Victoria has had a tough run over the past 18 months, but as Melburnians emerge from their fifth lockdown, the city’s top notch bars and eateries are ready to welcome them with open arms.
Let the post-lockdown feasting begin! These Melbourne restaurants will remind you why this city is lauded as one of the top foodie destinations in the country.
If ever there was a place to dine like a king, Old Beijing is the place to do it. The menu offers up the tantalising ancient flavours of imperial China as well as a few wallet-friendly favourites. Splash out with a generous serving of Fois Gras in Moutai Brine, or try the Duck Tongue in Balloon Flower. For something a little more low-key, opt for the fried noodles and their signature Xiaolongbao. When you need to wash it all down, try the Szechuan Sour – a tongue-tingling concoction of Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz, Szechuan spiced red wine and lemon.
Easily one of the cutest and most photographable eateries in the city (and probably the entire country), Pretzel Knox is the most recent addition to the now 9-strong Pretzel franchise. Just stepping inside the pretty-in-pink store will lift your mood and your first bite into a delicious pretzel will have you floating on a fluffy cloud for the rest of the day. With plenty of vegan and vegetarian options to choose from, the cabinet is packed with funky flavours including peanut butter Oreo, cheese and pepperoni, and salted caramel. Find the full list of locations here, or make your own tasty treats at home with this DIY Pretzel Kit!
Chef David Kew
There is a lot to love about this premium hot pot restaurant just 5km outside the CBD in the inner city suburb of Kew. First of all, those who arrive with a serious appetite will be rewarded with an endless supply of hot pot goodness. It’s an all-you-can-eat affair where diners are perched up at the bar with their own hot pot, ready to snap up the tasty ingredients that travel along the train. Secondly, the restaurant itself could pass as a modern art museum with an eclectic display of neon lights, sculptures, unique fixtures and incredible serving ware. And for those not quite ready to venture out just yet, you can enjoy your own hot pot experience at home. Delivery is free within 20kms!
Another young gun on the Melbourne food and drink scene is 21-year-old entrepreneur Nicole Culham, who has turned her taste for bubble tea into a rapidly expanding franchise. Naröcha combines the ancient art of Japanese tea with the popular bubble tea phenomenon. Flavours range from Oreo Milk Tea with Matcha pudding and Butterfly Lemonade tea with Basil Seeds, to the more traditional styles of Hojicha and Matcha macchiato. You can also stock up on your favourite flavours and invest in the tools to make your own bubble tea at home.
Due to open this August, the latest addition to the stylish Docklands area showcases an incredible rooftop bar offering 180-degree views of Port Phillip Bay. Melbourne Marriott Hotel Docklands is gearing up to welcome its first guests in the coming weeks and we’re anticipating social media to be absolutely flooded with jaw-dropping shots of Sunset House and the adjacent infinity pool. Guests will want to arrive early to secure a spot on one of the chic lounges for sunset. Work your way through the impressive cocktail list while the sun dips below the horizon and the lights of the city shine brightly in the distance.
Keep an eye out in the coming months for Melbourne’s new restaurant openings. The European 1854 is set to open in late August, boasting five unique European dining venues under one roof, and Tiktok fans will be gearing up for the opening of Eggholic Glen Waverly where they can taste the viral scrambled egg Korean street food.