16 May 2024

Botswana Butchery gets the chop

| Lucy Ridge
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Line of cleavers on a black wall.

The opulent fit-out of Botswana Butchery may have contributed to its downfall. Photo: Botswana Butchery.

Botswana Butchery has officially grilled its last steak, and closed its doors.

Within months of opening, the hospitality group behind the high-end steak house has gone into administration, and confirmed that it would cease trading at all of its venues in Australia.

This includes the Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne Botswana Butchery restaurants, as well as White & Wong’s in Sydney and Chadstone and Wong Baby Chapel.

“It is with deep regret that we have made the unfortunate but necessary decision to close our Australian businesses in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra respectively,” the Good Group stated on its website.

“While we are disappointed with this outcome, unfortunately we had exhausted every option.”

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Andrew Sallway and Duncan Clubb of BDO Australia were appointed voluntary administrators of Good Group Australia and its subsidiaries on 31 March and Botswana Butchery had continued to trade up until 14 May. The group’s 10 venues in New Zealand continue to operate.

Flaming steak on grill

The premium grilled meats on the menu could set you back hundreds of dollars. Photo: Botswana Butchery Canberra.

The Canberra opening was highly anticipated, with VIP guests like Chief Minister Andrew Barr attending the launch event. The fine dining steakhouse boasted premium menu items such as the 1.6 kg Tomahawk steak for two priced at $340.

A post on Instagram said the decision to close had been made “due to adverse trading conditions”.

Perhaps this indicates that customers were no longer willing to drop hundreds of dollars on steak in the current cost of living crisis. Or maybe the group found the Australian market more competitive than New Zealand. Whatever the reason, it’s a highly visible closure in an already struggling industry. For Canberrans, the short-lived Botswana Butchery will be quickly forgotten (unless it becomes the Mal Meninga of restaurant openings).

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Any guests with bookings after 14 May will need to contact operations@goodgroup.co.nz for refunds. Pre-paid gift cards can also be refunded, or transferred for use at Good Group’s New Zealand venues.

The group stated: “We would like to sincerely thank all our valued customers who have enjoyed our venues in Australia and supported us since we opened our first venue in Sydney in December 2021. Additionally we would like to thank our hardworking loyal staff who gave it their all”.

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Crazed_Loner6:28 pm 16 May 24

I thought the prices were over the top and didn’t offer decent value, and not just for the steak. I like a good steak but I don’t often have one when I go out. Wrong time, wrong market.

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