Gastrology reviews Hophaus Southgate

Gastrology attended the launch of reinvented European bier hall ‘HOPHAUS’ at Southgate last week.

Along with the impending opening of new Southgate Italian wine and tapas restaurant ARTUSI, Red Emperor’s new location and chef Lin Chan (Flower Drum), and Bluetrain’s critically acclaimed new upper level fit out, HOPHAUS affirms Southgate’s position as a landmark Melbourne dining and socialising destination.

Read the full review here

The Modern Con reviews Amarok Bar Restaurant

Check out what The Modern Con had to say about Amarok Bar Restaurant and Ice Bar Melbourne.

With winter around the corner, Melbournians are pulling out the duvets and snuggling by the heater; but why do that when you could head to Southgate – a location becoming more and more trendy by the week – and enjoy the warmth of a fireplace with cocktails and tapas in style?

Amarok is Southgates newest venue to open its doors, right next to HOPHAUS. The venue immediately emminates a cosy environment with a lodge-like feel; a moose head on the wall, warming colours and a gorgeous view of Southbank.

Read the full review here

Hophaus NOW OPEN!

We are excited to announce Hophaus is now open on the mid level at Southgate!

With an impressive selection of German, Austrian, Belgian and Czech Brews on offer, Hophaus is a unique drinking house, somewhere to taste and learn about the famous German beer styles that have influenced the drinking habits of generations across the globe.

The menu features classic Bavarian favourites such as Pork Knuckle, Bratwurst, Wiener Schnitzel and more. All with a contemporary Melbourne flair and an open kitchen showcasing low and slow cooking methods over the coal fired pit and rotisserie.

Open every day 11am till late!

Amarok Bar & Restaurant now open at Southgate!

Explore an exciting new dining experience on the banks of the Yarra River. The restaurant within Chill On Ice Lounge (now known as Melbourne Ice Bar) has been re-imagined as Amarok Bar & Restaurant now offering a perfect fusion of Native North American flavours made from the freshest local Australian ingredients, served up in a unique and relaxed informal setting. Open now on the mid level, Southgate.

Progressive Dinners becomes Southgate Moveable Feasts!

This year Southgate’s Progressive Dinners have been given a makeover and will now be known as Southgate Moveable Feasts!

Its time to celebrate winter dining with friends at a Sunday lazy lunch progressive and the classic Monday night progressive dinner. Choose from a three course dinner or lunch for $60 or $85 at three different restaurants. This year we are excited to bring you 14 Southgate restaurants including newcomers Artusi, Amarok Bar & Restaurant, the new Bluetrain and Hophaus!

Southgate Moveable Feasts are on sale now! Book now to secure your tickets.

HOPHAUS to open at Southgate!

DEXUS Property Group and Red Rock Leisure officially announce the launch of HOPHAUS, in Southgate restaurant and shopping precinct’s iconic space previously occupied by Bluetrain (now on Southgate’s upper level).

A contemporary twist on the great Bavarian Beer Halls, HOPHAUS is the latest addition to Red Rock Leisure’s stable of social pubs and Southgate’s restaurant precinct, drawing inspiration from the history and tradition of the world’s original “craft breweries” that celebrates the Germanic approach to brewing, one of both art and science. With unparalleled views along the Yarra housing up to 350 patrons, HOPHAUS is set to become an exciting new destination for Melbourne social gatherings.

Scott Travers, DEXUS Regional General Manager Office & Industrial says, “We are proud to announce the opening of HOPHAUS at Southgate this year, which will add a unique new beer hall experience to Southgate. Along with the impending opening of new Southgate Italian wine and tapas restaurant ARTUSI, Red Emperor’s new location and chef Lin Chan (Flower Drum), and Bluetrain’s critically acclaimed new upper level fit out, HOPHAUS affirms Southgate’s position as a landmark Melbourne dining and socialising destination.”

HOPHAUS owner, Paul O’Brien says, “We wanted to create a truly one-of-a-kind experience in this iconic location, an experience that delights and surprises yet also feels familiar and hospitable.”

HOPHAUS will house over 30 draught taps around its huge central bar.  With an impressive selection of German, Austrian, Belgian and Czech Brews on offer, HOPHAUS will be a unique drinking house, somewhere to taste and learn about the famous German beer styles that have influenced the drinking habits of generations across the globe.

HOPHAUS’ architectural design has been created by the multi award-winning Maddison Architects founded by Peter Maddison of Grand Designs Australia.

Peter Maddison says, “We have taken great delight in crafting a unique interior for this project, which is based on research of European beer halls, and then re-inventing them, so that the materials and finishes are familiar, yet somehow different.  This can be seen in for example, the polychrome glazed brickwork (over 6,000 in total) that feature throughout the venue.”

Feature beers will change regularly and some of Germany’s and Europe’s oldest and most loved brews will be available on tap, including beers from the famed Weihenstephan (the world’s oldest brewery), Paulaner, Franziskaner and Bitburger breweries.

