MELBOURNE | Reine & La Rue is two venues from Nomad Group. Reine is a statement restaurant, housed inside the stunningly restored neo-gothic Melbourne Stock Exchange, which dates back to 1891. La Rue, is an intimate 8 seater bar that you’ll find tucked behind the restaurant, past a small courtyard.
Lying dormant for 20 years, the renovated building is a sight to behold. Tall vaulted ceilings, marble, granite columns, intricate details, and stained glass windows combine for what is one of Melbourne’s most spectacular dining spaces.
Head Chef Brendan Katich has come across from Nomad Melbourne to lead the kitchen, developing the menu in collaboration with executive chef Jacqui Challinor. It’s a menu inspired by French classics, with particular inspiration coming from New York City’s Balthazar. As with all of the Nomad Group restaurants, ingredients are top quality, sourced from the best local and independent famers and producers.
There’s small bites like beef tartare, smoked bone marrow, and Jerusalem artichoke; wood roast leek vinaigrette with hazelnut; and duck and foie gras parfait made with Sauternes (a sweet French Moscato-like wine) and rhubarb. All three are worth your time.
Moving on to larger plates, its things like calamari with café de Paris butter; mud crab brandade; and a must-order duck neck sausage cassoulet. There’s also a grill section, showcasing the best cuts of beef from across Victoria, and a few other proteins.
To round things off the dessert section offers a lot to like. The Jersey milk soft serve with hazelnut and extra virgin olive oil; and the ruby grapefruit with bay leaf crème and St-Germain, are both excellent.
To drink, it’s a wine list showcasing the best drops from around the world, including Australia’s largest selection of wines from the United States. Reine & La Rue uses a Coravin system, which means you can try glasses (or half glasses) of some of the more exclusive wines on the menu. The beer list is more considered and diverse than you usually find at restaurants around town, while a selection of French inspired house cocktails and classics round things out.
Reine & La Rue
380 Collins Street
Tue – Sat: 12:00pm to 2:30pm, 5:30pm to 9:30pm