Chapel St is diverse. At one extreme is the high end shopping and dining, at the other sits everything hipster.
In between, bridging the gap, is The Wise, a freshly opened Tapas bar & restaurant a stones throw up High st.
Upon entering it can be hard to take in all that this quaint venue has to offer, from the scholastic quotes sprawling overhead to the portraits on the walls and even the wing-backed chairs, there’s no shortage of visual processing to be done. But the multiple angles that the owners have taken provides for an interesting, rather than overbearing experience.
In support of the design are the wide-ranging food options. Breakfast is served from 8am daily with tapas available from 3pm Wednesday to Sunday; the menu takes it’s inspiration from all around the world at the hands of experienced Spanish chef’s, Cesar and Stella. As owner Greg Young clarifies, “We want to become known as a venue that you can come to at any time. Whether you’re on your way to work or home from work you can always pop in.”
Both Young and co-owner Jessica Dalziell moved down from Sydney, having been involved in the hospitality industry, looking for a challenge. “We thought we might try something a little bit out of our comfort zone and go with the food aspect. Putting it all together’s been a challenge, we’re all starting something new,” before adding what a benefit getting such quality in the kitchen has been, “My stress can be focused on the business, not the kitchen, the working relationship’s been great.”
It all combines to build an atmosphere that has something for everyone. The Wise is a venue that works to strike a balance so few manage. It acknowledges the greats of the past whilst simultaneously propelling itself uniquely into the future, all the time building on a reputation of flexibility.
Integrating themselves as much as possible in the local community, all ingredients are sourced locally from nearby markets and produce stores.
From afar, it appears that The Wise and Prahran will make the cosiest of fits. It’s an integration that may be in it’s infancy, but appears it has what it takes to stand the test of time.