The former owners of successful winery restaurant Arimia Estate have opened bookings for their new culinary venture on the main street of Margaret River.
Located at the top of the popular Western Australian tourist town in a newly transformed space, de’sendent will open its doors on Thursday January 25th, 2024, with reservations online now.
Owners Ann Spencer and Executive Chef Evan Hayter are behind the project, which Hayter describes as the next incarnation of Arimia, but distinctly different. “The approach will be seasonal, refined dining… but the mood will be darker, more intimate,” said Hayter.
The new 35-seat restaurant was born from the passion and vision behind Arimia Estate, which built a strong reputation for its unwavering dedication to growing and sourcing high-quality, local, organic produce from suppliers who cared deeply for the land. “Guests would come back to Arimia because it stood for something,” said Spencer. “Evan is deeply passionate about where his ingredients come from – how they’re grown and reared, and ensuring they’re sourced from like-minded producers who share our values.”
“We forged a unique partnership at Arimia, and overcame a lot of challenges. de’sendent is the evolution of an important story, and represents our determination to share our dining philosophy with the world,” she said.
When asked about the inspiration for his approach, Hayter’s answer is simple: “Flavour.” Guests can expect high-end West Australian ingredients including abalone, full-blooded Waygu beef, marron and uni (sea urchin), sourced from passionate, small-batch suppliers. A diverse wine list will showcase premium local, national and global wines that complement the calibre of the food.
The name de’sendent signifies the cultivation of a new culinary chapter for business partners Hayter and Spencer, as well as treasured family ties. “Arimia was named after Ann’s two daughters, while the new restaurant’s logo is a drawing by my late brother. I’ve always wanted to incorporate him into what I do,” said Hayter.
“He loved to draw, and he drew some pretty interesting things as an adult. The logo is a quirky little dude with three legs wearing a dress… I mean, my brother was ahead of his time,” Hayter quipped.
On the spelling of de’sendent, Hayter remarked that Arimia was a mash-up of Spencer’s daughters names but was often misspelled. “We’ve continued that tradition by deliberately misspelling de’sendent. The apostrophe’s just to mess with people,” he pointed out. There’s a link to Hayter’s passion for punk rock, too; a not-so-subtle nod to his favourite American punk band, The Descendents.
Local designer Kerry Brooks is leading the restaurant’s interior architecture, which she says is driven by the narrative of personal history; an enduring legacy of what came before. Brooks describes the building as “unassuming”, but asserts that the interiors will be far from it. “The space will depict a timeless, classical elegance that complements an elevated dining experience,” she said.
An open kitchen will facilitate an intimate connection between diners and the culinary team, with dishes personally served by the chefs, including Hayter himself. “This was a considered design decision, to evoke warmth and invite a sense of comfort,” said Brooks.
Reservations are now available online for de’sendent, which will be open for dinner Wednesday – Saturday.