Maris is a small restaurant in the inner south eastern suburb of Malvern that produces some amazing food with a mediterranean flavour and does so very well in a low key french bistro atmosphere. Run by a husband (chef) and wife team (front of house) team, Maris provides food that makes dining out a joy. Something is there for the carnivores (suckling pig or steak tartarè) or the vegetarians of this world (smoked beetroot for entreè!) Desserts are to kill for, with our choice being the pannacotta (can't recommend this dish highly enough). Home made sourdough is presented when you are seated and that is just the start of an enjoyable evening out. Service is slick and attentive. We thoroughly enjoyed our recent dining experience there.
15 Glenferrie Rd
Malvern 3144 VIC
Phone: 9500 0665
Maris is only a short walk from Malvern railway station
(parking is out the front)
Google map: tinyurl.com/pnhadn
Situated on the shoreline between the marina and the bay, Rìva really makes the most of its bayside location. There are views across the bay, the marina and the Melbourne skyline and the outside decks sare great. The menu and wine list are pretty good. Rìva was packed when we went and although it's a bit different, it's still a great place for a night out.
Another nice little find in my local neighbourhood... Sarands presents a Mediterranean-based menu of seafood or meat dishes. The restaurant itself is light and airy (with an upstairs private dining area for functions), service is pleasant, the wine list small but well chosen and the (mains) servings huge. The prices are reasonable too. Coffee is excellent.
532 Hampton St, Hampton
3188 Vic (200m south of South Rd)
Ph 9598 8944
Google map: tinyurl.com/rxul2v
Dining at Mirka is a tasty visual experience. Surrounded by murals by Mirka Mora, you dine on food from the kitchen of Melbourne's famed Guy Grossi. Based widely on a mediterranean style (Grossi is Italian), the menu here is about making one feel cosseted and at home.
The wine list is superb with wines from France and South America as well as the best of Australia. Superb service along the art of the dining room makes 'Mirka' one of Melbourne's best culinary experiences. We will be going back.
42 Fitzroy St
03 9525 3088
100m from St Kilda Light Rail station
Google map: tinyurl.com/pp2mqb
At the start of the famous Yarra Valley is the township of Yarra Glen and dominating the town is the famous old hotel... the Grand. Built in the late 1880s, the Grand is one of the most significant landmarks of the Yarra Valley.
Classified by the National Trust, and registered with Heritage Commission, the Grand has been restored to reflect the grace and elegance of the turn of the century while catering to the demands of the modern world with premium accommodation and fine dining. It includes a first class restaurant, Farrells, a cafe a bistro and a bar. It's an excellent place to start visting everything the Yarra Valley has to offer.
19 Bell Street Yarra Glenn, 3775 VIC, Australia
Telephone: 61 3 9730 1230
Facsimile: 61 3 9730 1124
Our local Italian... and we are proud of it. It is somewhere we can walk on a Saturday night... with a bottle of red and enjoy a meal. (It's fully licensed or you can bring your own). Families love it because kids are well catered for here.
It is noisy and buzzy but down the back away from the large Pizza oven it is quieter. The waiting staff are very much at home dealing with us locals (even their guest Canadian waiter is no longer homesick)... Great southern Italian cooking here !
Sometimes it pays to book beforehand...
462 Hampton St HAMPTON 3188
ph: 9598 9396
Dining in Grossi Florentino's Tuscan mural room shows that special-occasion dining in Melbourne is alive and well. The dining room has high, decorated plaster ceilings, chandeliers, dark wood panelling and the murals. Service is a delight from the black dressed waiters with their long white aprons.
Guy Grossi's menu whatever the season is magnificient... and in our case we walked away with a copy of the book on the restaurant... autographed by Guy Grossi himself.
All in all, a memorable dining experience.
And a final note - all this from an establishment that has been there since the early 1900s, which makes it even more amazing!
Address: 80 Bourke St, City 3000
Phone: 9662 1811
Vlados is simply Australia's best 'meat' dining experience and has been for the past 20+ years. Nowhere else in Australia is the emphasis on meat, meat and not much else. Starters are meat with a mixed grill entree followed by a main course of meat... the steak you choose yourself from the many on display. It's cooked the way you want it and comes with chips (if you want them).
Dessert? Strawberries and icecream or pancakes. The whole thing is aimed at getting the discerning diner simply the best meat meal.
61 Bridge rd
Melbourne sits on a great bay and having a meal as the sun descends in the west across the water is a great dining experience. There are many places especially on the eastern side, from the bistros, pubs and restaurants of the peninsula towns of Portsea and Sorrento or Mornington to the elegant dining of Donovans at St Kilda, Sails on the Bay at Elwood, the restored Brighton Baths or Windows by the Bay at Mordialloc.
Closer to town at Port Melbourne, the London or Graham are not to be missed. Eat out at the St Kilda Pier or sit in the Espy and have a beer. The view from Number 1 Fitzroy St is worth cost of the dining experience.
South-east of the CBD... along the shoreline of Port Philip Bay
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