..strange name for a little touch of Italy in bayside Hampton. And more curiously, this new eatery has been set up by Alastair Dobbs, previously the sommelier at the Church St Enoteca.
OS presents a classic simple Italian menu accompanied of course with an excellent wine list. Bookings are advised as OS has become very popular
Garden Tuscany is a cafe in Moonee Ponds situated down a quiet laneway and it's beautifully designed. Lance's coffees and hot chocolates are some of the best in the area! Highly recommended to those visiting Melbourne.
Middle eastern restaurant in the basement of one of the coolest apartments in Melbourne. Local foodie, George Colombaris is part owner of this very swanky bar/restaurant which does terrific middle eastern fare with slick modern twists. Style and substance - quite a coup.
Wonderful European-style bistro in the inner city area of Carlton North. A cosy spot to sip coffee and savour ricotta hotcakes for brunch, or devour a grilled eye fillet and a bottle of red for dinner.
555 Nicholson Street,
Carlton North, 3054
+61 3 9381 4443
The Toff in Town is a fabulous venue hosting a variety of events and performances from jazz, cabaret and burlesque nights.
There’s an old fashioned glamour to the place, evoking Paris of the 1920s, in particular the partitioned section of the venue which has private booths, a bit like an old fashioned railway carriage.
Superb wine and nibbles, ideal for a midnight encounter.
Second Floor, Curtin House
252 Swanston Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
+ 61 3 9639 8770
South Yarra’s newest laneway destination Outpost, is part of the cult specialty coffee group St Ali. Fantastic coffee, gourmet sandwiches and meals and yummy cakes. All of their food is sourced from local Victorian suppliers.
9 Yarra St, South Yarra
+61 3 9827 8588
Nearest station: South Yarra
Attica is superb, unbelievable, different, wonderful and challenging.
In a quiet suburb, south east of the city (better known for its majestic National Trust mansion), Attica is breaking the ground rules for dining in Melbourne and gaining a very good reputation and two or three hats in local dining guides.
Attica presents food that is challenging - their after mains course called 'Terroir' consists of beetroot, limes, berries and flowers and is a prelude to various desserts, one of which blows you away - a tumbler of sauternes custard berries and toffee.
The service is exemplary and professional beyond belief. Attica hands the diner a wine list of great length with a selection of wines, local and international.
The degustation menu (on Friday and Saturday evenings) presents diners with two entrees and seven mains and a dessert dish, presented and explained over three hours of dining.
An astonishing dining experience
not cheap but absolutely worth it
One of Australia's best rural restaurants is Athelstane House in the historic maritime village of Queenscliff. The dining experience we had was superb, with amazing food backed up by a very good list of local and regional wines (as well as imports from France etc) and very very good service. Dining can be done in the restaurant or on the balcony or in front of the fire. Athelstane House also provides high class accommodation as well as a very good food store. Athelstane House is the winner of many dining and good food awards. We were impressed.
For a truly fantastic French Bistro experience in Melbourne you could not do better than "France-Soir" on Toorak Road. It has great atmosphere, divine food and a very comprehensive wine list. I ate there two of the three nights I were in Melbourne. The third one was a Saturday so I couldn't get a booking and had to have dinner elsewhere. Highly recommended!
Superbly located on the riverfront walk outside the Crown Casino and accessed via the Crown Promenade inside Melbourne's world class casino, the Waterfront does not disappoint.
With a name like - Waterfront Fish Market, the emphasis is obviously on seafood and to that end, Waterfront provides an elegant dining experience as the seafood is sublime.
For those who prefer something different, a variety of steaks done by weight is offered; anything up to 900gms of ribeye is for the carnivores in us.
Side dishes of salads are for the vegetarians or the hungry and to finish, a nice choice of desserts is available including their famous Belgian Chocolate Fondant! Yum!
A very good beverage menu also provides diners with an excellent choice of Australian and mainly French wines (red, white and sparkling).
Waterfront should be visited and enjoyed. Not cheap but well worth it.
Riverside (Shop 19)
Crown Casino Complex
8 Whiteman Street
Southbank, Victoria 3006
ph 9686 9766
Melbourne has retained a lot of its history, and no better way of seeing that is to stroll along the many arcades (almost all have now been restored) in the centre of the city and also take off down the small laneways and alleys branching off the main city streets and arcades.
