If it’s the wow factor you’re after, you’ve come to the right place. Located on the 40th floor of Oakwood Premier Melbourne (that’s 140 metres above the ground), Strato is a sleek and sophisticated 60-seat fine dining restaurant with spectacular views that will, quite frankly, blow you away.
Entry is via a private elevator from the hotel lobby. Strato shares the 40th level with sister venue Sky Bar – an equally stunning space (complete with seven-metre glass windows, al fresco terrace and a killer cocktail menu) that is ideal for a pre- or post-dinner tipple. The vibe at the restaurant itself is refined elegance, with luxe touches like plush velvet banquettes, sheer curtains and a central bar with enormous stone benchtop. It’s the type of establishment that wouldn’t look out of place in Los Angeles or New York City.
The modern Australian menu is best described as a multi-sensorial experience inspired by five elements: the atmosphere (air), the hydrosphere (water), the cryosphere (ice and permafrost), the lithosphere (Earth’s upper rocky layer) and the biosphere (living things). It evolves with each season, and the current degustation includes familiar classics with a twist: beef carpaccio followed by roasted scallops with cucumber ketchup and sea greens, and a wild mushroom and truffle risotto topped with a generous quenelle of chive mascarpone.
The main course of a Wagyu tenderloin served with asparagus and cauliflower foam is cooked to perfection, while dessert – in the form of a smoked dark chocolate cremeux with burnt vanilla ice cream and cacao nibs – is a pleasing finale. Cracking the shard of paper-thin biscuit that sits atop is particularly satisfying.
Wash it all down with an aptly named Sky High Martini, made using oyster shell gin, manzanilla sherry and grappa. All cocktails come courtesy of Charlie Ainsbury and the team at Proof and Co, while the wine list comprises some cracking local drops with a couple of classic French options, too.
The food is a solid offering in the hotel restaurant space, but let’s be honest; you’re here for the views – and trust us, they do not disappoint. Depending on where you’re seated, you’ll be able to see right across the CBD (including the Yarra River, Arts Centre and MCG) or out to Port Phillip Bay. As far as ‘grammable moments go, it doesn’t get much better than this.
Strato is open Wednesday to Sunday, 5pm until late. For bookings, head to the website.