It’s also the name for Newstead’s newest resident. Allonda is the soon-to-open sibling of Paddington’s NOTA Restaurant & Wine Bar – a venue that looks to strike the perfect balance between local eatery and upscale occasion-worthy destination. Expect fresh pasta dishes, share plates piled high with meats and a burrata bar slinging serve after serve of glossy goodness. Here’s what we know …
It’s been a busy 2022 for Sebastiaan de Kort, Kevin Docherty and Yanika Sittisuntorn. In May, the team cut the ribbon on a new wine bar and function space addition for their widely adored Paddington restaurant NOTA – a move that saw the crew tack a whole new room onto their existing premises.
Their next manoeuvre will see the team opening a whole new restaurant. In early October, Seb, Kevin and Yanika will lift the cloche on Allonda, which is currently taking shape on Longland Street in Newstead.
Allonda’s arrival (and NOTA’s recent growth spurt) bookends a trying period for the NOTA crew who, much like many hospitality operators in Brisbane, have been forced to combat with two years of pandemic-induced headaches.
In what is a huge testament to the standard of service and food NOTA has provided during this stretch, the opportunity to open Allonda presented itself not long after the team from Dibcorp (the boutique property developer behind Dwell, the apartment building at the base of which Allonda resides) dined at the Given Terrace restaurant last year.
Soon after, Dibcorp proffered the choice high-ceilinged tenancy and, relishing the opportunity to bring their style of hospitality to Newstead’s prosperous pocket, the NOTA team accepted.
Allonda will be imbued with a similar European-leaning culinary disposition as NOTA, with the team also eager to channel their firstborn’s amiable personality across to its sibling. The crew has linked up with Brisbane-based architects and interior designers Twohill & James, and commercial construction crew LPS Group on the build.
Allonda will boast a two-level layout, encompassing an alfresco area in the laneway, a main dining floor (bracketed on one side by a raw and burrata bar, and an open kitchen on the other), and a private dining room and self-contained bar on the mezzanine level. Being a new build, Seb, Kevin and Yannika are making the most of the chance to fashion Allonda from scratch, as opposed to meshing with the existing structure like they did at NOTA.
“We wanted to go with something that’s very much our own,” says Seb. “It’s not exposed brick, tan, brass and old-world stuff – it’s definitely a lot warmer and lighter in terms of colour palette, but we want people to have the same feeling, where you’re right at home and comfortable.”
Food-wise, Allonda’s kitchen – helmed by Sam Todd (whose resume boasts postings at Stanley and Qualia on Hamilton Island) – will work with Seb, Kevin and NOTA’s head chef Matteo Pisanu to craft an offering of small plates dispensed from the raw bar, plus and assortment of pastas and large-format plates.
“The raw bar will take care of all the cold food and then we’ve got a traditional cooking line where we’ll be cooking the best of what we can get our hands on that matches our style and price point,” says Seb. “There will be beautiful shared meats and we’re really looking forward to using Margra lamb, larger cuts of beef, larger cuts of seafood and we’ll be cooking fresh pasta too.”
As for wines, Yanika will once again be overseeing a stellar list that is expected to feature old- and new-world wines – keeping things approachable to ensure that there’s something exciting for every taste.