Fashion company descendent and acclaimed pub innovator Justin Hemmes spoke exclusively with PubTIC, and lauded the virtues of the fine-dining revolution for the industry.
It’s no secret the ‘Masterchef factor’ has had an influence on hospitality establishments in recent years, particularly those offering attractive meals and beverages.
Making their bread and butter largely from budding connoisseurs, Merivale’s heart beats in the Sydney CBD – and increasingly its trendy fringe suburbs.
PubTIC: Do you think the foodie trend could be becoming ‘mainstream’?
“That’s happening now, and will continue to happen,” states Hemmes.
“The customer is very excited about all the new concepts and craft offerings of food and beverage, and the more diversity we have – the more exciting the industry is – the more people will go out and enjoy it.
“The greater diversity of offerings that are out there, the more people will go out, not go home and just make an outing on a Thursday or Friday or Saturday night.
“There are so many wonderful offerings now at affordable pricing, people are going out Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday…
“So that market’s increasing, because people are going out and entertaining more often.
“We certainly had a culture [in Australia] where you would eat at home Sunday to Wednesday or Thursday night, and only go out Friday and Saturday night or if it’s a special occasion.
“Food in venues and restaurants is very affordable now; it’s often cheaper to go out and eat at a venue – which does all the dishes, and cleans up, and does all that – than it is to eat at home. I think the industry is in a better position than it’s ever been, and certainly the most exciting.”
More from the interview with Justin Hemmes will appear in the January edition of PubTIC e-Magazine.