Gingerboy

Gingerboy

Architect
Elenberg Fraser Architecture
Location
Melbourne, Australia
Project Year
2006
Category
Restaurants

Gingerboy

Elenberg Fraser Architecture as Architects

Experiences are rarely just visual, they are multi-sensory – how something feels, looks, smells, tastes and sounds is integral to our embedded memory of space. For Teague Ezard’s second restaurant we combined two quintessentially Asian experiences – the hawker market and the Shanghai tea room – into one elegant eating space that defies the status quo of fine dining. This is a restaurant to remember. ‘Approximately’ one million LED lights are scattered over the black ceiling; you can smell the food frying as you dine under the night’s sky. The restaurant has a buzz without the accompanying acoustic issues – we overcame these problems by lining the room in audio recording studio foam covered with black-coated bamboo. You can not only hear yourself speak but hear the people sitting next to you without shouting – unprecedented! Bamboo is also important as it reflects the pan-Asian theme of Gingerboy’s menu, it is a plant that is common to all Asian countries and has been used for walls, ceilings, floors and even the tables. The dark gloss blends with the clear acrylic chairs, surfaces disappear letting diners focus on the tasks at hand. Known as the Hollywood of the East in the 20s and 30s when the Chinese film industry was booming, Shanghai was a cultural melting pot of wealth and underground dealings. The dark timber finishes call to mind the glamour and ritual of the Shanghai tearoom and features such as the low hanging black fringed lantern to the front of the restaurant recreate the subdued intimacy of these environments. The glamour continues with the gold tiles on the street-front giving the restaurant a distinct identity – a shining beacon in the laneway it inhabits. The bar is black gloss with the back panel illuminated by abstracted pages of Teague Ezard’s cookbook Lotus: Asian Flavours. Whether you want to dine under the stars and enjoy the fresh flavours of the hawker-market or immerse yourself in the old world opulence of the Shanghai tea room, Gingerboy has something for everyone’s taste … literally.

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Project Credits
Zeitz MOCAA (Museum of Contemporary Art Africa)
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Zeitz MOCAA (Museum of Contemporary Art Africa)

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