Melbourne chef Charlie Carrington will open Atlas Dining on Commercial Rd, South Yarra on Tuesday, 6 September. Inspired by his eight-month trip spanning 15 countries across South America, North America, Europe and Asia, the 22-year-old’s first restaurant will explore different cuisines of the world as the seasons change.
Atlas Dining’s food and beverage menus will change three times per year. The first cuisine to feature, Vietnamese, will be on offer until the end of December.
Since leaving high school at the age of 16, Carrington has worked alongside a range of chefs at restaurants including Firedoor and Marque in Sydney, Vue De Monde in Melbourne and various restaurants in London, Antwerp, San Francisco, Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Bangkok, Singapore and La Paz.
Carrington’s aim is for Atlas Dining to be a constantly evolving casual restaurant with no rules.
“The idea initially came about out of fascination for this planet and its many cultures,” said Carrington. “Australia is such a multicultural place and I think our food should reflect that. I was once asked to cook a family meal at a restaurant I interned at. The only condition was it must be Australian – they laughed when I served a spread of Northern Thai food inspired by my recent trip to Thailand. Unknown to me at the time, this was one of the fundamental causes for me to begin this journey.”
Carrington’s first menu is largely inspired by Northern Vietnam – from Hanoi to Sapa – with dishes including Wagyu beef pho, squid with fermented daikon and house-made tofu and onion. As Melbourne shifts into summer and different produce comes into season, Carrington’s menu will evolve to reflect the cuisine of Southern Vietnam.
The 50 seat venue offers four and six course menus with a selection of smaller plates available at the bar. Carrington is focusing on local ingredients and wood cooking techniques learnt under the guidance of Lennox Hastie at Firedoor.
The beverage list features cocktails to match the cuisine, a selection of wines from Australia and Europe, and local Victorian ciders and craft beers. Shannon Weeks, from River Caf in the UK, will run the front of house team.
Carrington will fly to Israel with business partners Ben Carrington and Michael Fort-Williams in late December to prepare for the next stage of Atlas Dining, with the plan to reopen early January, serving food inspired by their experiences in Israel.
Carrington has worked with Sydney-based architects Belinda Pajkovic and Tamara Frangelli to create the space. The dining space features an open kitchen pass providing a view through to the wood fire oven, hearth and kitchen. The restaurant also features a courtyard with banquette seating around a custom designed fire pit for casual dining and drinks.
Atlas Dining is located at 133 Commercial Road, South Yarra VIC 3141 and is open Tuesday to Saturday 6pm to late.