DAVE NELSON | ON CREATING MELBOURNE’S HIPPEST NEW RESTAURANT

Aug 25, 2017

On today’s Show, we speak with Dave Nelson about his newest venture, Sash, Melbourne’s new Japanese Pizza Bar, which is an absolute game changer. We also discuss his other businesses and how he manages the significant challenges across various industries, states and countries. He’s a pure entrepreneur, with an impenetrable self-belief, calmness and maturity that belies his years.

If anything is good for pounding humility into you permanently, it’s the restaurant business. – Anthony Bourdain

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Background – They Have Created Something Special Here

Hold on to your chopsticks, Melbourne. An NYC-style Japanese concept restaurant just opened on Chapel St…and its specialty is sushi pizza.

Sash has popped-up down Chapel St’s Windsor end, a painfully trendy strip where cocktail bars are beginning to outnumber people. And the blue chip address is more than justified: the menu was designed by head chef Ken Tut from Ichi Ni and Ichi Ni Nana. Kyle Rose from Chin Chin is heading up the bar, slinging Harajuku cocktails, 20 craft beers and a well-stocked list of traditional Japanese sakes. The fit-out was curated by Black Milk Designs, who shipped in 3.5 tonnes of rock, 1km of polished timber and black steel to style the moody-mod decor. In short, this place is a class act.

Of course, the real story at Sash is the food: an eye-searing cavalcade of beautiful, technicolour food art. There’s the range of signature Japanese pizzas, with toppings like sashimi tuna, mango, strawberry, wasabi mayonnaise and ginger, served on blackened squid-ink dough. Crazy, unorthodox…and absolutely delicious.

Rice-based pizzas (AKA ‘Sushizzas’) are also on the cards, along with a selection of fried poke balls (a sort of Japanese Arancini, stuffed with salmon and wasabi green tea mayo), poke bowls, sushi tacos and even sushi burritos. For afters, we’d recommend either the Banoffi Nutella Pizza or the jewel-like macaron ice-cream sandwiches—our frontrunner for Prettiest Dessert 2017.

Co-owners Kyle Stagoll and Dave Nelson have created something pretty special here. An all-class fusion cocktail bar that’s actually pushing the Japanese envelope. Sushi pizza sceptics, take note. Sash is the real deal.

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