To say 2022 has been a rocky year for restaurateur Michael Tassis might be an understatement. In late-February, his popular riverside venues OPA Bar + Mezze and Massimo Restaurant & Bar were both inundated by flood waters. At OPA, the water levels quickly rose from ankle height to above-head hight in the space of a few days, meaning just about everything important was submerged. Meanwhile, Michael was a few months away from the closure of his other waterfront eateries Rico Bar + Dining, George’s Paragon Seafood Restaurant and Fatcow Steak & Lobster, all of which are scheduled to shutter in July ahead of Eagle Street Pier’s redevelopment. It’s a case of Murphy’s Law, if you ask Michael – nevertheless, backed by a strong team, Michael has spent the past four months rebuilding his flood-affected restaurants. OPA Bar + Mezze reopened to the public last Thursday June 23, showing off a few snazzy new elements and menu items while also retaining its coastal-Mediterranean aesthetic.
Michael has used the opportunity to fully refurbish OPA Bar + Mezze, upgrading the quality of materials, kitchen equipment and improving the bathrooms. Structurally the venue remains largely the same, but guests will spy an extended deck near OPA’s casual bar space, giving the snack and cocktail crowd a better view of the Story Bridge. The biggest changes are evident in the menu, which has expanded to include a brand-new seven-day breakfast and brunch offering, which is a great addition to a riverside strip without many reliable morning options. The selection includes Greek-inflected dishes like sand crab omelette (with kefelograviera and pita bread), Cypriot eggs (poached eggs with yoghurt sauce, spices, mortadella and village bread), rizogalo (Greek rice pudding with poached pear) and an egg yiros, which sees a warm pita filled with fried eggs, mortadella, kefalograviera, haloumi chips, loukaniko sausage and a dollop of lemon-mustard sauce. A third banquet menu has been added, one that focuses entirely on seafood – think piles of king prawns, ocean trout, lobster salad, calamari, chargrilled octopus and more. On the drinks side of things, OPA’s cocktail list has been given a shake-up with the addition of a signature ouzo, vodka, watermelon and mint slushie, as well as a pineapple-and-chocolate-infused old fashioned, available alongside a condensed array of wines.
OPA Bar + Mezze is now open seven days. You can find booking details, menu info and operating hours in the Stumble Guide.