French chef Mouchel prepares to bid farewell to Crown

MELBOURNE CBD development The Duke of Wellington slipped quietly under the radar last year when entrepreneur Paul Mathis passed on his original deal to create a three-level pub-restaurant in Flinders Street that would rival his first big venture, Transport Hotel (now on the market at $35 million-plus). Enter pub group Open House, already operating four inner-city pubs and having a major tilt at the food-wine thing with this greenfields project built around an old corner pub. FormerBotanical manager and restaurant consultant Erez Gordon has joined OH to realise its plans for a smart pub, wine bar and high-end restaurant over three levels. His first task: find an executive chef. “It’s a narrow field,” concedes Gordon, “because it needs someone creative at a culinary level but with managerial and team-leading skills too.” A rare beast. The good news is that Gordon knows food. With building just beginning, The DW is hoping to open mid-August.

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