The corner of Chapel and Grosvenor streets in South Yarra – across from the Temperance Hotel – will look significantly different come September.
What’s in the works is a new Italian mega-venue called Stella, which will sprawl across four storeys of a late-1800s building. Think of it like Her, but for the south side.
In the basement, there’ll be a 10-person private dining room in a wine cellar (which will be filled with reserve drops). Moving to street level, you’ll find the centrepiece, circular pizza bar – riffing on traditional trattorias – with a blazing Marana Forni pizza oven and house-made pastas. On the first floor will be a luxe bar with a fireplace, and one level up will be the main drawcard: a sun-drenched rooftop terrace with a lush vertical garden.
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Behind the new venue is Ali Mousavi, whose father owned Italian restaurants for more than 40 years. He’s recruited ex-400 Gradi chef John Park to lead the kitchen, while the space has been designed in by Finn Warnock of Sum and branding whiz Nick Cox of Projects of Imagination.
“Stella, named after my daughter, will be a destination that combines Italian hospitality and culture with a modern Australian take,” Mousavi said in a statement. He wants it to become a “neighbourhood local – familiar, welcoming and known for dishing up delicious Italian fare”.
Stella is slated to open at 427 Chapel Street, South Yarra in September.