For the month of March, the former GTV9 studios on Bendigo Street in Richmond will become The Richmond Weekender. The weekender, a project by Right Angle Studios, is designed to tantalise and embrace potential buyers and explorers of the StudioNine project, which will eventually see the much-loved building, built in 1908, become heritage apartments. In the interim, there’s lots going on at the site.
To kick things off with the opening this Saturday (March 3) is a Homemakers Market, curated by The Thousands, featuring a round-up of stallholders including Architext, CIBI, By Joost, Rooftop Honey, Tokyo Bike, mud Australia, Mr Kitly and other smart urban designers, retailers and craftspeople.
But the mainstay is the boys from Collingwood’s Cavallero, Kent Bell and Rob Cattanach, who are behind food at Graham Canteen (named after TV icon Graham Kennedy) and are using the space as a platform for their concept, Fancy Hank’s Bar-B-Que that will be a movable canteen with wines, beers and generous, approachable dishes such as beef brisket and pulled pork shoulder. “We got an opportunity to try out something we’ve been thinking about for a while,” says Bell when asked why they’re doing what they’re doing. “As a restaurateur you don’t often get opportunities like this.”
Fancy Hank’s, named after a friend of the pair, will be at the Bendigo Street site for the five weekends in March, filling the role of an old-school canteen. Line up with a tray for southern American style fare of salads and buy meat by the weight. “There’s not an a la carte menu,” says Bell. “Tell us how much brisket or how many ribs you want and you’ll pay for it by the weight. This way we’re providing good food at a realistic price point.”
There are plans to open the venture in car parks in the evenings and other spaces that can fit tables and chairs for customers tucking into the slow-cooked dishes. In the meantime, Graham Canteen will be open for breakfast and lunch through March, with other drawcards to The Weekender including Speakeasy Cinema, whch will be screening a site specific film selection on Saturday nights, with popcorn, ice cream and drinks available from the Canteen.
It’s an exciting development over in Richmond. See you there this weekend!