Worldwide Hospitality Group (WHG) will open their popular Hawker-style eat house Junk on Thursday, 23 March, in Melbourne’s Punch Lane precinct.
Helmed Tony Kelly (original executive chef of Queensland’s two-hatted Stokehouse Q) and business partner Scott Hoskins, Junk offers healthy modern-Asian street food.
“Junk respectfully tips its hat to its Eastern origins while having fun in its Western home,” WHG co-owner Kelly said.
“We’ve secured one of the rising stars of Australian food in executive chef Mitch Smith, who has delivered a robust and colourful menu comprising authentic Thai, Japanese, Cantonese and Korean influences with a playful modern-Australian twist.
“Mitch’s knowledge and talent in freestyle Asian cooking is unrivalled and evident in every dish, resulting in unique flavour combinations and welcome surprises across the menu.”
Smith’s menu is not that of a traditional Asian restaurant, with dishes including crispy soft shell crab steamed bao with chipotle and burnt lime kewpie, crispy pork belly in a kaffir lime and caramel laksa, and crispy fried gunpowder chicken ribs with tamarind chutney.
“Tony and Mitch take no shortcuts,” WHG co-owner Hoskins said. “Every single dish on the menu is prepared by world class cooks using only the best local ingredients available. Our sauces and curry pastes are all made from scratch in-house, and our broths are cooked for two days.
“The menu is refreshingly different and every dish is a standout.”
In partnering with long-term friend Hoskins to form WHG in 2013, Kelly hung up his fine dining hat to indulge in “people’s food”.
“When we launched Junk on the Sunshine Coast late 2014, it was an opportunity for Scott and I to have a bit of fun,” Kelly said.
“Our original plan was for the restaurant’s offering to revolve seasonally with different cuisines and styles, however guests responded so enthusiastically to Junk that we realised early on that we were onto a winner.”
Kelly said the expansion of Junk was one of numerous projects for WHG, with our Junk restaurants now operate and plans to expand the brand across Australia.
“Worldwide Hospitality Group is experiencing an exciting period of growth.
“With the success of Junk in Brisbane, we’re excited to expand to Melbourne and to be a part of the thriving restaurant scene.”
Junk opens 23 March for lunch and dinner seven days from 11am–10pm and is located at 22 Punch Lane Melbourne.