Melbourne Food Experiences

There’s something about Melbourne. Not just Melbourne, the food, the coffee, ok yes theres the weather and diversity of the area, but everyone who visits Melbourne will tell you about the food.

From coffee vans to quirky cafes through to high end restaurants, Melbourne presents an incredible array of food choices, from many cultures.We enjoyed a number of meals whilst visiting. The first breakfast, including the silverside Brekky option above, was enjoyed at an interesting quirky suburban cafe Mr. Foxx. Friendly staff, great food and decor with a difference. Something to see in every direction.Ok it was winter and pretty chilly outside, but once inside the cafe you were enveloped with warmth, homeliness and customer chatter, all rising above the sounds of the coffee machine and kitchen preparations.Hubby approved of the chai latte it was apparently superb. As a non coffee, non chai drinker, I can only comment to say that a number of people I know who do drink coffee, would move to Melbourne just for the coffee. Apparently its that good.

On another day, we were visiting the Terracotta Warriors at the NGV, which had us finishing just before lunch. A little bit of museum exploring and the onsite Garden Restaurant was discovered. No need to brave the cold, lets give this one a a try.Seated next to expansive windows, overlooking a lawn area, complete with artworks, as well as pond with a somewhat interesting fountain sculpture in the middle. Ill let you visit and work that one out!White table cloths, highly attentive staff, matched to an extensive wine & food menu, making for plenty of choice for all. Add to that the garden fresh herbs and vegetables you can see outside the restaurant, and you know this will be a lovely dining experience.Food arrived in a timely manner, simple tidy presentation. Upon tasting, wow, totally delicious, melt in your mouth food.

I was also lucky to enjoy another breakfast, at a suburban cafe, One Little Place. Highly recommended by some lovely ladies in the Norsu Interiors shop, which just happened to be next door. Check this place out too, its unique collection of home interior design items and ideas will give you plenty of inspiration, and enough shopping to fill up your vehicle each trip!The dish I chose at One Little Place, was the one recommended, Avocado Crush. A deconstructed version of avocado smash which was not only intriguing, but what a superb idea for breakfast! Totally different to the usual presentation on this dish, here you were able to mix and match yourself. Absolutely loved it.The warmth and character of this little cafe made for a very enjoyable breakfast for one. Add to that a quick chat to the friendly staff when paying the bill and it was certainly well worth stopping by.

Our final stop on the last day, as we headed out to Melbourne Airport, was at the Boathouse, which was an easy stop on our way to the airport.This restaurant is right on the river, with a huge outside deck. Some braved the chilly conditions to sit out there, and all honesty, on a warmer day, that would have been an awesome place to sit for a while. On this particular weekday however, the warmth of the inside fire was definitely much more appealing!

Today I opted for the Express 2 course lunch, which just happened to accompanied by a glass of wine, winning! The lightly batter fried calamari was soft, easy to eat and quite tasty. Follow this up with the creamy carbonara and you have delightful lunch, not to heavy, not to light. Especially after you have shared the calamari!Hubby was a little more hungry, his choice being a substantial burger and chips, which I’m told was delicious. High praise.Theres a lot happening at this venue, as we could see looking around. Those cocktails we saw on the blackboard, sound like the ideal accompaniment to a table on the balcony, overlooking the river. Perfect place for summer!We only touched on a few of the many venues in Melbourne. But as well as dining out, we enjoyed the delectable delights delivered to your door. So many choices, so much food. When you order restaurant quality food to your door, well sometimes its just easier. Bellissimo😘

The Smith, Prahran, Melbourne

Dining out in Melbourne is a totally different world. Often you need to decide well in advance where you are going, to ensure you successfully secure a booking. Our forward planning hosts, had secured a dinner booking at The Smith.

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Late dining is the norm here. Where a lot of Brisbanes restaurants would be taking final orders at 9pm, in Melbourne they have only just warmed up for the night ahead.

Entry through the door is divided, right for bar, left for the restaurant. Caught in the steady flow of people, you are washed through the door, into your designated area.

