The Cannery is at the retail epicentre of the increasingly vibrant suburb of Rosebery in Sydney’s inner south.
Now a hub for local talent, the handsome 11,000-square-metre converted warehouse space started life as a production site for Rosella Preserving and Manufacturing Company. It then became an Aristocrat Poker Machines warehouse before beginning its transformation into The Cannery in 2000. (The industrial estate was divided into two smaller precincts – the Saporium and The Cannery – before the utilitarian block was united into one project recently.)
Start your exploring with a gin cocktail among rose-gold distilling drums at Archie Rose. You can also learn how it’s all done with a tour. If vino is more your thing, visit The Drink Hive, which has informed staff and a well-curated collection of minimum-intervention wines and craft spirits. This was the first bottle shop in Sydney with refillable beer and wine stations.
For dessert or a coffee, pop around the corner to Black Star Pastry, where you can order one of its signature watermelon cakes. You’ll also find CoHouse studio (a co-working space); the ever-buzzy and sweaty F45 Gym; and Wholefoods House, where you can pick up vegan laksa pastes, fist-sized organic passion fruits and goat-milk haloumi.
At The Cannery’s core, though, are its food offerings. You’ll find well-established restaurants such as Da Mario, which has been slinging ricotta- and salami-loaded woodfired pizzas since 2013; and Three Blue Ducks, which sees the coastal cafe get some warehouse edge; it’s in the space formerly used by Kitchen By Mike.
Then there’s freshly opened gems such as Banh Xeo, where you can get coconut-milk and turmeric-spiked Vietnamese pancakes. Behind the operation is Benjamin Sinfield of Ester, Fred’s and London’s renowned St John, which is where he met his partner (now both in business and in life) Tanio Ho.
There’s the good-looking casual fine-diner Stanton and Co (by The Parlour Group (Riley Street Garage, Surly’s, The Village Inn), named after Richard Stanton, the property developer responsible for turning the area into an industrial suburb in the early 1900s.
The Cannery retains many of its original architectural features. You can see this in the building’s heavy masonry construction, sawtooth roof, concrete flooring and rusticated pilasters dividing the building into bays. Some of the walls have the original paint on them.
While architectural enthusiasts will marvel at its bones, interior enthusiasts will appreciate the building’s design go-to store Koskela. Established in 2000, the Australian timber furniture and design-savvy hub sells beautifully designed pieces and homewares. Here you’ll also find workshops run by local creatives, including block printing, weaving and dying.
More over, the precinct is continuing to home in on creative up-skilling and education as a reason to visit. Megan Morton The School hosts classes in watercolour painting; interior design and décor; and even Instagramming. And the Vive Cooking School – which sits in a glass box in the centre of the building – offers pasta-making and macaron-making classes.
The Cannery will keep growing. Along with more food and drinks spots there are plans to launch a monthly market in 2018, making weekend visits even more tempting.