Bayside beauty comes full circle

Sorrento Catering owner and 360Q proprietor Barry Iddles is in the news again. Read this awesome article by Stephanie Azzopardi published in the Geelong Advertiser’s GT Magazine on October 22.

IT WAS on a day out that seasoned chef Barry Iddles noticed the 360Q restaurant at Queenscliff was still empty after closing about three years ago.

With restaurants at Sorrento and Falls Creek already under his charge, Barry saw the potential in the waterside gem in January, when he brought staff over from Sorrento for a day visiting the Twelve Apostles.

Barry – who has worked at the head of kitchens across the state – has fond memories of holidaying in the region, mainly at nearby Barwon Heads and Ocean Grove.

By June he had signed the lease and the rejuvenated 360Q was opened on October 8.

Inside, not much has changed from what the locals will remember – it is still light, bright, with stunning views of the boats docked on the water.

New modern furniture and other small tweaks have breathed new life into the grand building.

The menu, crafted by Barry and his head chef Mathew Hallam, is a culmination of Barry’s long service in the industry.

Barry was named Victorian Apprentice of the Year in 1975. Ten years later he was named Australian Chef of the Year.

He travels internationally at least twice a year exploring new flavours.

“It’s a collection of global favourites from my travels,” he says.

“I just wanted to serve good food in a relaxed atmosphere; embracing the locals and the tourists.”

The bah xeo Vietnamese rice pancake filled with prawns, crab and a crunchy salad is one of the restaurant’s most popular dishes.

The crispy salt and pepper calamari with fried Asian herbs and wasabi mayo has also proven a hit.

Staff at 360Q endeavour to source fresh produce from across the region.

Mussels from Portarlington make up a delicious dish with white wine, tomato, basil and chilli broth and hot crusty bread.

While Point Lonsdale tomatoes top off the restaurant’s sweet corn ravioli.

For dessert, the white chocolate crème brulee with blueberry compote and pistachio praline is hard to pass up.

“I live for food,” Barry confesses.

The menu is about 80 per cent gluten free.

The kitchen also produces a select range of chutneys and jams, so that visitors are able to “take a piece of Queenscliff home”.

Currently the restaurant is open for breakfast and lunch on weekdays and for breakfast, lunch and dinner on weekends.

Barry says the restaurant will bump up its hours to all meals, seven days a week, during the summer. A function room upstairs shows off even better views over the water and is booking out fast.

Walking up to the building’s unique tower, which is also licenced, you are enraptured by stunning 360 degrees views of Swan Bay and beyond; it is then when you realise how fitting 360Q’s name is.

Open for about two weeks, Barry says he and his team have been welcomed into the Queenscliff community with open arms.

His daughter Kylie works on food preparation, food styling and the catering and events side of the business.

“People say to us, we’re so glad it’s open again,” he says.

Barry, at 61, has no intention of slowing down, with more plans both overseas and closer to home.

A Spanish salsa band will play and paella will be served at the front of the restaurant on tomorrow, Sunday, October 23, while visitors can enjoy an afternoon of jazz music accompanied by New Orleans gumbo on the Melbourne Cup long weekend.

Patrons can also look forward to a Sunday roast three-course special to be launched at the restaurant soon.

Barry says he is nowhere near ready to retire.

“You’ve got to be prepared, if you’re prepared, everything is easy,” he smiles.

“It’s pretty exciting.”

360Q is located at 2 Wharf Street, Queenscliff. Ph: (03) 5257 4200. Email enquiries@360q.com.au. Email: www.360q.com.au