At EXP. our aim is to create a dining EXP.erience that is lively, interactive and fun, it should capture all of the senses and leave a lasting memory for each guest.
We EXPose and EXPlore the local community for the best the Hunter region has to offer. We want to give credit to our local partners for the collaborations we share.
Food is at the heart of EXP. and the menu is driven by the seasons. The team sources local produce where possible, with quality always being the key. With these ingredients the kitchen EXP.eriment to highlight qualities. Dishes are created that EXP.ress our love of food and are down right delicious.
The restaurant is located in Pokolbin, the heart of the Hunter Valley. The dining room is chic and intimate with hand crafted local furniture. Guests can sit along the bar and peer directly into the kitchen while interacting with Chef Frank Fawkner and his team. The restaurant garden sits just beyond the confines of the dining room.
EXP. restaurant is infused in Oakvale Winery, a family owned and operated business that is passionate about all facets of winemaking. They strive to produce minimalist handcrafted wines that are unique, distinct and a true reflection of the Hunter Valley region.
frank fawkner - owner - head chef
Frank began his cooking career at the age of 15 at Mount Broke Wines, a simple cafe in Broke.
He was then a part of the opening team at Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley where he worked for 3 years to complete his apprenticeship. With hunger for knowledge and EXP.erience he then moved to London to work for Tom Aikens, climbing to the rank of Sous Chef at "Tom's Kitchen".
Upon returning home to the Hunter, Frank landed a position at renowned Muse Restaurant where he worked alongside owners Troy and Megan Rhoades-Brown, chef and restaurant manager. This was a great platform to develop his career; learning how to run a fine dining restaurant and create his own style of food. Great achievements for Frank was becoming Head Chef in late 2013 and being part of the team when Muse Restaurant reached the coveted "2 Hats" from the SMH Good Food Guide.
2015 marked the beginning of a new EXP.edition for Frank and the team; the opening of EXP. restaurant.