Applejack, the hospitality group behind a posse of venues including Bopp & Tone and Hester's in the city and The Butler at Potts Point, is joining the growing push into North Sydney, where they'll open a yet-to-be-named restaurant and bar at 99 Mount Street in spring. Luchetti Krelle will design the interiors.
Who'll oversee its kitchen direction? Applejack has just signed chef Patrick Friesen as its head of culinary, and the 150-seat Mount Street venue will be his first major project.
The onetime Merivale chef has plenty of credits on the north side, with stints as head chef as Queen Chow Manly and Papi Chulo on his CV.
Applejack is also an experienced player in the north, with The Botanist at Kirribilli and Neutral Bay's SoCal under its umbrella.
Friesen's recent pop-up stint at Applejack's Forrester's in Surry Hills, where he squeezed a roast dinner into a giant Yorkshire pudding, clearly made an impression with the group's owners, who have handed him the reins.
The chef says he wants to strengthen relationships with producers and focus on sustainability.
"[Applejacks'] focus on leading and mentoring the next generation of hospitality is always at the forefront," Friesen says.