We continue our regular monthly feature where we summarise some of our highlights from the previous month and offer recommendations for where you should visit or have on your radar for the month ahead. Encompassing new openings and old favourites, pop-up venues, events and everything in between, here is the inside track for those sharking for chips and drinks.
If we’ve missed any exciting new places off this list, please get in touch in the comments section. In case you missed it – check out what OPENED IN MAY.
When? June 9, 2014
What is it? An all day eatery serving breakfast and lunch, hoping to open up for nights in the next 2 weeks focusing on craft beers, local wines,cocktails and a small but morish menu and offering the area as unique space for the night owls.
Who’s behind it? Owner Vince Tesoriero and Kelly Attree (Ex Hobba). They joined forces last year October and had a vision to bring something different to the area.
Size? Previously an old Glass Factory (hence the name) the space presented a special blank canvas consisting of bare brick walls for them to design.
What’s on the Menu? Their menu’s stand out dish is the Mucho Breakfast – marinated steak slow cooked served on sourdough toast with a beetroot ketchup and panko crumbed slow poached eggs and their GM Waygu beef burger. The menu can be described as wholesome, good and honest and they find their inspiration in childhood memories of food and drink. They’re happy to do gluten free friendly dishes on both breakfast and lunch menus.
Bookings? Booking for groups 10 and larger.
When? June 12, 2014.
What is it? Premium, Casual dining in Melbourne’s Albert Park.
Who’s behind it? Owned by Jay Raffaele (head chef) and Christian Fox previously of Cornershop in Yarraville.
Size? 40 seating including 8 bar seating and extra comfy couches for casual cocktails and light nibbles.
What’s on the Menu? Menu based around share plates. Signature dishes include 24 hour coffee lamb with carrot puree and black garlic, Prune and Cinnamon panna cotta with orange blossom and pop-rock ice-cream, Coconut, pineapple and lime cheesecake.
Bookings? Bookings are welcomed. Also larger group sizes available for lunch on request.
When? May 27, 2014
What is it? B&B aim to provide a dynamic shift in the coffee industry, with world renowned LIVE DJ’s playing every day who provide the perfect musical backdrop to the perfect espresso. Their coffee is ‘Penny Box’ blend roasted by the Artful Dodger Trading Co – giving customers a rich chocolatey, hazelnut coffee with long lasting taste all the way into the office or on their adventures around the city.
Who’s behind it? Dylan Alexander who has 5 years in the coffee industry. He has previously worked at The Artful Dodger, School Of 7 Bells, and is about to launch his own café Soldier On at 188 High St, Windsor. Darius Bassiray and Alex Haeusler are both directors of leading Australia touring agency Funf Touring, who are responsible for bringing some of the best electronic music artists in the world to Australia such as Moby, Hot Chip and Jeff Mills.
Size? Pop Up Café. Street Trading Only.
What’s on the Menu? All espresso based coffee’s (Penny Box Blend supplied by Artful Dodger Trading Company), Loose Leaf Chai, Hot Chocolate, and Chamellia Organic Tea. Shortly they will be serving a rotational single origin coffee and are looking into bringing some sweets into the mix.
When? May 20, 2014
What is it? Coffee Specialty with a pantry serving a simple but innovative menu with passion
Size? 32 seats with bar seating
What’s on the Menu? Varied European with influxes from Britain, Eastern Europe, Switzerland, Scandinavia to all around Mediterranean Sea and Asian touches. Signature dishes including Bigos beef stew, soft shell crab brioche with light wasabi mayo
Bookings? For groups larger than 10
When? May 15, 2014
What is it? A Soul Food inspired restaurant designed around great food shared with friends and great music.
Size? 60 seats including bar seating. Designed by Techne architects
What’s on the Menu? Soul Food inspired dishes including interpreted classics such as Fried Chicken & Waffles, Pork Ribs, Mac & Cheese and Corn Bread alongside inventions such as Tongue & Cheek and Sweet Bread Nuggets.
When? May 22, 2014
What is it? Authentic South American street food.
Who’s behind it? Ignacio, from Argentina, and Andrea, from Italy. They met while studying an MBA at Monash, and decided to follow their dream of having a food business.
