Stella opens the doors to its multi-storey hospitality establishment with an Italian flourish in South Yarra.
Sitting on the prominent corner of Chapel and Grosvenor Streets, across four sophisticated levels exuding understated elegance, the Italian food philosophy is served with both charm and tradition alongside a 200-strong, Italian-leaning wine list, Mediterranean-inspired cocktails and stellar rooftop vistas.
From basement to rooftop, each level has been considered and designed to deliver a different hospitality experience. A private dining room in the basement wine cellar can host up to 10 guests, while the ground floor dining area and kitchen feature a sculptura Marana Forni pizza oven. The first floor sets the scene for social drinks and bites with velvet seating and a fireplace, while the rooftop reveals a vertical garden and sunlit space for cocktails.
In Stella, owner Ali Mousavi honours his father’s legacy of having owned Italian restaurants for more than 40 years. Selecting ambient colours and materials to create an inviting hospitality space in the heritage-listed building (circa 1870s), Stella’s elegant design is an interesting addition to Chapel Street. Sourcing an experienced team to help him deliver, Ali has engaged executive chef John Park (Vue de monde, 400 Gradi, Ines Wine Bar) and venue manager Paul Mitchell (Grossi Florentino, Wills Domain Winery Margaret River, 400 Gradi).
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“Stella, named after my daughter, will be a destination that combines Italian hospitality and culture with a modern Australian take – a mixture of charm and elegance with a warm, inviting and vibrant atmosphere,” says Ali Mousavi, owner of Stella. “We will be the neighbourhood local – familiar, welcoming and known for dishing up delicious Italian fare, with something for everyone.”
A quick bite or an elegant meal, Stella’s menu will offer house-made artisanal pasta and seasonal sauces, pizzas topped with classic and adventurous combinations using Stella’s signature dough recipe passed down from generations, and a line-up of regionally-inspired, hearty Italian favourites, comforting desserts and smaller sharing plates.
An extensive list of local and Italian vino and an impressive basement cellar of quaff-worthy reserves will be on offer, as well as a signature drinks list featuring in-house takes on cocktail classics that will satisfy the thirst of those looking for after-work, rooftop fun, pre-dinner sips or a cosy nightcap.
“Stella is a contemporary interpretation of a vibrant and traditional Italian trattoria with the circular pizza bar on the ground as the heart of the restaurant. Like any true kitchen, it’s where you naturally gravitate, and this is the energy that will flow into the rest of the venue,” says Ali Mousavi.
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