Sydney’s Prince of Pastas takes centre stage at Maggie Joan’s
From Down Under, a zealous force makes its way to the thriving enclave of Amoy Street’s back lane with its eccentric energy and relentless creativity.
Come 16 September, Maggie Joan’s welcomes award winning Sydney-based restaurant Acme for a kitchen takeover in a two-day exclusive dining experience. Acme’s Chef and Co-owner Mitch Orr steers the ship with the spirit of Acme – a communal dining experience with grazing and sharing portions of good, delicious cooking with a pinch of unconventional fun. It’s all about dancing in the kitchen, playing loud hip hop, and quirky dishes. Since its launch in 2014, the restaurant has clinched awards, including Time Out Sydney’s Restaurant of the Year in 2015.
Dubbed Sydney’s Prince of Pasta, Mitch introduces to Maggie Joan’s diners dishes inspired by Asian flavours coupled with a passion for Italian cuisine. Menus at Acme are full of surprises and that’s what diners can expect as well. The sharing menu here will see Mitch bringing out the essence of Acme with seasonal ingredients as well as those sourced from local wet markets. The menu also introduces several Acme favourites such as the Baloney Sandwich with mortadella and potato bread, and the Macaroni, Pig’s Head, Egg Yolk – a pasta interpretation of traditional Filipino sisig.
His kitchen takeover at Maggie Joan’s marks his first visit to Singapore. “I’m very excited to show Maggie Joan’s diners what Acme is about,” says Mitch. Of course, Mitch also brings with him his enthusiasm ‘to eat like crazy’ and is looking forward to try the mix of high-end dining and street food Singapore has to offer.
“Despite the cuisines of each restaurant being different there are still a raft of things we can learn from Mitch and the team during their stay,” says Maggie Joan’s co-owner Darren Micallef. “From different cooking techniques, how they choose flavour combinations to how they create the vibe and atmosphere during each service – these are examples of how we can make Maggie Joan’s grow.”
The menu is available for pre-order on Chope at SGD75 per person for lunch and dinner on 16 September, and dinner only on 17 September.
About Mitch Orr, Head Chef & Co-Owner of Acme
Acme’s Chef Mitchell Orr, or Mitch for short, jokes that cooking lessons in high school meant being surrounded by girls in class and free lunch, but it was also then when he started to realise his growing ambitions to be a chef.
Born and raised in Sydney, he began to pursue his passion around the city’s esteemed establishments including Pello, Pilu at Freshwater and Sepia. It was at Pilu where he made acquaintance with his mentor, celebrity chef Giovanni Pilu. From there blossomed his love for Italian cuisine and instilled in him a respect for produce and culture. While passionate about tradition, Mitch is not one to shy from experimentation. He plays on nostalgia and
delivers house-made pasta with a creative mix of seasonal ingredients. He takes inspiration from his Filipino neighbours of his childhood, the diverse food cultures in Sydney as well as his travels to Asia.
Mitch clinched the prestigious Josephine Pignolet Young Chef of the Year award in 2010, which took him to stints around USA and Europe, including one at three-starred Osteria Francescana by Massimo Bottura in Modena, Italy.
Later in October 2014, Mitch opened Acme together with partners Andy Emerson, Cam Fairbairn and Ed Loveday (Acme is a combination of the first letter of each partner’s name).
In June, Mitch took over one-starred Lyle’s in East London to introduce his pasta dishes. At the same time, together with his Acme partners, he launched late night wine bar Bar Brosé in Sydney. In between his music projects and tucking into fried chicken, lup cheong and rice, Mitch finds time to share his food eccentricities on his Instagram account.
About Oliver Hyde, Head Chef of Maggie Joan’s
British-born Ollie Hyde has chalked up some very impressive mileage in high-level training and experience at leading restaurants in UK, France and Singapore for his youthful 26 years.
His interest piqued by childhood explorations of woods and coastlines and a family affinity with cooking (his father and grandma were chefs), Chef Ollie made up his mind at age 13. After a series of early stints in lesser kitchens, he joined the celebrated 3-Michelin-star Waterside Inn in Bray, England. After 3 years working with the highly respected Roux brothers at Waterside, Chef Ollie left it for another ‘celebrity’ famous, 3-starred English establishment, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay.
In 2012, Chef Ollie left the UK to join the 1-Michelin-star Hostellerie la briqueterie at a 5-star hotel in France. Exactly a year later he travelled again, this time to Asia, to join Pollen in Singapore as Sous Chef. While he was there, Pollen was named best Western fine dining restaurant in Singapore by Epicure magazine.
Chef Ollie brings energy and undeniable talent to Maggie Joan’s. He delights in the restaurant’s funky atmosphere and its dedication to seasonal ingredients and assiduous artisanship. “I love it when everything comes from our hands,” says the Chef. “I’m proud of what I’m serving. I want to take Maggie Joan’s as far as it can possibly go.”