Food News

Monopole is morphing into a French restaurant

The CBD wine bar has ushered in a new era.
Monopole's duck l'orange
Monopole's duck l'orange

Hospitality outfit the Bentley Group’s beloved wine bar Monopole will transform into a French restaurant on Tuesday 2 July following 12 years of service. Originally located in Potts Point, Monopole moved to the CBD in 2020, and picked up GT’s Wine Bar of the Year Award in 2022. “After 12 successful years, I feel this is a natural progression for Monopole,” said co-owner and executive Brent Savage in a statement.

Brent Savage (left) and Nick Hildebrandt (right)

And while Monopole’s food has always been of a French ilk, the switch from bar à vin to plat du jour promises French classics through a Bentley Group lens. As he puts it, Savage “had a lot of fun designing this menu with our group head chef Aiden Stevens”. This proliferated as traditional French techniques used to showcase Australian producers – think vol-au-vent with sommerlad chicken, Balmain bug and sweetcorn.

Mille-feuille gets a savoury switch up with delicate layers of golden pastry, smoked eel, apple and pickled shallot; as does tarte tatin with caramelised eschallots joined by Roquefort cheese and watercress. Meanwhile a local riff on boudin blanc de homard uses marron to make the white meat sausage, served with a marron tail, morels and tarragon butter. More substantial plates include a duck burger with pickles, Comté and hot sauce (plus the option to luxe it up with duck liver parfait); and fillet steak au poivre.

Marron at Monopole
Boudin blanc de homard (marron sausage and tail with morels and tarragon butter) at Monopole.

A well-priced fixed menu will also be a draw card with two courses for $55 and three courses for $70, offered every day before 6pm. And while there will be some bistro classics, co-owner and sommelier Hildebrandt has emphasised Monopole won’t be classified as a bistro or brasserie, but rather a restaurant with a strong French wine program, plus a focus on apéritifs and digestifs.

A revamped dining room will offer yet another reason to visit the Bentley’s Group’s redone Monopole. Expect velvet curtains, vintage wine fair posters, antique lighting and ivory plateware.

Appropriately the new gallic Monopole will host a lunch for Bastille Day, Sunday 14 July, with a specially designed menu. Festivities will continue on Friday 19 July with a dinner with Champagne producer Pierre Gimonnet.

Monopole reopens on July 2 at 16/20 Curtain Place, Sydney.

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