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July 5, 2023

La Louisiane pops up downstairs on King William

Alexis Besseau, the former head chef of Restaurant Hubert in Sydney, brings his French food to a basement bar on King William Street, but for a limited time only.

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  • Words: Maeve Marryat
  • Photos: Duy Dash

What was once Jack Ruby and sports bar Wing It has been transformed into a unique French restaurant and bar.

For a limited time, the underground space at 89 King William Street will be La Louisiane and offer a combination of French cuisine, live music and a carefully curated wine and cocktail list.


La Louisiane
89 King William Street

Wednesday: 5pm-12am
Thursday: 12-3pm, 5pm-12am
Friday: 12-3pm, 5pm-2am
Saturday: 5pm-2am

La Louisiane

The Big Easy Group (Anchovy Bandit, NOLA, House of George) and the Gonzo Group (Cry Baby, Memphis Slims, Shotgun Willies) have joined forces to bring this pop-up venue to the city, which opened on the weekend and will run Wednesday to Saturday until December.

The hospo-heavy-weights have employed Alexis Besseau to bring their vision to life after he connected with the Big Easy Group last year as part of a collaboration dinner at House of George.

“I spoke with guests and most of them were saying there are not many French restaurant options in Adelaide,” Alexis says.

He remained in contact with Big Easy Group co-founder Oliver Brown, one of CityMag’s 40 Under 40 alumni, and the concept of opening up a French restaurant in Adelaide came to life.

“La Louisiane is a passion project between like-minded hospo loving folk,” Oliver says.

“The goal of this venue activation is to create something uniquely different for South Australia, something completely immersive.”

Alexis says he is excited about creating a new experience for Adelaide

“I came here to work for the Big Easy Group and start building something that is different for Adelaide,” he says.

“I didn’t know anything about Adelaide, but what’s important is creating something different and bringing something new to the guest.

“We have to have the passion behind it, if everyone puts in the right energy and listens to each other, this is what we can do for a pop up and I think people will be surprised by what we’ve done.”

Walking down the steps from King William, guests are transported into a 1930’s French jazz club serving up French staples such as beef tartare, pâté en croûte, escargot, steak frites and creme brûlee.

“The menu is based on classic French brasserie dishes and using South Australian produce because I came here to work closely with the local producers,” Alexis says.

“My idea is to discover what is available locally and bring it to the table and that’s a mix between South Australian produce and some imported produce from France.”

Memphis Slim’s and Shotgun Willie’s co-owner, Michael Keogh, has curated a drinks list that features six signature drinks named after classic French cult films, as well as classic cocktails.

“The cocktail menu is very impressive, very unique and different as well, they actually match the food very well,” Alexis says.

The wine list is also on theme.

“We’ve put as much love and romance into the wine list as we have the entire La Louisiane experience,” says Jack Booker, Big Easy Operations Manager.

There will be live music on weekends, with food available until late to sustain a crowd.

“For us, we want to welcome guests for as long as possible, we want to encourage that,” Alexis says.

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