Arguably Collingwood’s greatest ode to Thai food, Easy Tiger is set to close on June 16, six years after its establishment on Smith Street.
Since its inception, owners Simon Hall, Jarrod Hudson and Suzanne Tyzack have had new families and new projects on the go, including Hall’s Major Major Café at 5 Smith Street, and Hudson and Tyzack’s Giant Steps in Healesville.
“We have achieved everything we wanted to with the restaurant – longevity, consistency, some nice awards and a great bunch of local customers,” Hall says. “We have both had kids in the last few years, and at night, it becomes harder to be away from the family.”
Hall says that while the business was successful–they’ve enjoyed a string of awards and established a loyal clientele over the years–Hall highlights the pressure of increasingly short attention spans on the food industry.
“I have loved Easy Tiger. Having amazing staff and brilliant customers has made it the best experience,” Hall says.
“I’d love there to be less of a focus on the hottest and newest… to find ways to places that have been around for a while but are still delivering a good product. [Restaurants] do need press as we get older. We need support to remind diners that we are still here, working hard to do a good job.”
Chef Kun Fu of Bowl Bowl Dumpling is set to take over the business, where he will be serving a cheap eats menu at the site, focusing on laksas, rice noodles and hot pot. The warm and inviting courtyard is likely to be turned into a beer garden, which will fit in well with its Smith Street counterparts.
Until Easy Tiger closes, they’ll be tipping their hats to some of the best and brightest on their menus past–their ma hor, a sticky minced pork and prawn ball on pineapple, as well as their son in law eggs, their chocolate and pandanus dumplings, and all of their rich and beautifully-balanced curries… pretty much everything on their menu is a must-try before they say their final goodbye.
And it’s not all over yet. Hall also hints that Major Major might be injecting some Easy Tiger into their offering. “I’d like to take [Major Major] into some specialty dinners; introduce some Thai perhaps one night a week,” Hall says. “I know some of my chefs from Easy Tiger are really keen.” Sign us up.