Zinc Port Douglas
How many years have you been in business?
‘My Wife Dani & I took over ownership in March 2018, but Zinc has been in Port Douglas for many years prior. We have been involved in the hospitality trade for many years now, and we were excited to take over the reins at Zinc as it has some significant memories for us.’
What was your reason for moving to Port Douglas:
‘In April of 2005 I had finished managing a cocktail bar in Queenstown New Zealand. A close friend contacted me and said he had a spare room in Port Douglas where the weather was awesome, and the beaches full of opportunity! (insert wink face). So, with that in mind I landed in Port, I walked along four-mile beach and straight into a job as a bartender at Zinc. For the first three years I would spend the summers in New Zealand operating a white-water river boarding business, and then and return to Port Douglas for the high season during winter. In 2008 I was offered the opportunity to open a new venue in Port called Finz, which I managed until 2014. Between then and taking ownership of Zinc in 2018 I worked at Silky Oaks Lodge, 2Fish & QT. In 2016/17 I was lucky enough to be part of the team that took 2 fish to two state awards and a National award for Best Seafood Restaurant.
Chris’ first job was in the world of hospitality and he has experienced every aspect from washing dishes to tending bar, cooking and front of house management. Coupled with a background in Tourism makes Chris a well rounded and intuitive host which he feels allows him to understand his clientele and their needs.
What makes your business special / stand out?
‘We pride ourselves on the consistency of our food. We have a contemporary Australian menu, with a seaside, romantic vibe, attentive service and a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. Diners are encased in a lush Tropical garden with a welcomed sea breeze and within walking distance of Four Mile Beach. We cater for a variety of clientele, enjoy a special occasion with a romantic & intimate setting or dine alfresco amongst the palm trees, you can leave the collar and tie at home! Parents wanting a nutritious and delicious meal for the little ones will find plenty to choose from on our healthy Kids Menu.’
Zinc has an amazing array of wines to choose from, with over 120 labels on their wine list. The wait staff have excellent knowledge of what wine to pair with your meal so the whole experience becomes a marvellous adventure!
What’s your favourite thing about living / working in Port Douglas?
‘I love the casual atmosphere of Port Douglas and not having to battle through traffic to get to and from work. It’s always warm and the people are happy! I love being able to share our part of the
World with people who are visiting for the first time. Being able to enhance their visit to Port Douglas with a meal at our restaurant gives me great pleasure.’
Chris enjoys spending time with his young family and wife when he is not at work and says being able to manage a work/life balance is very important to him.
What would you like to see more / less of or improvements to Port Douglas in general?
‘More positivity regarding low season and less media hype about the alleged bad weather! Investment is key to our future in Port, if someone is willing to spend and increase the hype around such a beautiful part of the world, let’s get behind it and encourage more visitors to our little piece of paradise. You only have to read the history of the Christopher Skase era to see how Port Douglas boomed with a massive injection of money into our region!’
Chris also feels more optimism and the towns’ business owners working together across all sectors could greatly improve the turnover during the low season and would love to participate in a brainstorming session and kick some ideas around with like minded folk. The issue of ‘pricing’ in Port Douglas is also a frustration to Chris. All too often we hear complaints from visitors that it’s so expensive! Chris says, ‘Unfortunately we are a small town with an even smaller window of opportunity from which to earn our annual income and can’t be compared to the likes of Melbourne who have an enormous market share and a whole year in which to make money’.
In one sentence how would you summarise your business and what you offer to your customers?
Zinc is a romantic restaurant featuring contemporary Australian cuisine with classic European flare set in a tropical location with welcoming open areas, and a refreshing sea breeze.
To find out more, head to the website www.zincportdouglas.com or call 4099 6260 to book today!