It has only been a year since Chris Lucas unveiled the last addition to his sprawling stable of eateries, with the three-storey Japanese Kisumé opening its doors on Flinders Lane last June.
But the acclaimed restaurateur — behind hits like Chin Chin, Kong and Hawker Hall — is already gearing up to launch his next, announcing plans for a French bistro and wine bar to open on Bourke Street before the end of the year.
Dubbed Bȃtard, the venue is set to make its home within a renovated Victorian terrace at the Spring Street end of the CBD, complete with a charming rooftop bar and basement cellar. Here, Lucas will pull inspiration from his many journeys across France, to deliver a homegrown destination for great steak, charcuterie and wine.
"I've spent a great deal of my past visiting all corners of France and like many, dreamed of having my own little bistro," explains Lucas. "I'm somewhat of a nostalgic and want to bring some of that romance to Melbourne with my own touch at Bâtard. I mean, who doesn't love steak frites with a glass of Burgundy?"
If Lucas's other venues are anything to go by, expect it to be big, bold and slightly crude — we're hoping for restaurant that rivals Sydney's much-loved Hubert.
Bȃtard is set to open its doors at 19-21 Bourke St, Melbourne, later this year. We'll keep you posted when we get an opening date.