“Toughest conditions we have seen”: More Sydney restaurants forced to close

“Toughest conditions we have seen”: More Sydney restaurants forced to close
Image: Redbird Chinese, Redfern. Image: Facebook

by DOUGAL TSAKALOS-STEWART

 

Two popular sibling restaurants, Tequila Daisy and Redbird Chinese, permanently closed their doors last night as the latest in a series of hospitality closures.

Hamish Ingham and Rebecca Lines, owners of both Tequila Daisy, a Mexican-inspired restaurant in Barangaroo, and the hatted Redbird Chinese in Redfern, announced the decision in a statement yesterday.

“It’s with a heavy heart that we announce the closing of Tequila Daisy and Redbird Chinese, effective immediately,” the pair said.

“It’s been an incredibly difficult decision, especially saying goodbye to the staff, suppliers, our hospitality community and guests who have supported us over all these years.”

The double closure was due to the increasingly familiar roll call of restaurant struggles: high rents, increasing costs, staff shortages, and customers staying home.

“We started our first business during the global financial crisis and successfully navigated COVID. However, the current trading conditions are the toughest we have seen in our time of operating venues. With another quieter year approaching, we have decided it is best to call time on our venues,” they said in a statement.

The news comes only days after Tetsuya’s announced its shock closure – the fine-dining restaurant, which uses seasonal Japanese flavours enhanced with French technique, will close on July 31 after 35 years in business.

“Our plans to relocate Tetsuya’s to a new site after it closes at the end of July have unfortunately not worked out and I have made the very difficult decision to permanently close the restaurant,” Tetsuya Wakuda said in a statement.

“We have spent the last 18 months planning the move and the new restaurant so this was not an easy decision, but sometimes things just don’t go to plan.”

Wakuda had been searching for potential new locations since the Kent Street site was earmarked for development in 2018.

Restaurants in Sydney have recently undergone an unfortunate trend of administrations and closing since the start of the year.

Popular chain stores Bondi Pizza and Elements Bar and Grill both went into administration in March. The businesses said that COVID-19 pandemic and an increase in operating costs were responsible.

 

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