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New Greek taverna eyes Howard Smith Wharves

Jonathan Barthelmess

Restaurateur Jonathan Barthelmess (The Apollo Sydney/ Tokyo and Cho Cho San) is bringing his contemporary interpretation of the Greek taverna to the north, with the opening of GRECA in Brisbane later this year.

Located beneath the Story Bridge, inside the revitalised, heritage listed Howard Smith Wharves – GRECA will share Barthelmess’s philosophy of uncomplicated food, great wine and generosity in abundance.

“When a space became available on Howard Smith Wharves, the opportunity was too good to say no,” says Barthelmess. “The positioning of the site and the incredible energy surrounding the development created the perfect chance for me to come back to my home state and introduce something evolved and different — a new village by the water.”

Inspired by the Mediterranean way of life, and the pleasures of eating together, the menu will celebrate the simplicity of traditional Greek flavours, in dishes designed to share. Applying a light touch to the best local produce from land and sea, food is cooked over wood and fire and in stone baked ovens.

Following the success of The Apollo (Sydney, Tokyo) and Cho Cho San (Sydney), Barthelmess will again collaborate with childhood friend and interior architect George Livissianis, to reimagine the heritage warehouse space as a timeless, indoor-outdoor trattoria.

Embracing the warmer climate, tables will spill out into the open air, while core timber components are retained in the spartan interior, brought to life with Mediterranean whites, polished concrete floors and simple furnishings. The restaurant’s open kitchen and fire pit will balance the atmosphere of a raucous family kitchen with the type of casual yet educated service that Barthelmess is known for.

Serving the type of Greek food you want to cook at home, the vision for GRECA is one of generosity, where food is fresh and abundant. Lovers of The Apollo will delight in knowing that a number of its original dishes have been ‘re-mixed’ uniquely for the new restaurant.

GRECA will take bookings and be open for exclusive use events from December 2018.

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