No, it doesn’t mean that eating here will be a case of daylight robbery in action! One of the most popular restaurants in Launceston actually gets its name from the fascinating history of the site on which it stands.
The restaurant sits inside the City Park Grand Hotel, which is built on land once owned by a ship owner and builder called Jonathan Griffiths. And it was Griffiths who was originally deported from England to the colonies at the age of 15 in 1888 after being convicted of grand larceny – for the theft of a trunk from a wagon.
After completing his seven-year sentence, he became a successful boat builder, relocating to Launceston in 1822 and cementing his legacy with an extensive building program and business empire. Since that time the hotel has seen many changes, including its most recent major renovation in 2007.
Today, the Larceny is considered one of the city’s premier restaurants, with a regularly updated menu that only ever uses the finest local produce. Scottish trained Alan Sheppard, who has been Larceny’s head chef for three years, explains what it is about the restaurant that makes people keep on coming back…
Where have you worked before?
Alan Sheppard: Many renowned restaurants in Scotland, such as Ubiquitous Chip and Stravaigin in Glasgow and the Old Course Hotel in St Andrews. While at the Old Course Hotel I won the Gold Award at the ‘La Parade Des Chefs’ for the chocolate fondant that is very closely adapted to my current chocolate pudding.
What changes have you seen during your time working at the restaurant?
We have been able to focus on local produce and international experience to create a menu that caters for both local Tasmanians and tourists.
What makes Larceny stand out?
Larceny is a warm and inviting restaurant that has an intimate feel. The menu offers simple to complex tastes and therefore caters to all needs and or wants. We are always changing aspects of the menu to refine the overall experience.
Is there a signature dish that is always on the menu or one that is your favourite to create?
The confit duck, lamb, and Morton bay bug risotto are some of my favourites. The ice-cream list is forever expanding, as I enjoy creating different and unexpected flavours. The Citrus sherbet and strawberry and Cointreau flavours are my current favourites.
City Park Grand, Clarion Hotel, 22 Tamar Street, Launceston
Tel: +613 6331 7633