HOPHAUS will also feature a selection of German, Austrian and Alsace wines by the glass along with New World wines that celebrate the region’s famed varieties: Riesling, Pinot Gris, Gruner Veltliner and more.

The menu at HOPHAUS will feature classic Bavarian favourites with a contemporary Melbourne flair with a big focus on communal shared dining. The open kitchen will showcase low and slow cooking methods over the coal fired pit and rotisserie.

Executive Chef, Marc Brown promises the food will be exciting and fresh, using age-old European cooking styles that bring out the natural flavours of great Victorian produce.

“Uncomplicated, nothing too fussy or overly sauced, just good honest food that will keep you coming back for more,” says Marc Brown.

The kitchen will be open for lunch and dinner, while a bar menu will complement an afternoon or late night brew.

Hophaus is anticipated to open in late May 2014. For more information subscribe to the Southgate eNewsletter.

Flavours of Melbourne

In this second edition of Flavours of Melbourne the book uncovers Melbourne’s nooks and crannies – upstairs, downstairs and through the complex laneway system. Featuring beautiful photography, the history of how our city came to be, recipes, street art, restaurants and bars – all coming together in this exciting new book about the flavours of the most liveable city in the world, Melbourne.

The cover showcases the vibrant street art culture of Melbourne’s laneways as well as doubling as a map; the dustcover itself folds out into a map pinpointing the hotspots of Melbourne.

Not only is this book your guide to Melbourne but it’s your at-home recipe guide to Melbourne’s dining scene. With recipes from all your favourite restaurants, where head chefs use the local produce that surrounds Melbourne.

Winner of World Gourmand Cookbook Awards, New York City IPPY Award.

Pick up your copy at these restaurants and retailers:



DEXUS Property Group announces the opening of new restaurant ARTUSI in prestigious Southgate location.

DEXUS Property Group officially announces the launch of ARTUSI, a new modern Italian wine bar and dining establishment at the Southgate Restaurant and Shopping Precinct.

Opening in April 2014, ARTUSI will cater to 150 patrons for lunch, pre-theatre, dinner and supper seven days a week with an extensive Italian and European wine list and authentic Italian tapas menu created by head chef Leandro Panza.

Scott Travers, DEXUS Regional General Manager Office & Industrial said, “We are proud to announce the opening of ARTUSI at Southgate this year, which will add an exceptional new wine and Italian tapas experience to Southgate. The restaurant is ideally positioned next to Hamer Hall and affirms Southgate’s position as the gateway to Melbourne’s arts precinct.”

ARTUSI is the brainchild of Luis Pampliega and Tamara Volkoff, owners of the much-loved Southgate Italian eatery Tutto Bene that is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary.

The ethos of ARTUSI is ‘The Art of Eating and Drinking Well’, inspired by Pellegrino Artusi and his book La Scienza in Cucina e L’Arte di Mangiar Bene (The Science of Cookery and the Art of Eating Well), published in 1891. Italian born Artusi was a bon vivant and raconteur, well known in the art and food world, and credited by many food historians as establishing a truly national cuisine and laying the foundations for Italy’s dining identity as we know it.

With a Sicilian heritage and knowledge and passion for Italian cooking, ARTUSI’s head chef Leandro Panza has been integral in the development of the new venture and has worked with world renowned Italian restaurateurs and establishments. These include La Strada in Singapore and celebrity chef George Locatelli’s Michelin star restaurant, Zafferano in London, as well as in several of Melbourne’s well established Italian restaurants, including Tutto Bene, where Leandro currently remains as executive chef.

“Our focus is on producing artisan handmade pastas and a mouth-watering selection of delicacies, such as whole roasted duck, suckling pig and fish created from the new wood fired oven which will be the heart and soul of the kitchen, matched with a wide selection of boutique wines. Organic produce, bespoke producers and ‘paddock to plate’ dining is inherent to ARTUSI’s philosophy with the whole experience centred on simplicity, authenticity and quality,” said Leandro.

ARTUSI’s architectural design will be created by Chris Connell (Café Cucina, Il Bacaro, Melbourne Dining Room) and is inspired by Southgate’s history as a landmark city dining destination with features of its bluestone façade with copper and marble accents, opening the light through the bay windows to bask in the view of the city by day or by night.

ARTUSI will be located on Southgate’s upper level joining well-known Southgate favourites The Deck, Miyako and the new look Bluetrain. The venue is the first in a series of new restaurant openings at Southgate in 2014, with a European beer dining concept to follow later in the year.

Download Artusi media release


Red Emperor offers fine Cantonese cuisine with dashes of flavour from Hong Kong and other mainland regions. Considered one of Melbourne’s best Chinese restaurants, Red Emperor’s Chinese New Year Prosperity Dinner and their daily Yum Cha are popular with locals and visitors to the area. We have a chat to Red Emperor’s manager of 21 years, Christine, about what makes Red Emperor Southgate so special.

