Dedes Waterfront Group has confirmed it will launch Italian seafood restaurant Sala on Jones Bay Wharf in Sydney’s Pyrmont this month.

The site has remained vacant since The Star Sydney closed Chuuka in October 2021 – a Japanese-Chinese restaurant helmed by Chase Kojima and Victor Liong.

Dedes has teamed up with Danny Russo from The Russolini Group, who has taken on the the executive chef position.

Sala will total 160 seats across a crudo bar overlooking the kitchen, an outdoor terrace and a central dining room.

“My friendship with Danny spans years, and our combined hospitality experience brings a unique edge to the venture as we work to bring the historic site to life again,” says Dedes co-founder Con Dedes.

“The evolution of the site on Jones Bay Wharf has been very exciting for me to be part of.”

Russo has worked with Head Chef Michael Lewis to create the menu, which revolves around Italian traditions and techniques, with classic dishes revisited with a 2022 lense.

“We wanted to call on nostalgic Italian flavours and give them a modern flair to offer a sophisticated yet playful experience to diners,” says Russo.

Dishes include squid ink tortellini with crab, roasted tomato and lemon and caper sauce along with crispy risoni fingers teamed with caviar and parmesan.

A signature dessert, the Piemontese hazelnut, heroes chocolate crafted by Jessica Pedemont in Haberfield.

Head Sommelier Rocco Pezzullo has designed the wine offering around easy-drinking options from Italian and Australian makers that complement the menu.

Bar Manager Behzad Vaziri (ex-The Star Sydney) has honed in on the Negroni for his cocktail list, with a number of versions of the classic cocktail available along with amaro-centric drinks.

House cocktails include the Oyster Shell martini with gin and pine nut, bail and olive oils as well as the Mediterranean Slide with Mastica, limoncello, egg white and basil.

Sala opens on 25 November, with bookings now open.