Oyster bar and brasserie now open in Honeysuckle
Nestled along the picturesque Honeysuckle waterfront in Newcastle is the newly unveiled Thermidor Oyster Bar & Brasserie.
Brought to you by Josh and Jess Gregory, the duo has been making their mark on our local hospitality scene for the past 15 years and officially moved into the space of restaurateurs with Thermidor launching on Friday, 8th of September 2023.
“We’d been looking at spaces for about six months. I asked the real estate (agent) to put us in touch with the landlord here so we could share with him our vision for the space. Once he heard it, he basically jumped at it,” Josh said.
Located right on Newcastle Harbour, the pair have completely transformed what some may remember as the former Hog’s Breath site into a dream space for coastal dining.
“There was a little bit of work that needed to be done but the bones were good, and the structure was good. We knew we wanted to make the most of that view as much as we could, so we have sat in every spot in this space to make sure you can still see the water,” Jess said.
The open dining room perfectly exudes what you’d want from a coastal restaurant. From the light and airy open space, fresh waterside air making its way through the front doors, to a menu that showcases our Australian coastal cuisine.
“We originally didn’t want this space because we saw this location as more of a lunch spot. Having come from such a fine dining background, then we just realised that we’re confident that we can do tasty food with good service, so why are we restricting ourselves to just a fine dining restaurant?
“We thought, well why don’t we do something that’s super coastal and super light. Still with our great produce ethos but take that fine dining aspect out of it.”
Thermidor is the by-product of the couple’s past experience, having funnelled all of the best bits of their careers into a unique dining experience that Newcastle will hopefully welcome with open arms.
“I think post-COVID has changed the dining scene so drastically. Restaurateurs are genuinely grateful that diners are willing to spend their evenings in our restaurants. So, let us show you what we love in every aspect.
“We saw this space and we knew we wanted to do coastal and have a menu that was inspired by the coast. The experience is almost like you were coming around to our house for dinner, this is what we would do. There would be a heap of share-style dishes down the table. You would drink loads, eat too much, and roll out of here feeling loved. That’s what we’re going for,” Josh said.
The share-style menu is inspired by Australian coastal cuisine featuring Josh’s personal passion – cooking over fire. Taking the fuss out of the cooking and presenting dishes, the kitchens’ ethos is surrounded by letting the produce speak for itself.
The bar has been designed to include two purpose-built fish tanks and will feature an oyster bar with diners able to enjoy live shucking plus seafood on display. The raw bar will also include three different types of sashimi all the time.
“I’ve cultivated these relationships with people over the last ten years and I just want to give people access to high-quality produce. Our menu is going to be much more dictated by what’s available on the day. So, our conversations with suppliers will be them telling us what’s great, instead of us telling them what we want.”
With that, the menu will change fairly frequently, with both Josh and Jess laughing about having to re-print a new menu on the daily. But, with their good food done well at the forefront of the pair’s philosophy – it’s all in the name of good dining.
“We want this to be great for the city of Newcastle from the get-go. You don’t get a second chance to do an opening so we’re making sure we do it well from the minute we open the doors.”
Whether you’re savouring the briny delights of the oyster bar or indulging in the rich flavours of the brasserie’s dishes, Thermidor Oyster Bar & Brasserie promises a voyage of gastronomic delight overlooking the stunning harbourside of Honeysuckle.