Mash Design: Streets Ahead

Mash’s fit out for Jock Zonfrillo’s new Rundle Street restaurant is a dynamic addition to Adelaide’s east end.

The clever folk at Mash Design have done it again. Their most recent portfolio of branding, art direction and interiors has delivered some of the best design outcomes in the country – innovative work that is consistently dynamic and almost always overwhelmingly well received. What artistic directors and cofounders of the multi-disciplinary studio Dom Roberts and James Brown bring to the table is an energetic, fun and oh-so-cool aesthetic that is as intelligent as it is appealing. Their most recent interior fit out is Street-ADL, the highly anticipated new restaurant from ex-Magill Estate executive chef Jock Zonfrillo. Located on Rundle Street in the former Universal Wine Bar site, the two-level eatery and bar is a fine addition to the city’s east end. Zonfrillo has loosely divided the space into two areas and serves more complex, formal dishes in the upstairs level, while downstairs at street level a variety of ‘snack’ foods are on offer in a relaxed and casual atmosphere. In designing the fit-out Roberts took into consideration the two diverse dining experiences, but decided to treat the interior as one cohesive space. It’s a wise approach; two different menus may work, but two different design aesthetics would have simply been confusing. Zonfrillo was involved with the interior’s design from the very beginning, having purchased the furniture and light fittings before engaging Mash. So when Roberts came on board there were already strict design perimeters in place. His actual brief from Zonfrillo was something both massaged until a shared vision was reached. “Jock wanted something that involved using street art on the walls and although I liked the idea I thought it had somewhat played itself out,” says Roberts. “So what I was looking to do was still bring a street art ‘essence’ to the interior, but to do something that was a little bit different.” The result is a compelling design expression that enlivens the walls; making them the fit out’s most dynamic feature. Roberts installed a cluster of light-boxes on the wall behind the bar that acts as Street-ADL’s menu. street-adl-menu.jpg “The idea came from looking at old diners and street vendors,” he says. “And from the general chaos you see on the street when you’ve got signs everywhere and they’re all screaming at you – I wanted to take that feeling as inspiration.” The effect is stunning and the different colours and fonts achieve that sense of frenetic energy while still appearing elegantly composed against the interior’s earthcoloured furnishings and fittings. To match this bold installation, the opposing wall had to carry an equally strong statement. Roberts searched nationally and internationally before he found an artist whom he felt could meet the brief. Jacopo Ceccarelli was that artist – a Milan-based Italian painter who goes by the moniker 2501. Coming to Australia to paint a mural was no stretch for 2501, who recently travelled to Sao Paolo and Miami to do the same. The resulting work features the artist’s characteristic Op art-inspired graphics and whimsical subject matter, which genuinely adds an unexpected element to the overall fit-out. street-adl-look-inside.jpg The inclusion of the mural also highlights the value both Roberts and Zonfrillo place on artisanal practice. This attention to detail and craftsmanship is notable and the ‘hand of the artist’ is evident throughout Street-ADL, whether across the food or design. It heightens the customer’s dining experience and makes this east end establishment a lively restaurant that resonates as a result of the strong synergy between chef and designer. Images Photography by Sam Roberts

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