01/05/2007 - 22:00

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01/05/2007 - 22:00

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After selling his Highgate night spot, Luxe Bar, a couple of months ago, Geoff Hayward says he’d be focussing his attention on his pub down the road, The Brisbane Hotel.

Bites

After selling his Highgate night spot, Luxe Bar, a couple of months ago, Geoff Hayward says he’d be focussing his attention on his pub down the road, The Brisbane Hotel.

But it may very well be more of a sales focus, with tongues wagging among hospitality circles that the popular hotel is on the market. In a press release outlining the sale of Luxe to managers Michelle Mok and Andy Freeman on March 27, Mr Hayward said he had some new projects in the pipeline but would first take head to Europe “for the summer to recharge and gather more inspiration”.

His media manager could not be contacted regarding the speculated sale. Market watchers tell Gusto Mr Hayward is asking a hefty price for the venue he gutted and renovated in 2004. What can be assumed is there are likely to be some grand plans when Mr Hayward, who founded Cino to Go, Monza and established Bar One with Steve Scaffidi, returns to tackle his new projects.

“I’ll be ready to make my next move in the second half of 2007,” Mr Hayward said in a statement in March. The official handover of Luxe takes place this month.

• • •

Duncan Head has managed to convince an old mate – former bass guitarist with the John Butler Trio, Gavin Shoesmith – to put on a show at his Swan Valley winery and restaurant, Chesters of Heaford Glen.

Mr Shoesmith is part of a group called France is Burning, which is led by Francis Diatschenko, and the group will play for Chesters Restaurant’s 1930s/1940s degustation dinner on Friday May 4. Aside from the hip entertainment, the kitchen will also be preparing a six-course feast, which includes what Gusto is told is something of a showstopper. The dish prepared by chef Paul Smith and called a ‘Shellific Seller’ is a crayfish, yabbie and marron cheesecake with fresh bush tomato, clove and allspice chutney.

“We have that on our normal menu and it just sells because people say they would never think of doing that and they are keen to try it,” Mr Head says. 

The dinner will be matched with Heafod Glen Wines, with a special pre-dinner wine tasting of the pre-release 2007 vintage scheduled for 6.30pm. Tickets cost $90.

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