Earlier this week we were lucky enough to attend the opening of the highly anticipated Kangkong and Gypsy Dragon, which we predict will be the first of many new eateries and bars to feature in the Topham Mall redevelopment. Drinks were flowing on Tuesday night as we were treated to the smooth sounds of SA local Alice Haddy, and munched on some of the treats that will adorn Kangkong’s menu.
Kangkong is the restaurant part of the venture, perched on the edge of Waymouth St, it emits a welcoming glow to the heavy foot-traffic area with floor to ceiling windows. When you step inside you are greeted by a vision that is reflected in the menu, a collection of Asian flavours that have been given a contemporary twist. Favourites to look out for include the umami crusted salmon, roasted banana pannacotta and the delightfully deceiving Ferrero Rocher spring rolls with orange coulis.
Step next door and you will find Gypsy Dragon, Kangkong’s cheekier cousin. The team behind Gypsy Dragon have made good use of the laneway, which will serve a selected bar menu from Kangkong's kitchen, as well as a unique selection of Asian-inspired cocktails. The laneway is surrounded by the towering bars of one of Adelaide’s many car parks, which adds an interesting industrial element to the atmosphere, as well as a curious sense of concrete cosiness. The current (somewhat terrifying) clown-themed street art that currently covers the walls of Gypsy Dragon will be replaced by in the coming weeks by new street art that reflects the aesthetic of the bar.
Co-owner Rob Parsons spoke to us about Kangkong and Gypsy Dragon’s role in their chosen location and said that there were plans to set up a coffee cart for the morning commuters.
"It's really exciting to be a part of the redeveloped Topham Mall area,” Rob said.
“In the last few months we've really seen this area come together and tonight feels like the start of a culmination - not just for us, but for the area as whole.
“We owe a big thank you to Renew Adelaide and the City Council as well, for their foresight over what this area could become", says Rob.
It will be exciting to watch this restaurant/bar duo develop, particularly when it starts to heat up again and we can take full advantage of their al fresco seating out the front and Gypsy Dragon's outdoor vibes. In the meantime, we will cosy up in the confines of Kangkong and stuff ourselves with Ferrero Rocher spring rolls while sipping an Asahi.
Where: 44 Waymouth St
When: Monday-Friday for lunch and drinks, Monday-Saturday for dinner and drinks
All images via Meaghan Coles, Now and Then Photography