This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

Welcome to Été Restaurant

Interiors

This afternoon we’re just *a tiny bit* envious of our northern neighbours, as we take a look inside new Sydney Harbour hotspot, Été Restaurant.

A fusion of chic French decor and contemporary ‘Aussie’ details, Foolscap Studio’s interiors of this waterside establishment are a spectacular canvas for seasonal arrangements – both the culinary and floral kind!

18th January, 2018

Inside new Sydney hotspot Été RestaurantPhoto – Nikki To.

Foolscap Studio’s were the establishment’s interior architects, as well as art directors for all graphics, artwork and branding. Photo – Nikki To.

We were inspired by chef Drew Bolton’s food philosophy, which is an homage to classic French cuisine, while embracing contemporary cooking styles and dining approaches,’ tells Kathrin Wheib of Foolscap Studio. Photo – Nikki To.

The studio worked closely Chicago-based artist John Zabawa. Photo – Nikki To.

Artworks, murals, hand-drawn typefaces and little illustrations that hark back to French cookbook design from the 1980s. Photo – Nikki To.

Comfy raw materials are coupled with little luxurious details, such as leather-bound handles and table legs. Photo – Nikki To.

Foolscap Studio was inspired by chef Drew Bolton’s food philosophy – an homage to classic French cuisine that also embraces contemporary cooking styles. Photo – Nikki To.

The client wanted a space that was inviting and down-to-earth,’ adds Kathrin. Photo – Nikki To.

Foolscap designed long tables inspired by farmhouse trestle tables.Photo – Nikki To.

With offices in Sydney and Melbourne, Foolscap Studio doesn’t take itself too seriously! Photo – Nikki To.

Elle Murrell
Thursday 18th January 2018

‘We shared some beautiful photography of the space on Instagram, and people’s reactions and messages to us were incredible. images have been shared so much, it feels viral to us!’ – Kathrin Wheib, Senior Interior Architect at Foolscap Studio.

Opening last month, Été Restaurant is pretty close to what we’d dream up if one of our Tasty Tuesday shoots sets could evolve into a real, full-blown restaurant (one can dream?). Located in Sydney’s Barangaroo, the waterside eatery showcases the work of Foolscap Studio, the project’s interior architects as well as the art directors for all graphics, artwork and branding.

Alongside recruiting an international artist with a penchant for striking lines and colour blocking, Foolscap also enlisted a local metal worker for custom outdoor furniture and leatherworker for crafted wine menus, in addition to flying in decorative modernist lighting from France to honour their Provence-meets-Sydney Harbour vision.

We chatted with Senior Interior Architect Kathrin Wheib about fitting out the 210-square-metres space. Added bonus: she helped us brush up on some rusty French, too!

What was your concept for the restaurant design?

Été means ‘Summer’ in French, and the premise of the restaurant is to convey the evocative sense of change and anticipation that comes with the seasons, inviting patrons to experience a little taste of the countryside while they dine. Both Australian and French cultural identities are inextricably tied to seasonality and landscape and so, as the menu constantly changes to reflect the arrival and departure of the seasons… so too does the interior décor.

We were inspired by chef Drew Bolton’s food philosophy, which is an homage to classic French cuisine, while embracing contemporary cooking styles and dining approaches. The interior concept draws inspiration from classic French elements, re-interpreting them for a Sydney waterside location. 

Can you run us through some of the stand-out features?

The graphic concept for Été features artworks, murals, hand-drawn typefaces and little illustrations that hark back to French cookbook design from the 1980s.

We worked closely with John Zabawa, a Chicago-based artist, and also directed the production of seasonal window illustrations, floral and fresh produce installations, the menu designs and other collateral. A local metal worker created the custom outdoor furniture from our designs, and Sarah van Oosterom crafted the leather wine menus, while the decorative modernist lighting was handmade in France.

What kind of atmosphere have you tried to create here?

The client wanted a space that was inviting and down-to-earth. We used predominantly natural and raw materials, and coupled this with little luxurious details, such as leather-bound handles and table legs, carved timber edges and stone inlays.

We designed long tables, which were inspired by farmhouse trestle tables. We wanted the look and feel of communal tables to reflect a convivial, modern atmosphere, but wanted diners to have a sense of privacy, too – something that seems to be less common these days. The dividers provide demarcation of space, which we thought necessary seeing how the food on offer is refined and at a higher price-point.

Did you encounter any challenges during this project, and what kind of feedback has it received?

The project was on hold for five months and the start-stop held things up a bit, but in our industry, you quickly learn this can be part-and-parcel, and you navigate schedules accordingly. In the end, it was quite a sweet turn of events that it opened at the start of Summer [Editor’s note: remember your newest French word?], rather than back in May!

We shared some of Nikki To’s beautiful photography of the space on Instagram and people’s reactions and messages to us were incredible. We’re so pleased with the whole project’s rendering, and are so proud of John Zabawa’s work – images of the mural have been shared so much, it feels viral to us!  It’s also great to see the first reviews of the restaurant rolling out over the past month or so: they’re all really positive and that’s what we exist for, to support our clients’ visions for their businesses.

