Hospitality empire Rockpool Dining Group has announced it will cease operating its restaurants from Monday March 23. It overseas 85 venues, including Fratelli Fresh, Bavarian, Rockpool Bar & Grill, Spice Temple, El Camino Cantina and Saké, in cities Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. It is also closing its successful burger chain Burger Project.

It shared the news via its social media channels today and follows on from the Australia government's decision to force restaurants, cafes and bars to stop trading, except for take-away, to combat coronavirus.

The only venue to continue trading is Sydney's Fratelli Fresh, which is now offering a "Grocer and Home Chef" service, where you can order ready-made meals and grocery items to be delivered.

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The statement was short but ended by saying, "We thank all our guest, suppliers and staff for their support during this difficult time, and send our best wishes for everyone's health and wellbeing."

This comes on the back of the early March news that said Neil Perry would be parting ways with the Urban Purveyor Group, which in 2016 acquired Neil Perry’s hospitality business. The split will take a bit of time, up to two months to take affect, but once it does Perry will take the premium restaurants, including Rockpool Bar & Grill, Spice Temple, Rosetta and R Bar, with his new company to be called Rockpool Group.

The remainder of the business will be run by its existing executive team and renamed Pacific Concepts. That company will retain casual eateries Saké Restaurant & Bar, The Cut, Bar Patrón, Fratelli Fresh, El Camino Cantina, The Bavarian, Munich Brauhaus, Beerhaüs, Winghaus by Bavarian and The Argyle.