Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Industrial design has become increasingly popular in restaurants, but few can claim to be simultaneously edgy and cozy. Heartattack and Vine, in the Carlton neighborhood of Melbourne, Australia, check off both boxes—as well those for chic, warm, laid-back, and “Can we just go there already?”

Named for Tom Waits’s 1980 album and modeled on a Venetian ciccetti bar—the Italian equivalent of the Spanish tapas bar—Heartattack and Vine is an unusual combination of café (with specialty coffees and pastries) by day and small-plates bar and restaurant by night. Through some creative thinking, designer Nicky Adams made the most of a narrow, light-challenged “bowling alley” of a shop and turned it into a loftlike space that feels at once hip and timeless.

Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Architect/Nicky Adams-Photo-Lisa Cohen

For Heartattack and Vine, Adams borrowed several elements from the classic trattoria, including graceful arches to separate rooms, vaulted ceilings, exposed beams, and plenty of warm woods. These were melded with the modern and industrial: brick floors and accent walls, copper accents around tables and on benches/bars, and a large graphic insignia on the front window.

The heart of the design—both visually and physically—is the 40-foot recycled timber bar, which stretches nearly from the entrance all the way into the back room. Over the bar, Adams suspended 23 antique cut-crystal lights, with the occasional turquoise pendant adding a bright splash to the moody charcoal, cream, walnut, and brick color palette.

Whether at the communal wood table or copper bar in the front, the long wood bar, two-top tables, or bloodred-upholstered banquettes, it’s hard to choose the best seat in Heartattack and Vine’s house—making it easy to see why it was nominated for several Australian interior design awards.

Stay tuned for our next look at another of the world’s best-designed restaurants.

Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Architect/Nicky Adams-Photo/Lisa Cohen

Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Architect/Nicky Adams-Photo/Lisa Cohen

Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Architect/Nicky Adams-Photo-Lisa Cohen

Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Architect/Nicky Adams-Photo/ Lisa Cohen

Heartattack and Vine:: Adventures in Design

Architect/ Nicky Adams-Photo/ Lisa Cohen

Architect/ Nicky Adams-Photo/ Lisa Cohen

Architect/ Nicky Adams-Photo/ Lisa Cohen

Until next time,

LIVE A LIFE WELL CURATED

This article was written by Contributing Writer, Robin Catalano

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