Size? 15 tables.
What’s on the Menu? El Alamo is specialized in Argentinian empanadas. Some of their flavors are: Beef: The classic Argentinian empanada. Premium hand-carved rump beef cooked with onion, capsicum, spring onion, the finest herbs and olives, in a reduction of red wine. Chicken: Premium hand-carved chicken breasts cooked with red and white onion, capsicum and spring onion. They add a selection of herbs and delicious curry, to finally reduce it in their special stock and deliver a scrumptious empanada. Spinach & mushroom: Sautéd fresh spinach with mushrooms from the market. Once the flavours are combined, they add a mix of parmesan and mozzarella cheese, to create a supreme empanada.
Bookings? Yes, for more than 4 people.
When? June till August, maybe longer!
What is it? Cycling, coffee and art enthusiasts can rejoice as Prahran cycle store, À Bloc has now partnered in a new pop-up with Clement Coffee, accommodating all three endorphin – inducing hobbies. The main espresso blend is named after a bike shop after all. A bloc is the perfect place for people to meet up, have a chat, eat and drink delicious things and then go for a bike ride. A rotating staff of baristas from the popular Clement Coffee South Melbourne, Market store, including M’lissa Muckerman.
Who’s behind it? Salvatore Malatesta, Jared Lawler, M’lissa Muckerman
Size? Seats 20 plus inside and out
What’s on the Menu? Matt Forbes donuts and pastries, as well as bicycle wheel size cookies from Windsor Deli.
When? June 16, 2014
What is it? The newest venue from Walker Evans Baker Restaurant Group, Chiara. Chiara sits at the urbane entrance to the vibrant Collins Square precinct. Chiara is a warm and engaging destination for guests to come together, share a meal and be immersed in the elegant space.
Who’s behind it? Lang Walker, Gavin Baker and Pete Evans from the Walker Evans Baker Restaurant Group. Chiara’s Head Chef, George Fowler, joins the team direct from his position as sous-chef at Michelin-awarded Pollen Street Social in London. Desserts will be the domain of Executive Pastry Chef, Shaun Quade. Leading the experienced front of house team is Restaurant Manager Zachary Bacon.
What’s on the menu? The rustic yet refined menu of contemporary Italian cuisine features a selection of seasonal antipasto, flatbread pizzas with rough edges and house-made pasta far from standard in styles such as strozzapretti, angolotti and gnochetti. Special attention will also be paid to crudo – raw foods such as scallops, octopus, and beef – where the high-quality produce is the star.
Contact: 705a Collins St, Melbourne. Ph. (03) 9252 7909. Website.
When? April 13, 2014
What is it? Majority is a bistro style eatery and is borne out of a passion for keeping local small produce on their plates. Majority is dedicated to eating seasonally knowing that we live in a country filled with a bountiful variety of fruits, vegetables and meats all grown and reared by passionate small farmers.
Who’s behind it? Both the owner and chef is Laura Rosadoni. After many years out of the food industry Laura decided to follow her passion for cooking and in an endeavor created Majority. Laura specializes in traditional recipes passed down through many hours spent with eager home cooks from ‘the old school’. Laura was born and raised in South Australia where she gained many skills, everything through to pastries, catering to weddings and attending numerous cooking courses overseas.
Size? Sits sixty in total.
What’s on the Menu? Breakfast highlights are the green eggs and ham with Bundarra Berkshire smoked ham, the wonderful brioche and sesame crusted chicken and waffles as well as the house made granola with seasonal fruit compote. The lunch and dinner features a variety of local free-range meats, Mediterranean inspired entree dishes and gourmet pizza’s and burgers all served and prepared freshly from burger to base.
Bookings? Either, but not required unless you are a larger group or private function.
When? May 14, 2014
What is it? Italian Pizzeria
Who’s behind it? Pizzaiolo Paulo Lapolla together with his family operate the pizzeria
Size? Number of seats 35
What’s on the Menu? Traditional thin crust pizza and made in house pasta. Signature pizzas include the Campania – San Marzano tomato, green olive, D.O.P mozzarella di bufula, San Daniele prosciutto and the Pugliese – fior di latte, cime di rapa, pork sausage, caramelised onion. Dolce: Mum’s Tiramisu
Contact: 148 Scotchmer St Fiztroy North 3068. Ph. 03 9041 0809. Facebook.
