The Yum List chats with Josh Green of Southern Rock Seafood about his rise to fame and discovers some behind the scene hilarities.
What do you do and how did you get into the industry?
I invested in my friend Tim Boucaut’s new import business back in 2008. In 2012 he left and that coincided with Ben Yong opening BIG and inviting us to his PUBLIKA store where SHUCKED was born. The shoplot next to our fishmonger came up on 2014 and, knowing we had the best seafood in town we thought we better have a go at creating a seafood restaurant! So, the Southern Rock Seafood kitchen was born with Paul James as a beach shack in Bangsar!
Share with us an interesting story from behind the scenes.
We opened on Valentine’s day 2015 and the first eve was truly Fawlty Towers – the kitchen printer was either not working or printing double – and chef Paul nearly murdered our very own Manuel.
What’s the best/ worst part of your job?
The food is awesome! I have the best oyster ever every day, and the chef is developing new dishes with our products. Seeing friends, old and new, is very enjoyable too.
The worst is that it never stops. It’s hard to shut the doors and go away for the weekend.
What’s your favourite meal at Southern Rock Seafood?
The Kitchen Dozen – takes you around the world and you experience the range of oyster flavours. I’m also loving our Paella right now. And, of course, the Legendary Mussel Laksa and a perfect Bertha-roasted whole fresh fish.
What’s one of the wildest things you’ve seen behind the scenes?
Shontelle dancing on the bar at her birthday.
The perfect day off would be…
A day out sailing across the Malacca straits towards Indonesia with a cooler of Guinness, Chablis, a hogshead of Gallagher specials and good company.
A day in the life of a restaurateur is…
6:30am up for breakfast with family before they leave at 7. That’s followed by a swim if time and work allows, before heading to Southern Rock Seafood HQ for a 9 am start.
The day continues with office meetings, accounts, marketing, inventory, lunch with a supplier (oysters and Guinness!), visits to SHUCKED outlets for more meetings with staff and dinner at home. The best days are when I get to sneak out for G&T at Coley.
What do you do for fun?
Swimming, sailing with my boys and Izzy, run a little in the Park with DnS on Saturday mornings, visit KL’s new bars, race the Pyongyang Marathon, go to meet our suppliers’ fishermen and oystermen, drinking water from the stream that feeds the oysters with Jimmy Gallagher.
What’s something you’d like guests to know about Southern Rock Seafood?
The Gallagher family from Donegal grow the finest oysters in the world and send them directly to us every week. Our wild-caught fish comes fresh from the cold South Atlantic waters off the coast of New Zealand. You should come and share the love of the best seafood with us. Oh and Cloudy Bay clams… again are wild caught from the top of the south island of New Zealand just five miles from the famous vineyard of the same name.
What’s your favourite (s) food and wine pairing?
Guinness and oysters. Cloudy Bay clams and Cloudy Bay wine. Herring matjes and onions.
What’s your view on the food and beverage scene in KL?
It’s going crazy right now – especially the bar scene. I love that KL has its own identity with the likes of Coley, Omakase, PS150, Chocha – all excellent.
What’s in store for you in the upcoming months?
We have a German Delights dinner on the 17th March and a St Patricks Supper on the 22nd March. And, you’d be silly to miss The SHUCKED Oyster Festival on the 6th May and Final on Sunday the 2nd of September.