It has been a trying year for all restaurateurs, and although prolific restaurateur Andrew McConnell pivoted well, being unable to launch his stunning new restaurant and bar Gimlet in the way he had hoped to stung. 

McConnell briefly opened the glamorous high-ceilinged space at Cavendish House between lockdowns, but was banking on capacity rapidly increasing, not a second shutdown. With its soaring ceilings, and columns and old world glamour, McConnell felt the small numbers didn’t do justice to the restaurant. With restrictions continuing to ease, the restaurant will reopen for dine-in trade from November 24.

Rock oysters with seaweed butterand rye at Andrew McConnell's latest venue Gimlet.
Rock oysters with seaweed butterand rye at Andrew McConnell’s latest venue Gimlet.
 Photo: Sharyn Cairns

Open for lunch, dinner and supper, bookings are now open for all sessions. Groups of up to eight will also be able to book the private dining room for set-menu parties, if a small scale, high end Christmas party is on the cards. 

Prior to opening in June, McConnell told Good Food, “The food is European and I don’t want to be pigeon-holed, but I like the simplicity and confidence of Italian cooking, I love the techniques of France and the flavours of Spain in summertime. I didn’t want the menu to have a theme; it’s about quality in the drinks and the produce and cherry-picking what we think is the best of Europe.” McConnell and and head chef Allan Eccles are currently working on the summer menu, which will be available a la carte except for groups over seven. 

Bookings for Gimlet at Cavendish House, 33 Russell St, Melbourne, via