Stokehouse City

Author: Maya Kerthyasa

St Kilda landmark restaurant Stokehouse is moving to the Melbourne CBD. Or at least temporarily. The building the restaurant occupied for more than 20 years burned down in January and a pop-up has been operating in a temporary structure near the site since February, but owners Frank and Sharon Van Haandel announced today that they'd be closing it on 11 April. They're moving the business to 7 Alfred Place, to take over from Hotel Comme, which they also own, from mid-May until the St Kilda site reopens in 2015. Comme's last service will be Sunday 20 April.

"The impact that the fire has had on the group has forced us to make some extremely tough decisions and it is incredibly sad to say goodbye to the amazing team at Comme, and we wish to thank them for their contribution and hard work," said Frank Van Haandel. "Under these exceptional circumstances, I believe that this is the best way forward and we are excited to bring Stokehouse to the city."

The new pop-up, Stokehouse City, will mimic St Kilda's upstairs-downstairs arrangement, with casual dining on the ground floor and a more refined offering above. Pascale Gomes-McNabb, the architect of Stokehouse's lauded renovation in 2010, has signed on to design the interiors; Anthony Musarra and Oliver Gould remain general manager and chef respectively.

The Van Haandel Group was recently in the news elsewhere after announcing that it would not proceed with plans to open a Stokehouse at the Sydney Opera House.

Stokehouse City, 7 Alfred Pl, Melbourne, Vic, (03) 9525 5555,

Looking for more Melbourne dining options? Check out our list of the best restaurants in Melbourne.

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