Glebe's heritage-listed tram sheds are being transformed into a European-style market hall. Last week we met with a few of the most exciting restaurants opening this week. Here are some of the others.
Joel Humphreys, chef and co-owner of Bodega 1904 What it will look like: It will look like a cross between the tapas bars in Barcelona's La Boqueria [market] and a diner.
What it will taste like: The similarities between this and the original Bodega is the tapas dining format. The food will be different, though. Myself, Ben [Milgate] and Elvis [Abrahanowicz] have collaborated together on it. It's inspiration from Spain and Latin America while showcasing Australian produce. We're working with smaller producers and we're really trying to promote that market feel of the Tramsheds itself. We're curing all of our own meats, doing lots of preserves [and baking their own bread]. Those will all be available at the bar; we've got a really long bar that covers one side of the whole restaurant.
What else he’s looking forward to: The whole thing is amazing. Jared [Ingersol]'s set up at Butcher and the Farmer is incredible. Dust is incredible. Gelato Messina is always amazing. I’m pretty overwhelmed with the amount of talent coming in.
On the tram sheds and food precincts: I think it's really exciting to do this style of tapas bar in the market in a new food precinct. Also the wine cellar – we’ve sourced wine from all over the world from small producers. That's going to be available wholesale.
Eugenio Maiale, chef and owner of Flour Eggs Water What it will look like: It’s an open kitchen. There'll be a long cook line that starts off where we make all our own pastas, the pastas go down to our chefs, they cook them and then serve to our customers. They'll be sitting underneath a pergola. It's a beautiful timber feature; we've used different types of timbers to emulate different kinds of pasta shapes.
Customers will be sitting at wooden tables and benches and on beautiful terracotta-brick floors. There'll be lots of greenery. It'll be like eating under a vine.
What it will taste like: We’re doing what we love the most, which is the art and craft of artisan-made pasta. We're using traditional techniques with ingredients that we have in Australia. We're just trying to produce the best handmade, hand-extruded pasta we can.
What else he’s looking forward to: I know most of the operators here and I strongly believe in them. I’m excited about how far we can go with the market vibe. Having local producers come in to showcase their wares and using the space to promote those people organically.
Plans at Artisan Lane (a shared collaborative and educational space): I would like to see it turn into a pop-up where we can encourage young chefs to do a little restaurant. Even if it runs for a month or two weeks, it would be really good experience for young chefs before they open a business.
On the tram sheds and food precincts: I really don't think there's anything like this in Sydney. Even in Australia; just the ambience and the heritage of the place. What a clever use of space, these tram sheds were buried for years. When I saw the vision for it, I really wanted to be a part of it.
Cesare Salemi, baker and owner Dust What it will look like: It's going to be classy industrial. There'll be beautiful travertine [a type of limestone] display benches. I've got an Austrian stone mill I've called Heidi; the sift is called Agatha. We've got a 2,5000-brick oven I've called The Boss. We want people to be able to look through the glass and see the whole process.
What it will taste like: We want to showcase the grain, gently mill it; try to keep as much nutrition as possible.
Where possible we’ve tried to source [non-standard] grains. We know the farmers and we know the process the grain has gone through to get to us. We've even got a wood oven. We’re aiming to make a village loaf with a beautiful pre-1960s historic grain. There’ll only be a few of them.
I love the rawness and humbleness of food, so one of the items will be just bone marrow and rye cooked in the wood-fired oven. There'll be a bunch of pizzas that we'll naturally ferment. It’ll be food that touches your soul. That’s what I’m about.
What else he’s looking forward to: Eugenio [Flour Pasta Water] is going to be amazing. Butcher and Farmer has carcasses hanging in the window getting smoked. I’ve had a great conversation with Ed [Cutcliffe] at Garçon about coffee and doing something. Fish and Co, we've talked about doing something. Imagine having a fish dipped in a sustainable-flour batter? It's a beautiful network of people to work with. This is a special place and everyone is going to another level.
On the tram sheds and food precincts: I’ve had so many opportunities to open something, but to come back into the industry it had to be something special [since selling his bakery ten years ago Salemi has been working as a consultant in the corporate side of hospitality]. This is something really special. How many buildings in Sydney are this old and raw? This is the perfect place for me to showcase the history of bread.