The city's network of arcades is Australia's most extensive, with Block Arcade between Collins and Elizabeth streets, built in 1891, its crowning glory. Royal Arcade (between Bourke Street Mall and Little Collins Street), is Melbourne's oldest, built in 1869, and features Gaunt's clock and the two folklore giants of the ancient Britons, Gog and Magog, who strike the hour.
The various lanes and alleys in the city centre all hold their own interest and most have a specific history. The group of back alleys famous (or infamous) for having all Melbourne's brothels in the 1880s or the lanes either side of the Chinatown strip are a rich source of authentic Asian eateries. Hardware Lane, one of the first laneways to be restored in the 1980s, now has a fine collection of outdoor cafes and bars. The local interest in these lanes and alleys has recently seen one named in honour of one of our best known rock bands... AC/DC
Melbourne city centre
go to Flinders Street station and start from there or use the City Circle tram to get around
Melbourne is getting a collection of great little restaurants along its bay and Vincents is another one. It has fantastic views across Port Phillip Bay and the surrounding bayside suburbs from the upstairs dining room.
The menu is mediterranean based and of course offers lots of fish choices.
The pastas were great as were the home made dips. Service was smart and efficient. BYO and also licenced, Vincents is just a nice place to go and have a meal
Another outstanding find in one of our inner city suburbs is Olives. Situated in the busy strip of Martin St (highway end) Olives was a great place for us to have a family dinner for Mothers Day last Sunday.
Olives' menu gave us a large number of choices for dinner, with most of the menu seafood/mediterranean based. Us meat eaters (and vegetarians) are also well catered for with special menu offerings.
A reasonably priced wine and drinks list is also offered for diners. Service was efficient and friendly with wait staff able to offer menu recommendations when asked. All in all, a nice evening out was had by all.
A small town nestled at the base of the Strezlecki ranges , Yarragon has a range of speciality shops covering arts and antiques, bookshops and places to taste the local cheeses and wares. We stayed at the Yarragon motel, a small neat and tidy place just off the main highway (it was cheap accommodation too.)
about 130km SE of Melbourne on the Princes Hwy
Google map: tinyurl.com/pf36vv
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.
Highett is a pretty plain Melbourne suburb and wasn't renowned for dining or eateries until The French corner arrived. The French Corner is a bistro, bar and restaurant. If you want a quick bite, try the Les Petits Plâts or for something more substantial the Les Plâts de Resistance which are substantial meals.
There are some interesting choices on the menu. The service is good and the drinks prices are not too silly either. Many wines (local and French) are available by the glass. I liked the place.
Jimmy Watson's is named after an icon of the Australian wine industry and is a wine bar, bistro and restaurant. Located in the Lygon St food and dining area of the inner city suburb of Carlton, it has been a meeting place for Melburnians to chat, imbibe and graze for more than 75 years (it was opened in the 1930s by Jimmy Watson himself).
As it's also located close to Melbourne University, countless generations of students have met there over the years to discuss politics and economics. Run today by Watson's grandsons, the original aura and atmosphere of Watson's has been retained.
It must also be said, that in addition to this eating place, Jimmy Watson is remembered by the memorial trophy under his name offered each year at the Royal Melbourne Wine show.
Watsons is a Melbourne institution.
This is one of the better old style pubs in inner Melbourne. Many types of beer and good grub.
Its specialities are the chicken parma and a good serve of fish and chips. Some decent pizzas as well as a kids menu. The rooftop bar and beer garden is the place to be on a warm night.
The Corner Hotel is also well known for its entertainment and is open until late...
Melbourne is undoubtedly the foodie capital of Australia and the choice of restaurants is overwhelming. Should you find yourself out of the CBD's foodie haven and in the suburb of Camberwell, seek out the Afghan kitchen. I started with a platter of starters to share, which consisted of north-west frontier lamb dumplings, roasted aubergine and flat bread. For mains I had the bamia - okra cooked the Middle Eastern way in a tangy, tomato sauce and to finish off, a trio of mini desserts consisting of barfi (pistachio cake), firni (rosewater and cardamom custard) and Baklava. Pleasant ambience, a culinary experience that's a bit different and friendly service make this place a winner. And the icing on the cake - averagely priced!
923 Burke Road, Camberwell 3124, Melbourne
Phone (03) 9882 2775
The easiest way from the CBD is to take the train from Flinders Street and get off at Camberwell station, which is on Burke Road and minutes away from the Afghan kitchen. There also is a tram route that services Camberwell.
Google map: tinyurl.com/qv8mbd
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