When? June 16, 2014
What is it? An Indian Fusion Kitchen redefining perceptions of Indian cuisine with our modern take on traditional Indian street food favourites.
Who’s behind it? Lalitha Rajan quit her high-flying corporate executive job to found Tadka Boom!, inspired by a her passion for food and desire to share her well-loved family recipes with Melbourne.
Size? 45 indoor and 12 outdoors.
What’s on the Menu? Mama Rajan’s original creations – serving up fusion items for breakfast, lunch and tiffin (snacks), as well as bespoke icrecream’s and traditional single-origin South Indian coffee and masala chai all day.
Their house specialty is a range of roti wraps, with the #KidKaboom! their hero – 12-hour slow-cooked lamb marinated in house spices, served in a wholemeal or spinach roti with lemon rice, salad, and a spicy yoghurt dressing. Their #Boom!osa salad is a twist on the traditional – broken potato and spinach samosas on salad with black chickpeas & three sauces. For the early riser, the #IdliOverEasy is a popular Indian breakfast of steamed rice cakes with coconut chutney, spicy tomato chutney & gunpowder served with fried eggs & spinach.
Bookings? Bookings for breakfast only
When? March 14, 2014
What is it? Neapolitan inspired wood fired pizza served from a gorgeous vintage Citroen h van.
Who? An English girl named Hannah and an Australian boy called Zak who met in Canada, learnt to make pizza in Italy and now work out of a French van in Melbourne. Together they make a formidable team.
Size? Not too big, not too small, just right.
What’s on the Menu? The best local and seasonal ingredients along with some imported Italian ingredients, such as the unbeatable San Marzano tomato, are used to make authentic Italian style pizza in a traditional wood fired oven. Simple, bursting with flavour pizza that makes a hero out of each individual ingredient. Seasonal specials feature on the menu along with year round favourites such as the ‘Funghi’ with Portobello mushrooms and truffle oil and the ‘Verde Pomodorini’ with homemade pesto, melt in your mouth prosciutto and cherry tomatoes.
Bookings? Available for private functions and events.
When? February 28, 2014
What is it? Mr Hendricks Café is a family venture; a modern French inspired café serving honest and refined dishes in a warm and inviting setting to the neighbourhood of Balwyn.
Who’s behind it? Mr Hendricks is owned by four siblings who are local to the Balwyn neighborhood and all have a hand- on part in the business. The three boys Simon, Jonathan and Ryan Cosentino have had extensive experience in the hospitality scene and the Sarah (the fourth), an Interior Architect, designed the space in collaboration with Architect Stephen McGarry.
Simon Cosentino heads up the kitchen drawing on his highly notable past experience working for the two- Michelin- starred chef Serge Vierra in Chaudes Auiges, France. Previous to this Simon was trained by one of the finest local French chefs, Phillipe Mouchel where he worked at the Brasserie and PM24 respectively for eight years. Joining Simon in the kitchen is apprentice chef Ryan Cosentino, who shared similar work experiences at PM24. Heading up the front of house team is sibling Jonathan Cosentino.
Mr Hendricks was named after their family dog, English staffy ‘Hendricks’.
Size? The space is comprised of a front dining space that seats 28 people, a middle dining room, also termed the ‘green room’ that can host private functions for a maximum of 10 people, and a three tiered outdoor dining area to the rear of the site that can seat approximately 30.
What’s on the Menu? The menu is modern with a French influence. The chefs draw upon the detailed technique typical of French cuisine to serve up dishes including; Brioche French Toast with vanilla poached pears, caramel sauce and double cream; Coconut Rice Porridge with banana compote, candied almonds and raisins and the Breakfast Cassolet served with confit duck, toulouse sausage, persillade and fried eggs.
Bookings? Yes for minimum of 6 people
Contact: 469 Whitehorse Rd, Balwyn. Ph. (03) 9830 7579. Facebook.
