Monday, September 14, 2015

A Second Home

I've been to a lot of openings in my time as a PR person but I went to the opening of Second Home Eltham yesterday and it was amazing.  I was very sad when my ex-client The Light Factory Gallery at 21 Brougham Street in Eltham closed down last October but to see it re-born as a modern restaurant/cafe in Second Home Eltham was fantastic - it was like Fitzroy comes to Eltham yesterday - the place was full of beautiful people, delicious food and drink and pumping music.
Communal table - Second Home Eltham
Corner tables - Second Home Eltham
I got to meet the joint owners of the business, restauranteur/entrepreneur extraordinaire Jason M. Jones (of Friends of Mine, Porgy + Mr Jones and Snow Pony to name but a few) who is a character in himself (I always find entrepreneurs extremely charismatic people) and local girl Catherine Westwood, who has been managing one of Jason's other restaurants for a long while before branching out into her own business with him.
Front bar/open kitchen - Second Home Eltham
Jason M. Jones & Catherine Westwood
The whole place looks phenomenally cool with what was the gallery at the front now a daytime restaurant/cafe complete with communal table, lounge in front of the fire place and other tables around the internal space.  The open kitchen/bar is a new addition as well as the installations holding drinks and the centre olive tree.  The courtyard is not quite yet ready but soon will be along with a planned artisan bakery to supply Jason's other restaurants and lucky locals, as well as what was the former teahouse/cafe to be turned into a private dining area.  Bookings will be taken during the week but not on weekends.
Me and Margot Tasca (Ex-Director of The Light Factory Gallery) 
Fireplace/lounge - Second Home Eltham
The gallery was always a beautiful space with its high clerestory windows but the new interior design (by Jason's partner Brem Perera) and Catherine's influence and style take things to a whole new level - I love the gum leaf motif and whole natural aesthetic of the place - the staff were wearing gum leaf head garlands at the opening yesterday which were a beautiful touch.  I was speaking with the Nillumbik Mayor Helen Coleman who was at the opening yesterday and she was just as excited as I was to see the gallery transformed.  There's a whole new resurgence of cool in Eltham not just with Second Home Eltham opening but also craft brewer Prosciutto Bros. Craft Bar nearby who are relatively new to the area as well.

Speaking of which, if you are into craft beer, there is also Kooinda Brewery at 28 Culverlands Street in Heidelberg West - it's also popular with locals and La Trobe University students.  The suburbs around here are-a changin'...

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