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From the minds behind Liminal and Common Ground Project comes this after-work go-to for cocktails and clever contemporary bites.
By Libby Curran
January 21, 2020
By Libby Curran
January 21, 2020

In 2019, The Mulberry Group (founders and past owners of The Kettle BlackTop Paddock and Higher Ground) gifted Melbourne with four stunning venues: Liminal in the CBD, Geelong's road trip-worthy Common Ground Project, and contemporary inner-city diner Hazel with its late-night basement sibling Dessous.

Hazel graces two levels of the 1920s T&G Building at 164 Flinders Lane, with a kitchen helmed by chefs Brianna Smith (Rockpool Bar & Grill, Spice Temple) and Oliver Edwards (The Builders Arms, Cumulus Inc), who are cooking with a woodfired grill and oven both fuelled by Australian-grown ironbark.

Pete Dillon

Expect small bites like pig's head croquettes ($7) and whole duck pate en croute with quince mustard ($24), alongside larger plates like the wood-grilled seafood stew ($45) and a wood-roasted pork chop with cumquat ($46). Scotch fillet might be teamed with wakame butter ($58), house-made halloumi is served with fennel pollen ($16) and brussels sprouts are brought to life with preserved lemon cream and hazelnuts ($24). There are myriad things to tempt snackers and feasters alike.

With over 120 bottles, the wine selection has decidedly broad appeal and is backed by a lineup of local brews and an unfussy handful of cocktails. Try the bergamot negroni ($24), a davidson plum-infused spritz ($19) and the Black Forest Milk Punch ($22).

Meanwhile, the light-filled space is also primed for lingering — award-winning interior design firm The Stella Collective has left its mark with a restrained but elegant mix of gentle curves, natural linens and polished floors. And, after you're done with dinner, you can head downstairs to Dessous for a nightcap — it's open until 11pm.

Kate Shanasy

Pete Dillon

Top Images: Pete Dillon.

Updated Friday, September 9, 2022.


Appears in:

The Best Restaurants in Melbourne for 2023

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