Once inside, one could see the venue was packed. The huge open bar sits in the middle of the room dividing the restaurant from the bar. As the table wasn’t quite ready for our 8.30pm sitting, we were directed to the bar for drinks. Negotiating through the standing room only crowd, we were able to order our desired drinks. Surprisingly, especially given the noise with the DJ in the corner and the excited wave of voices, our order was filled promptly.

A short time later, we were seated at our table, with an extensive menu to choose from. Once seated, there was a noticeable drop in the noise level.
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Seated amongst the hustle and bustle, dividing time between perusing the menu and admiring the exposed brick, big rafters, industrial feel building, eventual choices were decided.

We all chose our individual mains, leaving our hosts, who were Smith savvy customers, to choose the entrees. Kingfish Sashimi arrived first.

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This dish was devine. A soft combination of the Kingfish, lightly flavoured with mango purée, coconut milk and green chilli dressing, created a flavour explosion in the mouth. The chilli was not overpowering though, by any stretch of the imagination.

Soft Fajitas followed, served with with a Cuban braised wagyu beef alongside an avocado and sweetcorn salsa. Another well presented, tasty dish.

Staff were fantastic when we checked if the dish had tomato, due to an allergy. They quickly checked with the kitchen and tried to seek an alternative to the Cuban beef. Unable to, they were most apologetic. To be honest, the salsa on its own, still made for a tasty entree.

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My choice for the main, was the Salmon. Crispy skin, beautifully soft inside, the salmon combined fabulously with the crushed peas and pomegranate yoghurt. One of the best salmon dishes I have ever tasted.

All the mains were declared fabulous, and we were told, our hosts had never had a bad meal there yet. A high accolade.

Time to finish with their signature dessert, The Smith Knickerbocker dessert.
Layered with berries and cream, a delightful way to finish the meal. A most enjoyable evening all round.

IMG_2385.JPGif you can secure a booking at The Smith, give it a try sometime. I’m told lunchtimes through the week are usually quiet. Plus you never know who you may see here. Keep an eye out!

Blues Bar & Grill, Carlton, Melbourne

Melbourne. A couple of hours flight from Brisbane, yet a world away in so many other ways. Our late night flight had us arrive at the Rydges in Carlton around midnight. Breakfast in the morning was a buffet in the Blues Restaurant. This was our first introduction to this comfortable, hospitable area.

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A view to match a deliciously fresh, varietal and fulfilling breakfast. Seated next to the window, within the warm enclosure of the restaurant, we had a birds eye view of people rushing about their daily business. Judging by the additional clothing most were wearing, we gauged it to be a lot less warm out there than it was inside.

The hearty breakfast was the ideal start before embarking on a morning exploration of Melbourne. Trams run past the outside of the hotel, however with a specific destination in mind, we utilised the cab rank right next to the door instead. First stop, the vinyl record shops hubby was seeking. An easy find, the cab driver dropped us at the door of the first one. This was when we discovered some of these boutique shops don’t open until 10:00am. Oh well, with interesting buildings and streets to explore, we found an open vinyl shop for hubby whilst I watched Melbournites go about their day, snapping a few shots here and there. Graffiti, art, fashion & food. All in Melbourne are an artform. A unique, interesting city, with something to see at every turn.

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After a long trips back to the hotel, yes we did get lost, it was close to our 1pm check out time, after which we were heading out to the suburbs.

Exhausted, we checked out and leaving our bags at reception, ducked back into Blues Bar for a quick lunch before we left. Seated at the bar this time, the friendly, helpful Con was our barman, who quite happily started us with a cocktail, of his choice (as we asked). Both cocktails were superb. Time to order some lunch.

We opted for the the 5 choices of dishes for $42. Kilpatrick & natural oysters included. The food was superb, fresh, crisp or soft where it was meant to be. Very palatable.

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We had to eventually cut our ties with the hospitable Con and head off to the suburbs to stay with family.

If you live in Melboune, or are just passing through, stop off at the Blues bar and say hi to Con. Hopefully we can revisit this one on another trip to Melbourne.

Keep an eye out over the next few days, more Melboune reviews to come. Don’t forget to follow us in Instagram & Facebook – Dine Live Travel.

You never know where we will be next. 👍

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