When? May 24, 2014
What is it? A paleo inspired café nestled in one of the most beautiful buildings in Melbourne.
Who’s behind it? Jacob Bourke + Tom Davidson. Met through Tom’s personal training business, “Tom Primal” and through the paleo lifestyle, Jacob was able to lose 25 kilos across 9 months. After returning to Melbourne from America, the two put their heads together and realised Melbourne didn’t yet have a space quite like Patch Café.
Size? Medium, designed by Style You Me
What’s on the Menu? Coffee, muffins, spanner crab omelette, roasted pork belly, and their baked eggs – tomato, chipotle and chorizo. Simple, but delicious!
Contact: 32 Bendigo St, Richmond. Ph. (03) 9029 0328. Facebook.
When? June 5, 2014
What is it? Boutique wine bar and wine shop with a focus on natural and biodynamic wines from quality-driven Australian and International producers.
Who’s behind it? Mark Nelson, formerly of Neighborhood Wine and City Wine shop and Lyndon Kubis who also owns Toorak Cellars.
Size? 75 – bar seating, communal table, banquettes and courtyard with outdoor seating.
What’s on the Menu? Snacks including charcuterie, cheese, olives and a couple of hot dishes.
When? April 27, 2014
What is it? A 1920s prohibition style restaurant and bar on Smith Street in Collingwood featuring complex barrel aged cocktails, fine aged whiskeys and a rustic, hearty selection of local produce, protein, and grain.
Who’s behind it? The Noble Experiment is owned by Daniel and Kristin Lemura, who have both had a long involvement with Melbourne’s finest venues. Chef Cameron Bell perfected his craft in Michelin starred haunts across North America and Europe. His unique culinary signature has been instrumental in shaping the culture of The Noble Experiment, and his developed style is embedded in the heart and soul of every dish. Melding influences from across the US, France and the UK, the complex culinary enigma constructed by Cameron leaves patrons with an unforgettable experience.
Size? 60-70 seats in the ground floor restaurant/bar area. An additional 15 can be seated in the upstairs mezzanine birdcage area.
What’s on the Menu? House specialties include whole head of cauliflower roasted with cheese and beer, confit duck nachos, hanger steak served with The Noble Experiment’s signature aligot potatoes and a reduced zinfandel and old style Woodford reserve whiskey jus.
Bookings? Available for large functions and small gatherings.
When? May 26, 2014
What is it? Provincial produce. A talented chef. Locally roasted Axil coffee. Dine in café menu. Ready‐made takeaway meals. Licensed venue.
Who’s behind it? Head Chef Andy Ledson
What’s on the Menu? Spanish baked eggs with house baked beans, chorizo, smoked ham hock, braised tomatoes, chilli, sourdough toast. Small batch production. Traditional methods. Family businesses. Environmentally aware.
When? May 9, 2014
What is it? Jerry Joy is a hidden gem in the back streets of Thornbury – a space that was previously occupied by The Kitschen Pantry. Serving Axil Coffee and sensational food in a modern, relaxed and friendly environment.
Who’s behind it? Owners Damien & Seona Breen wanted to bring some success they achieved at The Foodrinkery in Burwood of the neighbourhood café to the North side.
Size? 55 seat café with an outdoor covered courtyard and undercover roadside seating.
What’s on the Menu? Breakfast and lunch served all day; offering a wide range of options for allergies and intolerances. Dishes to die for include Sardine Cerviche w` Beetroot & Potato Gratin, Beetroot & Red Lentil fritters w` housemade Roast Capsicum Hommus and Apple & Almond Pikelets w Spiced Poached Apple, Crumble, Blueberry Jam & Yoghurt Foam; and for lunch its hard to go past the Wagyu Burger or the Beef Ragu w` Kohlrabi $ Celeriac Rosti, White Bean Puree, Slow Braised Cabbage & Vegetable Crisps.
Bookings? Happy to take bookings. Open Tuesday – Sunday.
Don’t miss out on any other Melbourne food & drink news – subscribe to the email list to receive every update (top right corner) and Follow @Shark4ChipDrink Know of any other places opening soon that aren’t on this list or that were missed? Let me know! Send Email. See you next month.