve done our very best to work with the organisers and considered every option to make it happen, but they’ve let us down and let everyone else down too.”
And now Dog Blood will no longer be performing at Stereosonic, after one half of the duo – DJ Sonny Moore, aka Skrillex – pulled out. According to a statement from Stereosonic: “Sonny Moore of Dog Blood has expressed his regret towards the announcement: ‘Due to unfortunate circumstances that are beyond my control, I won’t be able to make the Dog Blood Stereosonic dates this year. For the record, I love the Stereosonic team and the One Love crew who puts on these events and this has nothing to do with them on their side.’”
In ‘Some Solace’ news: Dog Blood’s other half, Alex Ridha, will perform as Boys Noize at the festival.… Read more
So last week we had a little ‘this looks promising’ rant about Thomas Olive cocktail bar, which opened above Saint Crispin last Wednesday. Now we would like to upgrade that to straight lunatic rave about just how good it is. You’re escorted up the perilous stairs, and James Tait, he of the gentle Scottish brogue and nice neat hair, is shaking up some of the finest classic French cocktails in town. There’s an Alouette, which sees gin and rum (together at last!), given a refreshing kick in the pants by grapefruit and a little orange bitters, and he’s got a whole menu of potent anis for diluting with a dash of water into a manageable aperitif. Snack-wise, the charcuterie board is a festival of dried and cured meats, only improved by getting a bowl of big crunchy pork skin crackers and using them as a meat raft for your biltong and boiled quail eggs. Get in while the getting is good.
In other news on Smith Street – boulevard of dreams – the folks behind Brunswick Street Alimentari have swung open the doors to their new place just next to Gorski and Jones. Inside it’s a long, tiled room of house-made and neatly packaged Italian eats that you can ram in your handbag and pretend you made yourself.… Read more
Sweet dreams are made of gelato. And all your dessert-based dreams are going to come true at 5pm when Gelato Messina swings open its doors in Fitzroy. If the queues that still form outside its Sydney outlets are anything to go by, we’re thinking you may want to don your riot gear tonight before lining up for a scoop of the incredible salted coconut and mango – it’s like a holiday in a cone. If you barrack for team chocolate don’t leave without a scoop of milk chocolate with peanut fudge and if you’re really a dessert freak, a scoop of their best-selling Bounty – coconut milk gelato with chocolate chips and desiccated coconut.
That’s what we’re expecting when the hotly anticipated burger shack opens at 11.30am today. It’s still absolute chaos on Smith Street outside Huxtaburger every weekend, and the north side contingent has had two years to weary of the soft-bunned, ketchup and mustard slicked wagyu burgers. Here’s a little something they put together to get you even more ready to punch thy neighbour in a burger seeking frenzy.
It’s all happening, Melbourne. Or more to the point, not a lot has been happening of late which makes all of the things that are about to happen Something Of Note.
Strange Wolf, the inner-city burger joint and bar that lived up to its name courtesy of decorations made from hair, has reached the end of its lease and shut up shop. The owners (who also captain the Grace Darling in Collingwood), have taken over the Star next door to the pub and are planning on turning it into a pizza palace with the punniest names in town with the help of the boys from A Boy Named Sue in St Andrews.
The Town Mouse has been kicking arse and taking names with its delicate share plates and red hot kiwi hospitality all year, and now they’ve finally finished work on their courtyard out the back so you can take your blushing G and Ts in the sun. Boom.
And while we’re on the topic of raging hot restaurants of note, Scott Pickett and Joe Grbac are launching phase two of their whimsical mod-Oz eatery Saint Crispin. You might not have known about the beautiful old room upstairs at Cavallero (they mostly used it for functions), but you’re about to get acquainted with it under the bar name of Thomas Olive.… Read more
This folks, is a big one. In her first official visit to Australia, Burmese activist and 2015 Myanmar presidential candidate Aung San Suu Kyi will speak in Melbourne.
Aung San Suu Kyi, who founded the National League for Democracy, spent 15 years under house arrest until being released in 2010, and recently announced she would seek the presidency of Myanmar in two years. If you want to take advantage of this chance to hear one of the world’s most significant political figures, get in quickly.
Calling all Sci-Fi fans (and trendy-magazine-editors-who-just-enjoy-the-escapism-that-scifi-offers-so-stop-judging-us): the TARDIS (Time and Relative Dimensions in Space, thank you very much) is materialising for a short time only in the hip and geek-friendly suburb of Richmond. The new Doctor Who pop-up store will offer all the essentials (stacks of Dr Who DVDs, basically) as well as some charming add-ons – Cyberman tea-towel anyone? Plus you can get your photo with a Dalek! Get there before we buy the whole place out.