Todd Garratt, one of the original owners at Buzo restaurant and The Wine Library, has bobbed up at The Royal Richmond Hotel, on Sydney's western outskirts.
The hotel has had a massive revamp over the past 12 months and recently opened an atrium bistro.
"We want to stay as countrified as possible," says Garratt, who also worked at Fish Butchery and was head chef at contemporary Spanish restaurant Balcon by Tapavino. "We're doing our own dry-ageing … and using all the great local produce around here. We just had a tomahawk steak night."
The bistro serves up elevated pub classics – free-range chicken schnitzel gets a parmesan and herb crumb, and the steak sandwich features rotisserie-cooked rump and gentleman's relish.
Garratt was lured to the 170-year-old pub as its GM by its co-owner, Karen Anderson, with whom he'd worked at Pier early in their careers.
Anderson and Peter Wynne, who used to have Martin Place Bar in the city, have added shine to the interior with American oak parquetry, tartan carpet and brass fittings.
Bistro open daily 11am-9.30pm.
163 Windsor Street, Richmond, theroyalrichmondhotel.com.au