A sun-drenched Rathdowne Street on an autumnal afternoon set the scene for our chat with Dom Gattermayr, co-founder of the beloved Carlton eatery Florian. Up now on the FWF Journal, read our conversation about Florian’s approach
to dining, her current favourite dining hot spots, personal style and more.
Inspired by what’s currently in season, recreate Dom’s Citrus Scallop Crudo with her recipe created exclusively for FWF subscribers.
Melbourne is a city spoilt for choice with cafés and eateries, what is it about Florian’s approach to dining that keeps patrons lining up for a seat?
I think our approach to the food we offer, seasonality and produce driven dishes means we can always offer new things and change things up to keep it interesting for our customers. Rose and I designed the shop ourselves to be warm and homey, so it definitely feels genuine and something we are proud of, not a sterile space. You come from a family of hospitality veterans; was opening Florian always an inevitable reality for you?
I didn't think so, but as more time went on I realised it's what I wanted to do, and that it wouldn't mean leaving my other passions behind, I could just integrate them into Florian. I worked as a publicist for years before Florian's inception and now I use those skills to build the business. We host lots of events and dinners and manage all the social media ourselves.
Your co-founder, Rose, has been friends with you since childhood. How have you navigated the transition of friends to business partners?
It's been very organic, and I guess comes from knowing each other better than anyone and having good communication.
What is your go-to look for a day at work?
It depends, but I generally go for jeans, Birkenstock clogs and a plain t-shirt in the kitchen, and then something more exciting for when I work front of house, like a dress and some sneakers. Comfy shoes always.
Where are your current favourite places to dine in Melbourne?
I love Malaymas in Fitzroy North for a quick meal, Public Wine Store has the best wine and always something new to eat, and Etta on Lygon St is always delicious.
“Seasonality and produce driven dishes means we can always offer new things and change things up to keep it interesting for our customers.”
Which A23 pieces are you wearing to an after-work wine?
Definitely my chocolate brown Greta Chinos and blue knit Henry Vest. I don't think I'll take them off!
Outside of work, how do you like to spend your time?
Mostly eating and going for walks in between eating, or to the market to buy something to cook. I live close to the city, so love to stroll in and look around and also browsing the antique bazaar if I'm feeling like I want to get out of the city.