During its first month of trade in 1995, Hurricane’s Bondi Beach sold a single burger. “It was so scary,” founder Tony Teixeira tells Broadsheet. “We had maybe 10 customers a day and we had to pay rent, cover our overheads, make an income. But over time, it picked up and we got more confident.”
Since then, that confidence has seen him part ways with his co-founder and open five locations across Sydney and Surfers Paradise, the newest of which is in Cronulla. His ex-business partner also runs three separate Hurricane’s restaurants.
Like all Hurricane’s venues, the Cronulla eatery has a core menu of lamb and pork ribs in house-made sauces, plus steaks and burgers. Dry-ageing is unique to Cronulla, with a 1.5-kilogram tomahawk, a Tajima Wagyu sirloin and a Great Southern Pinnacle Scotch fillet all on the menu. Seafood is also in the spotlight.
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“We really wanted to focus on local seafood at Cronulla,” says Teixeira. “On the raw bar we’ve got Sydney rock oysters, kingfish ceviche and scallops crudo, and for entrees there are Hervey Bay scallops with lime, miso and garlic burnt butter; grilled king prawns; and a beautiful seafood platter that comes with a whole lobster.”
The beachside 300-seater is the first restaurant Teixeira has opened since the pandemic. The fit-out nods to the Mediterranean, specifically Teixeira’s home country, Portugal. The colour palette is muted, with shades of olive, blush and cream, and timber seating that accents the curved sandstone and natural plaster on the walls. “We wanted our customers to feel like they’re sitting in a restaurant in Spain or Portugal,” says Teixeira. The Mediterranean is well-represented on the wine list as well, with a solid list of European drops, as well as Australian and Californian varietals.
Hurricane’s Bondi restaurant just celebrated its 28th birthday, and as the new Cronulla team finds its feet, Teixeira is philosophical. “I was a lot younger when we opened – opening that first venue was so exciting. I didn’t know what was going to happen next, and I never expected to be where I am today.”
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