You relocated from the upper to mid level last year, what changes have happened with the new venue?

We moved a year and two months ago and are busier than before.  Our new restaurant is much smaller and it fills up very quickly given the large amount of regulars we have. We have always been more well-known for our yum-cha so Sunday yum-cha is usually booked out and dinner is picking up as well. We seem to be getting more pre-theatre goers whenever there are good shows going on.

We serve a pre-theatre special in the area looking into the shopping complex. Within five minutes of opening the door it can be filled up and the others will simply spill into the rest of our dining room and when that is full, to our neighbours. There have been many nights like that and the turnover is very quick. Many times, customers come in with only half an hour to dine. It’s very intense and always great to be able to meet their needs so quickly and many of those do come back for more leisurely meals later.

People come before shows at Hamer Hall next door, and a lot have come from the NGV exhibition Monet’s Garden as well.

Do people give you their reviews of the exhibition?

Most of the time, especially post theatre. The other day I heard one about Monet. He said too much flowers. I said of course, you’re a guy!

What are the popular items on your menu?

Peking duck is always the most popular as well as our delicate dim sums and dumplings from the yum-cha selections.

We’ve two new chefs in the kitchen. Lin Chan is the new head chef (pictured). Now, both our first and second chefs are from Flower Drum. It’s really exciting. We’re thinking of doing some new things with our menu once they both settle in more.

Are there some hidden gems on the menu that you’d like to see people try more of?

People should try the steamed Chatham Island blue cod from New Zealand. It’s a really great piece of fish and we need to eat more fish.  I personally believe it to be as good as Coral Trout. Sometimes when there’re only two customers dining, I always offer to cook the cod two ways for them. Half steamed and the other half pan-fried; 1 fish with 2 different flavours and texture.

I would like to see more people add vegetables to their meals. We get fresh vegetables delivered daily such as snow pea shoots, bitter mustard and choy sum. My favourite at the moment is stir-fried snow pea shoots with goji berries which is high in anti-oxidants – healthy and delicious!

If we were to find you having dinner in the restaurant, what would you order from the menu?

My whole family loves the roast belly pork. That’s one of the new items on the menu since we moved.  We roast one to two large pieces every night and we simply can’t keep up. It usually sells out within one or two hours. It’s not something that the chefs can do straight away –they need time to dry the skin so the crackling is crispy and crunchy. A lot of our new dishes revolve around pork – we use good quality Berkshire Kurabuta black pig. Its breed hormone free from the border of Victoria and NSW – soft, pink, top quality pork meat.

We will definitely have Lobster plucked fresh from one of our 4 seafood tanks, cooked with ginger and spring onions with lots of noodles – really delicious! We’ll also be having steamed fish and fresh vegetables as these are always essential parts of a Chinese dinner.

Another dish is pork ribs cooked three times. People always ask why do you cook it three times? We jokingly answer because the chef needed 3 times to get it right! Not really, it’s actually the whole cooking process. It’s first boiled in master stock for about an hour to infuse flavour, then drained, added with more herbs and spices and steamed about for 3 hours until tender. We then fry the whole piece to give a really nice fragrance. It’s then sliced, topped up with sauce and served with Chinese broccoli. They have a Chinese name for it, but the translation makes it difficult. Much easier to give it a simple name so most people could remember it.

And you think people judge a good pork by its crackling?

Oh yeah, they always want great crackling. It’s not really good for you, but then, I guess once in a while won’t hurt!

Tell us about the Dundee selection.

Crocodile and kangaroo!

People find crocodile very interesting. It’s a little bit like a cross between fish and chicken, nice and lean, not fatty.  Asian cultures believe crocodile has medicinal qualities – they use a lot of it in herbal soups, it’s good for the respiratory tract.

And kangaroo is a good source of iron without much cholesterol, a very lean meat. Kangaroo cannot be overcooked as it will be really tough. Most people do a slow cooked braise or barbeque, but we do a very fast stir fry so it’s nice and tender. Customers gamed enough to try it after bad experiences elsewhere are always surprised by our dish. It’s a very healthy selection.

What do you think the team in the kitchen likes the most about being here in Southgate?

The customers at Southgate are very discerning in their taste and know their food. They don’t stick to the typical 70’s or 80’s Chinese dishes – sweet and sour pork, lemon chicken or beef and black bean sauce. Most Chinese restaurants will sell a lot of this. We still have the ingredients for these so they are still available by request; we just don’t put them on the menu.

We love for our customers to venture into other Chinese food and explore different delicate flavours achieved by stir fries and steaming where techniques and timings are critical. I believe that is when our team in the kitchen can put all their years of practice, skills and experience to the test.

Christine Yong has been the manager of Red Emperor for over 21 years. The new venue can be found on Southgate’s mid-level. For bookings call 9699 4170.