Henley Beach fixture Joe’s is opening after dark for the first time in its 25-year history.
The Esplanade eatery is introducing dinners from today (October 8) with a new feed-me menu available from 5.45pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings.
It’ll feature the “very best of South Australian seafood”, says co-owner Hugo Pedler. The $60 set menu offers Coffin Bay oysters and Hiramasa kingfish tartare to start, followed by Port Lincoln cockle pasta and South Australian snapper fillet served with crisp potatoes. A ‘Joe’s Affogato’ is served for dessert, with vanilla gelato from neighbouring Bottega Gelateria, espresso, “Boujee crumble” and Bailey’s.
Executive chef Krish Dutt has overseen the changes, alongside head chef Tava Ravarua. They’ve also introduced a pared down lunchtime menu for $49, swapping out the snapper and potatoes for a fish taco and removing the dessert. A kiosk menu is also available featuring beer battered fish 'n' chips, salt and pepper calamari and a bucket of Spencer Gulf King Prawns.
“Joe’s is an iconic kiosk and the idea was to keep the intention of the kiosk but push the envelope,” Pedler says. “We are using all local producers and really making the protein and the fish elements in the dishes the hero, and allowing great SA seafood to speak for itself.
“That’s important to us, as well as having a really relaxed environment for people to enjoy it in.”
The wine list features approachable SA drops – think KT riesling, Koerner vermentino, Brash Higgins cabernet franc and Ashton Hills pinot noir – while the cocktail menu sticks to the classics: Mimosas, Pina Coladas, Espresso Martinis, Mojitos and Margaritas.
The introduction of dinner service is the latest change for the venue, which Pedler (who also part-owns West Oak Hotel, Super Bueno and Lion Arts Factory) bought into last year. This came after it was purchased from original owner Joe Weber in 2017, by Cibo Espresso founder and Royal Croquet Club investor Roberto Cardone and business partner Mark Balnaves.
Under Pedler’s direction, the venue has had a refresh – with new furniture, cosy booths and concrete countertops among the cosmetic changes. “It’s a dash of Noosa, a dash of the Hamptons, and a big dash of Kiosk,” Pedler told Broadsheet at the time.
The changes have attracted a younger crowd and positioned the diner as a destination rather than a casual pitstop. It's part of a wider revival for the area, which has seen new operators – like Blue Rose – moving in.
“Henley Beach has come a long way with new operators opening places around the Square and it’s great to see Henley take a step forward as a location in SA,” Pedler says.
“To have the ability to go for a swim then come up and have an Aperol Spritz and fish and chips outside – but also dress up for a special occasion or function inside, and experience some of SA’s best seafood in one of the state’s best locations, is so great.”