We’ve now been to Melbourne together several times and food is such a highlight one blog post couldn’t cover it. We split this into brunch and everything else. This is the everything else post. But for Melbournian’s favorite meal of the day, check out our list of can’t miss brunch spots.
There are a few spots that are so well known to any local, which of course Justin took me. too. We went out with friends to Mamasita in the CBD for some great Mexican food and Jimmy Grants for amazing, cheap Greek food. Side note: there are multiple Jimmy Grants locations — lucky you. You MUST try The Bonegilla (chicken + lamb with mustard aioli) and The Patrise (prawns with honey mayo). OMG.).
Typo 00. Boy did we feel cool going there. It is a hot Italian restaurant in the CBD which was new when we first went a few years ago. Getting resos was hard and we were lucky to get a 2pm lunch reso on a Friday afternoon. Of course, why bother with only a few dishes when you can do the chef’s tasting menu, so we did! Homemade ricotta and herb focaccia, fresh burrata and fried eggplant, grilled octopus and leeks, homemade pastas (multiple courses!) and of course…the best dessert of the trip! Complete with some afternoon Prosecco made this lunch perfection.
And, since those 7 courses weren’t enough, we went to another pre fixe dinner later that night with our friends Kate and Anthony. It was one of Justin’s favorites called Maha, a Mediterranean restaurant in the CBD a few blocks from Flinders Street Station. Once again the courses started flowing and were in absolute heaven!
Our favorite dim sum in Melbourne
From the fancy and pricey to the casual and cheap — the best Michelin star dim sum around. We first ate at Tim Ho Wan while on a layover in Hong Kong and couldn’t wait to go back to their Melbourne location in the heart of the CBD.
We ordered SO much food, and then some more. It was delicious. Our hands down favorite dish was the pork buns — sweet cookie-like dough that is crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, filled with steaming, sweet chopped pork. I don’t usually eat pork but made an exception for these. The debate is at which stage of the meal to order them. We usually do middle and then again at the end — once was not enough.
It was so good, we had to make it one of our last stops before leaving Melbourne and did a full encore for dinner!
Cocktails galore — the amazing Melbourne bar scene
We had some pretty fantastic cocktails at bars throughout the city. There is nothing like the post-work drink by the Yarra River at Riverland or Arbory (two favorites) but even better is not working, and having a drink at one of these hot spots!
We also hit up Storyville, a storybook inspired bar with cocktails to match the theme (I thought that drinking my potion might cause me to shrink or blow up — straight out of a Lewis Carroll book).
And one of my favorite spots was called Chuckles Park, just an alleyway, decorated and totally awesome with a cart in the back serving drinks and snacks.
Neil Perry dinners in Melbourne
During one of our first visits, Justin wanted to give me the magical Melbourne experience so we ate at Neil Perry’s Rockpool and Spice Temple (#3 restaurant in Melbourne), both in Southbank along the river near Crown Casino. Those are super nice but not quite our favorites — and we haven’t been back. But if you’re into fancy meals from famous chefs, check it out.
If you go to Melbourne…
- Eat and drink everything
- Take part in the coffee culture — grab a seat and have a latte
- Remember you don’t have to tip — anything!
- Don’t worry about the calories…you’ll walk it all off exploring the CBD
Here’s a map of some of our fav spots: