Bibs at the ready. Three of the country's boldest chefs will team up at Harpoon Harry on 7 August: Africola's Duncan Welgemoed, Monty Koludrovic (Icebergs Dining Room & Bar, The Dolphin) and Harpoon Harry's own Morgan McGlone (Belles Hot Chicken). The trio will bring their A-games for Africola Rock'n Rola - the third instalment in the ongoing Friends of Harry's series.
While McGlone will be on snacks duty and Koludrovic on dessert, Welgemoed will be driving the main part of the menu. Diners can expect Africola's signature peri peri chicken with his (boom) chakalaka spicy relish, as well as "cockles and hearts, tongues and monkey glands," he says. "I want messy tables and empty bottles, and people using at least 10 napkins throughout the meal."
Africola is currently transitioning from its South African shebeen-style to a more Maghreb eating-house feel. Welgemoed says the new menu, which launches on 19 July, is vegetable-heavy and hot breads, pickles, smoked meats and spice will reign supreme. Africola Rock'n Rola will be Sydney's first taste.
Koludrovic is excited about the Adelaide restaurant's transition and is keen to channel some of that new zest into his dessert: bergamot and coffee marinated tamarillo with baked custard and rose, clove and pepper-milk gelato. "Duncan's cooking is refined yet gutsy, so I want the dessert to be clean and fragranced with the amazing savoury umami of tamarillo."
The Africola team are no strangers to Harpoon Harry dining room; Welgemoed's business partner, designer James Brown of graphic design studio Mash, is responsible for the venue's bold look. "I've cooked with these weapons before and not only are they brilliant chefs but they have the biggest hearts in the business," says Welgemoed. Koludrovic, on the other hand, is just looking forward to being "front row on the peri peri chicken show," he says.
There will be two Rock'n Rola sittings - a lunch service and a dinner - and the tickets for each will be capped at 50 guests to keep things simple, says Welgemoed. "To quote the legend Rodney Scott - I'm there to complement not complicate."
Africola Rock'n'Rola**at Harpoon Harry, Sunday 7 August, 1pm and 6pm; tickets are $150 for five courses with matching wines. To book firstname.lastname@example.org or call 02 8262 8800.
Harpoon Harry, 40/44 Wentworth Ave, Surry Hills, NSW,hotelharry.com.au/bar