Alfonso Ales. Photo: Jennifer Soo
He almost needs his own newsletter these days. This week's Jamie Webb (Cabiria, Peasant, Lefty's) news is that the restaurateur has pulled out of his planned Gasworks venture, saying only that "the deal had fallen through". However he's still on schedule to open in the McLachlan and Ann complex in Fortitude Valley early next year.
In other news, Webb has appointed a new head chef/consultant chef for Peasant, with the intention of setting off down a more traditional Spanish route.
Alfonso Ales hails from Seville and brings with him an impressive CV, including a stint at El Bulli as well as working at Michelin-starred restaurants in France, such as Michele Guerard's Eugenie-les-Bains. In Australia, his previous position was as executive chef of Jonah's Whale Beach, the luxury retreat and restaurant in Sydney, and before that he headed up the equally famous Bilsons.
Webb says their aim is to "crank up" Peasant; his Spanish tapas joint at The Barracks in Petrie Terrace.
"Alfonso has created an amazing tapas menu of some really authentic and traditional dishes – I thought I knew a lot about Spanish food but there are things he's put on the menu that I've never heard of."
Simple but good, Webb says is the brief. With so many tapas places in Brisbane, from great (such as the upstairs bar at the soon to be departed Ortiga) to the downright tasteless, it would seem to make sense to do something to stand out from the tapas crowd. The new menu under Ales is scheduled to be launched at Peasant at the end of next week.