Lana opens at new Hinchcliff House development at Circular Quay

Lana is the latest addition to the sprawling Hinchcliff House wool store development.
Lana is the latest addition to the sprawling Hinchcliff House wool store development. Photo: Jiwon Kim

The opening of Lana restaurant on Wednesday, June 9, is a promising sign the Sydney food scene is finding its edge again.

Lana is not just 100 seats of luxe, its kitchen will also nudge the boundaries of Italian cuisine after a period of culinary caution in the harbour city.

Italian food with Asian tweaks around the edges, say what? Lana has made a last-minute poaching, nabbing chef Alex Wong, who'll throw sambal shade on bug tortellini with his opening menu.

Abalone and mushroom with scallop and oyster dishes.
Abalone and mushroom with scallop and oyster dishes. Photo: Jiwon Kim

Wong might just have the pedigree to pull off the high-wire culinary act. The Australian-raised chef of Chinese-Vietnamese lineage always had a strong passion for Italian food.

He's just come off a two-year stint as head chef at Russo & Russo in Enmore; before that he was making pasta at Eugenio Maiale's Flour Eggs Water.

Take his roasted crayfish. The chef wanted a subtle nod to south-east Asian pepper crab, so he's used native pepperberries to make the dish sing from a subtle Singaporean song sheet.

Lana's kitchen will nudge the boundaries of Italian cuisine.
Lana's kitchen will nudge the boundaries of Italian cuisine. Photo: Jiwon Kim

The Asian influence is more of a nod than a takeover. Instead of a traditional salsa verde, Wong will construct a spring onion verde and pair it with Murray cod.

Lana is the latest addition to the sprawling Hinchcliff House wool store development.

Its entry-level Grana eatery and attached bakery have already opened, along with Apollonia, the basement bar they had to cut into the Circular Quay bedrock to accommodate.

Wong is planning a few other surprises. "I've been working on an arancini with marron, I'd like to get it on the menu," the chef says.

Open Wed-Sat noon-3pm and 5pm-late.

5-7 Young Street, Sydney, 02 7228 1400