Ms Tips had a momentary shudder this morning upon reading in The Australian this morning that Rockpool’s closure was due at the end of the month.
“Our motivations to close Rockpool and open Eleven Bridge [at Bridge Street Sydney] are varied but the most significant is that we have two Rockpool restaurants in close proximity (referring to Rockpool Bar & Grill) and we have at least 100 guests turn up to the wrong one every month,” Rockpool’s Neil Perry told the Oz’s John Lethlean. Instead, the new eatery at Eleven Bridge would move away from the “traditional concept of fine dining”, with a more affordable menu.
Naturally, Crikey’s (non-existent) expenses budget has never covered trips to Sydney’s finer dining districts, but we in the bunker have enjoyed living vicariously through the Fin’s Rear Window segment, which mentions Rockpool so often it’s dubbed it Global HQ. It can seem like no Sydney business figure worth their salt dines anywhere else. According to former Rear Window (now Margin Call) scribe Will Glasgow, yesterday there was no less weighty a clientele than Maurice Newman dining with Mark Scott, former Qantas exec Simon Hickey with current exec Olivia Wirth (with husband Paul Howes making an appearance), and Southern Cross Austereo exec Guy Dobson with Rove McManus. The closure of Rockpool would surely put a big dent in Rear Window’s coverage.
We asked Rear Window’s Joe Aston how he was taking the news. “Everyone should remain calm”, he told us — Global HQ is actually Rockpool Bar & Grill at the corner of Hunter and Bligh Streets, and so would remain unscathed (the original Rockpool, which is closing and relocating with a new name and menu but the same chef, is referred to at Rear Window as “the Mothership”).
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“The Australian (Financial Review) way of life will continue. And I’ll be having a word to my cousins at Good Food about their scaremongering!”