One last thing, Foolscap (Fool’s-Cap? Fool-Scap?) Studio is a pretty unusual name?

Well! For starters, ‘foolscap’ is a paper size just a bit larger than A4. It’s an imperial measurement, so it’s not so common – and we’re a pretty individual lot! Traditionally it’s a lightweight paper used for drawing and of course, we do a lot of that. It’s nice to reference manual activities in this day of devices. The background story of the word is that back in the 1700s, a ‘fool’s cap’ was used as a watermark on paper. We’re happy with this etymology because we aim to never take ourselves too seriously.

Été Restaurant
100 Barangaroo Avenue,
Barangaroo, Sydney

Find out more about Foolscap Studio and see more projects on their website.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Interiors

A First Look at Melbourne’s Salon Mace

Melbourne’s newest boutique hair salon channels 'SoCal' understated lux.

Stays

Inside the New Spa at Halcyon House

A first-look at the brand new spa at one of Australia's most beautiful boutique hotels - Halcyon House in Cabarita Beach, NSW.
Sally Tabart

Interiors

The Penny Drop Takes Global Design Prize

The super-swish Box Hill cafe took out the biggest prize at the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards in London last month.

This Week

Food

Julia's Autumnal Weeknight Rocket and Hazelnut Pesto Linguine

Julia Busuttil Nishimura's linguine with a herby rocket and hazelnut pesto is a riff on the classic weeknight family meal by adding earthy,
Julia Busuttil Nishimura

Modernist Australia

A Modernist Mansion Fit For A 'Contemporary Goddess'!

Designed by architect Iwan Iwanoff in 1959, this incredible home in Mount Lawley, Western Australia is on the market.
Patricia Callan
  20 hours ago

News

A New Online Service That Designs Your Own Gallery Wall!

A new digital tool from Framefox allows you to build your own salon-style wall online, and have the final design delivered to your doorstep
Sponsored

Interiors

How To Nail The Bathroom Basics, According To Reece

A crash course in very excellent bathroom design, courtesy of bathrooms + kitchens merchandising leader at Reece Bathrooms, Daniella Santill...

Studio Visit

Experimental Designer Jessie French Is Shaping A Seaweed-Centric Future

The Melbourne artist shares her process of creating seaweed-based bioplastics, the beautiful resin-like homewares she makes from it + what t...

Stays

Northern NSW’s Newest Holiday House, Made From Recycled Materials

Book your stay at Rockhaven at Booyong – a new holiday house made from recycled materials located 40 minutes from Byron Bay.

Interiors

A Crash Course In Renovating Your Own Home From Top To Bottom, With BuildHer Collective

Rebeka Morgan and Kribashini Hannon of BuildHer Collective bring us a new book containing all the info you need to embark on building or ren...
Rebeka Morgan and Kribashini Hannon

Travel

Our Guide To The Perfect Road-Trip On The NSW Central Coast

From Terrigal and Avoca beaches to the lush landscape of Bouddi National Park, here's where to eat, sleep, visit + swim!
Sasha Gattermayr
  4 hours ago

News

An Extensive Art And Design Festival Taking Over Brisbane!

Brisbane Art Design (BAD) is a public art program bringing the Sunshine State’s exemplary creative scene to the fore throughout the month
Sponsored

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life Of Chrissy Lafian, Founder And Creative Director Of Suku

With teams in both Melbourne and Bali, Chrissy lets us in on how she runs the lifestyle brand she's built from scratch!

Architecture

A Surprise Garden Brings This 'Pop-Up' Home To Life

Figr creates a unique language between architectural and landscaped spaces to truly maximise this small footprint home for a family of three...

Design Eye

Suzanne Gorman on Modernising a Mid-Century Home

Taking into account considerations of form, function and scale, interior designer Suzanne Gorman shares her design approach for mid century

Homes

A Heartwarming Home Of A Stylist (And Family!)

Justine and Bob Murphy's warm and welcoming family home is like a slice of the country... in Northcote!

Stays

These New Luxury Coastal Cabins On Phillip Island Really Raise The Bar!

A tour of Fives Acres, a brand new boutique accommodation offering on Victoria's rugged South Coast.

On The Market

A Corner Store Turned Architectural Home Hits The Market In Brunswick

An 1883 shopfront turned architectural home with a pool and sauna is for sale in Brunswick!

Similar Stories

Interiors

A First Look at Melbourne’s Salon Mace

Melbourne’s newest boutique hair salon channels 'SoCal' understated lux.

Stays

Inside the New Spa at Halcyon House

A first-look at the brand new spa at one of Australia's most beautiful boutique hotels - Halcyon House in Cabarita Beach, NSW.
Sally Tabart

Interiors

The Penny Drop Takes Global Design Prize

The super-swish Box Hill cafe took out the biggest prize at the Restaurant & Bar Design Awards in London last month.

The Design Files acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files – we would love to hear from you.

Please email us here.