New look and new ownership for Ainslie restaurant Pulp Kitchen

Jil Hogan
Current Pulp Kitchen owners Nathan Brown and Dan Giordani at the Ainslie restaurant.
Current Pulp Kitchen owners Nathan Brown and Dan Giordani at the Ainslie restaurant. Photo: Jil Hogan

Ainslie restaurant Pulp Kitchen will get a new look, feel and menu after current owners Dan Giordani and Nathan Brown sold the European bistro to Gus Armstrong, owner of Braddon's eightysix.

The popular neighbourhood eatery will continue trade as is until February 14. It will then close for refurbishments and Armstrong expects to reopen in May, under the same name.

Armstrong is keeping his redevelopment plans fairly close to his chest for now, but says the new Pulp Kitchen will shake things up, but remain a "neighbourhood restaurant".

Eightysix owner Gus Armstrong expects to reopen Pulp Kitchen in May.
Eightysix owner Gus Armstrong expects to reopen Pulp Kitchen in May. Photo: Jeffrey Chan

"I'm gonna take into consideration what's there already," he said.

"I want it to become something that helps the Ainslie Shops as a total village, but be a stronger asset to the dining scene, and to Canberra's coolness."

Armstrong is currently working on the menu development - he said to expect a short menu with simple cookery.

It will be the third ownership change for Pulp Kitchen, which was originally opened by Christian Hauberg a decade ago.

After five years owning and running the restaurant themselves, Giordani and Brown said it felt like the time was right to move on.

"I don't think we made decision to sell as such, it's more I think everything sort of lined up a certain way", said Giordani.

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"It was more about us probably leaving when we feel like everything was going right, rather than trying to get out the door when everything's going wrong. I want a nice finish," said Brown.

The duo will finish up with a special four course degustation dinner on Valentine's Day.

While Brown said some regular customers have been left "distraught" about their decision to sell, he's confident that the venue is in good hands.

"Everything that I've talked to Gus about, I think it's gonna be really cool. It's gonna be obviously modern and have a bit of a different spin to what it is now, but I'm pretty comfortable thinking about what will happen going forward. I think it'll be good for Ainslie as well," he said.

Both Brown and Giordani plan to take a bit of time off - Girodani wants to spend more time with his daughter and go fishing, and Brown hopes to spend a vintage at a vineyard to learn more about the wine industry.

Neither has any fixed plans for the future, but said they'd be open to opportunities that might come along.