Hidden rooftop garden & apiary
High above the hustle and bustle of the Club, gardeners, apiarists and their bees are busy in a natural haven filled with herbs and vegetables. The garden began as a small sustainability initiative and has transformed a bare concrete area into a fragrant, green space that provides fresh ingredients for our restaurants and plays an important part in the Club’s waste management strategy. The sleek lines of our mechanical services provide a contrasting backdrop for our many tousled plants.
Bees were the genesis of the Secret Garden. With five hives and over 330,000 bees, Fairfield RSL’s rooftop apiary is thriving. Our last harvest brought in 30 litres of honey, and we can expect even more bountiful harvests in the future. Whether wild or domesticated, bees play a vital part in maintaining life on earth, as they pollinate a huge majority of the world’s plant species, allowing these plants to reproduce. More than one third of everything we eat, from apples to meat and dairy, would be lost if bees weren’t around to pollinate the crops and grasses that feed us and our livestock.
The Secret Garden is styled with a selection of art pieces from Garden Life. Feature pieces include a traditional wooden plough with carved grooves that hold sharpened flints. A traditional healing statue and a carved stone sculpture that evokes the giant Easter Island monoliths.
PLANTER TO TABLE
We propagate and nurture a host of herbs in our prolific herb garden. Sage, thyme, basil, rosemary and coriander are just some of the ultra fresh herbs that find their way into our kitchens. The Vietnamese basil and chillies are essential for our pho and we need a variety of herbs on hand for signature dishes in our other restaurants, e.g. osso bucco, coq au vin and laksa. And then there are all the sauces and accompaniments like salsa verde, thyme sauce and lemon butter. All of our chefs are involved in the garden’s upkeep. It’s also a natural laboratory where they can experiment with the different tastes and flavours that spring from the garden beds. Growing our own ingredients also means we can ensure quality and freshness in the dishes we serve up.