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QT Newcastle reveals rooftop bar and signature restaurant – Jana

As they creep closer to their official opening in early June 2022, Newcastle’s newest five-star hotel, QT, has announced a modern Australian restaurant, Jana, will open in conjunction with its rooftop bar. Swell was delighted to speak to chef Massimo Speroni to find out more about what we can expect.

The iconic David Jones building in Newcastle’s Hunter Street Mall has undergone an impressive transformation in recent months with five-star hotel, QT Newcastle set to open its doors in early June 2022. The hotel will not only offer a unique stay for travellers and stay-cationers alike, but has this week revealed part of its restaurant offering including a modern Australian bar and grill – Jana. 

The restaurant will be found on the hotel’s ground floor, while Rooftop at QT will be Newcastle’s tallest open air rooftop bar featuring uninterrupted views of the harbour. Jana will be spearheaded by internationally acclaimed chef, Massimo Speroni, who most recently worked at the multi-award-winning Brisbane restaurant, Bacchus. We had the opportunity to ask Massimo a few questions about Jana.

What kind of atmosphere are you hoping to create at Jana?

The goddess Jana is named after is represented by two faces – one facing the past and one facing the present.

When designing the menu, I was focused on bringing this vision to life using modern techniques with traditional flavours, and hints of my own Italian heritage.

Jana’s dishes are elevated yet approachable, showcasing the best premium ingredients from local producers and providores.

Hiramasa Kingfish
Dry-aged ribeye, Chitarra pasta with sea urchin

What’s one thing on the menu that you won’t find anywhere else in Newcastle?

I feel that Jana will add to the region’s dining scene with dishes and ingredients you can’t taste anywhere else.

We’ve travelled extensively to unearth local producers and providores to create seasonally inspired dishes with flavours and textures you won’t have tasted before.

This is seen in the Hiramasa Kingfish Corn – featuring sour cream, coriander, quinoa and lime.

What are you most looking forward to about working in Newcastle and the Hunter Valley?

I’ve always enjoyed the Hunter Valley region and have had the opportunity to spend some time in the community after moving in January to join the QT family. It’s a region that’s close to my heart and is home to some incredible producers. I’ve used the last few months to travel, exploring wineries, farms and producers to gather inspiration for the menu.

QT Newcastle will open on 9 June 2022. 

Chef Massimo Speroni
Words: Hannah Mills | Photography: Supplied by QT Newcastle

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