Lotus, Potts Point’s award-winning bistro and cocktail bar, will return as an “extended pop-up concept” this spring.
Lotus represented a vibrant time in Kings Cross’ history, running from 2002 until 2012. It was also a breeding ground for hospitality talent, with Dan Hong in the kitchen (pictured above), Alexx Stuart behind the bar, and Frank Roberts – now Merivale’s Chief Food & Beverage Officer – on the floor.
The venue will open in the space that is currently home to The Fish Shop, which will closes its doors after seven years this Sunday (16 June).
“Lotus was the beginning of my journey with Merivale and my first position as a head chef”, says Hong.
“I was only 24 years old and hadn’t yet developed a distinctive style, but Justin trusted me to cook what I loved and thought was delicious. They were some of the best years of my career and it means so much to go back and cook where it all began”.
Merivale decided to bring back the institution for an extended pop-up and farewell to Challis Avenue, following the sale of the property last month. The Hemmes family acquired the three-story building in 1988 when they began their first serious foray into hospitality – originally with a coffee shop, before Lotus in 2002.
“It is a beautiful building and holds a special place in my family’s heart,” says Justin Hemmes, Merivale CEO.
“The opportunity arose to sell the building vacant possession, allowing the new owner to work their magic and take it on its next journey.
“In the meantime, we’re thrilled to bring back Lotus for one last hurrah. It was an institution for ten years and created amazing memories for so many of our guests and staff”.