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FOOD & DRINK

Cafe Freda's Is the New Restaurant, Bar and Creative Space Coming to Taylor Square

The new Oxford Street venue from the team behind Chippendale nightclub Freda's is opening this NYE.
By Samantha Teague
December 16, 2020
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Cafe Freda's Is the New Restaurant, Bar and Creative Space Coming to Taylor Square

The new Oxford Street venue from the team behind Chippendale nightclub Freda's is opening this NYE.
By Samantha Teague
December 16, 2020
  shares

Just three weeks ago we mourned the loss of Freda's, with the beloved Chippendale nightclub closing its doors after a nine-year reign. But Owner David Abram hasn't been sitting on his proverbial hands these last 21 days. In fact, he's been busy preparing to open a brand-new venue in Taylor Square.

As is clear from the name, Cafe Freda's isn't a nightclub. It's not just a cafe, either. It's a restaurant, neighbourhood bar and creative space — and it's launching this NYE with a party that runs until 2am. Okay, so maybe it's a little bit of a nightclub after all.

As well as being one of the city's best spots for a spin on the dance floor, Chippendale's Freda's was a haven of expression, art and music, and Abram says this spirit will continue at the new venue. "Freda's more than anything was about creating a bar for like minded, creative and free spirited people, and Cafe Freda's allows us to continue to do this, albeit in a slightly different format," Abram said in a statement. "We may not operate a late night dance bar and venue for the time being however culture, music, and congregation is still central to our purpose and we are excited to be pairing these ideas with some delicious food and wine on one of the world's great night-life streets"

Xinyi Lim, Carla Uriarte and David Abram

In its location on Oxford Street, Cafe Freda's will be serving up food by Head Chef Xinyi Lim, who has worked at New York restaurants Marlow & Sons and Achilles Heel, and runs Megafauna, which combines food, art and social justice. The food will be reflective of Xinyi's Chinese Malaysian heritage and driven by seasonal and locally sourced produce. The wine list, by Restaurant Leo's Darcy Creenaune Ellis, will focus on minimal-intervention drops from smaller producers across Australia and the globe, and a cocktail list will star spritzes and margaritas.

You'll be eating and drinking surrounded by playful hues, upcycled elements from the OG nightclub and handcrafted pieces by artist and Abram's partner Carla Uriarte. In her role as creative and marketing director, Uriarte will also help oversee the cafe's cultural program, which is set to feature DJs, live performances, readings and exhibitions.

The new venue and its cultural program are launching in true Freda's fashion, with a late-night party on NYE. Tickets are on sale for $75, with the night set to star food from Xinyi, wine by Creenaune Ellis and tunes by the likes of DJ Crabby and DJ Salami.

Once a bustling after-dark hub, Oxford Street was hit hard by the lockout laws and is currently a shell of its former self. But, it seems, that's all starting to change. Cafe Freda's will be joined in Taylor Square by a mega-venue that's set to takeover both the Kinsela and Courthouse Hotels, the City of Sydney has announced plans to reignite nightlife on the street and the NSW Government has scrapped several archaic laws surrounding liquor licences and live music. Oxford Street might just be getting its mojo back.

Find Cafe Freda's at 191–195 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst from January 1. It's open 4pm–12am Wednesday–Thursday and 11–12am Friday–Sunday.

Published on December 16, 2020 by Samantha Teague

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