Townsville Bulletin - Townsville Eye - - Food -

BWORDS: est mates Josh Sinnott and Ash­ley Cath­cart have been on a steep learn­ing curve over the past six months, with their first foray into the hos­pi­tal­ity world.

Sinnott, 28, and Cath­cart, 26, are now the proud own­ers of their own patch of Flin­ders Street af­ter ditch­ing their old ca­reers as a soil tester and elec­tri­cian to open Kryptic Lounge Bar and Restaurant, for­merly Casa Lounge Bar.

“We were do­ing a lot of away work in ru­ral ar­eas and we wanted to do some­thing for our­selves,” Sinnott said.

“We had a lot of good times here and we could see the po­ten­tial. It needed a lot of love when we bought it and we’re get­ting there. We’ve made a lot of changes so far and we’ve still got more to go.”

Among those changes are a re­freshed in­te­rior and a few touches to the multi-level gar­den dining area out the back. There’s also a new menu out this week, featuring some old favourites like the Reef and Beef, and burg­ers; and po­ten­tial new crowd-pleasers like the lamb shanks.

But it’s at the bar where the boys



have been able to un­leash their cre­ative sides, com­ing up with some in­ter­est­ing mixes for sig­na­ture cock­tails.

“One of them’s called a Back­handed Panda which has Cham­bord, Paraiso ly­chee liqueur, le­mon­ade and fresh lime. That’s the most pop­u­lar one,” Sinnott said. “When some­one walks in and doesn’t know what they feel like, I make them that and I’ve never had some­one say they don’t like it.

“I also do an ap­ple crum­ble cock­tail and it tastes ex­actly like an ap­ple crum­ble pie. You can taste the pas­try and the whole lot in a cock­tail.”

Six months in, the pair say there’s been a whole lot to learn about run­ning a busi­ness. Things like man­ag­ing staff have proven chal­leng­ing at times, but some of the hard­est ad­just­ments have been in the com­plete change of life­style from con­struc­tion and min­ing to hos­pi­tal­ity.

“Be­fore I was get­ting up at six in the morn­ing and I was in bed by nine o’clock ev­ery night. Now it’s like, you’ll wake up at 10 in the morn­ing and you’ll go to sleep at three o’clock. It’s def­i­nitely been a change,” Sinnott said.

“I’m still try­ing to get used to be­cause I’ve done my whole ca­reer on early wake-ups and late fin­ishes – big 12-hour days,” Cath­cart agrees.

“I’ve ac­tu­ally just re­turned from Europe so I did nearly the whole first six months away. I’m sort of just com­ing to grips with it all now. I’m still in travel mode and I’ve strug­gled to get my head around it a bit.

“It’s def­i­nitely been an eye opener. But it hasn’t been as bad as peo­ple would think as in­ex­pe­ri­enced hos­pi­tal­ity peo­ple. A lot of it’s com­mon­sense, so we can eas­ily adapt.”


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