At The Bar with Cargo Crew’s Felicity Rodgers

Felicity Rodgers started Cargo Crew more than 20 years ago, and runs the company with her sister Narelle Craig – the duo bringing chic to the hospitality industry and retail space – with uniforms that feel anything but. They’ve collaborated with celebrity chefs like Curtis Stone who helped design aprons for a capsule last season, while mixologists who pour award-winning cocktails at New York’s Dante Bar also adorn the Cargo Crew range when they’re shaking it up.

The Write Drop talks to founder Felicity Rodgers for our At the Bar series – she talks about her passion for dining out, wine that’s tickling her fancy right now and a Bellarine Peninsula winery we all need to visit.

MY CITY

Melbourne, where fashion, food and an extreme passion for sport collides! I’m a Northside girl and have always lived close to High St. I love having so many great bars and Preston market on my doorstep.

FAVOURITE FOOD MEMORY

It has to be La Voltaire in Paris. The warm decor and romantic presentation of the tables, staff and of course food, is so chic and really evokes classic French dining. I love the theatre of traditional hospitality and sitting there under the historic wood panelling with simple seasonal food, had so much charm and a character that is impossible to fake. I was here with my family and remember my daughter was studying the French Revolution at the time. She gave us a little history lesson as we dined across from the Seine in a building steeped in so much history!

FAVOURITE BAR

I’m loving the newly opened Pincho Disco which is the perfect blend of restaurant and bar. I’m all about lots of punchy snacks and good cocktails. You can’t go past their spicy margarita and a selection of pinchos and I love the BBQ king prawns.

DRINK THAT DESCRIBES YOU

Spicy margarita – zesty, sweet and not without a little kick.

BEST HANGOVER CURE

You can’t go past a Vietnamese vermicelli salad with spring rolls. A bit of freshness and a bit of fried to bring you back to life.

BEST INTERSTATE BAR

Mary Mary in Hobart. Moody, elegant and the perfect place to bunker down for a night out with friends on a weekend away.

FAVOURITE WINE

A bottle from Anders Frederik Steen. I love Andes’ refreshing and creative approach to wine. He also talks about it so beautifully. We had a bottle of his gewürztraminer.

FAVOURITE WINERY

Basils Farm on the Bellarine Peninsula. It’s super relaxed and welcoming, with high quality wines. Sitting out in the gardens overlooking the swan bay with friends is always dreamy.

NEXT DESTINATION

France for a special birthday celebration this year. I’m making this trip all about fashion and gathering new inspiration for my creativity from fashion icons. I’m going to do everything you’d expect, a Chanel tour to visit the haunts and restaurants Coco frequented, trips to the fabric areas, vintage stores and auction houses for some treasure hunting. It’s a birthday after all.

WHAT’S NEXT FOR CARGO CREW

Continuing to share the Cargo Crew product range and experience within Australia and beyond. We’re believers that when you look good, you feel good, and everything else around you shines. We want every crew to experience our fashion with function, no matter what you’re working on.

BARS THAT ROCK YOUR DESIGNS AROUND THE WORLD

Dante New York. Voted one of the Best Bar’s in the world and owned by Australians! Also more locally, Heart Attack & Vine – my fave spot for a post Cinema Nova debrief.

WHAT INSPIRES THE GARMENTS

Our design philosophy begins with functionality. We focus on what our garments are going to be used for and design our pieces so they are built for purpose. Beyond function, we work with fabrics and colour that deliver a modern aesthetic. Our customers then customise so they have a look that’s unique to their business. Our best-selling styles tend to be the most practical and we always focus on considered detailing to complete the look. Creating workwear that looks great, unites a crew and delivers comfort is what we do. A quality button-up shirt, paired with a classic Tom apron front of house or Banjo apron out the back, are timeless. Simplicity is always best.

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