When craving something comforting but not actually Indian, nothing beats a plate of butter chicken, a few pieces of cheese naan, and a diet cola.
The haphazard conception of Indian food that many Westerners still hold dear is a slap in the face of authenticity, on par with horribly oozy carbonara and California rolls. In spite of this, the temptation is frequently too great to ignore, especially when compared to the wealth and variety on the other side of the credibility fence.
To avoid giving in, all you have to do is spend some time researching where in Melbourne to locate the best Indian food.
Locals in Melbourne are pampered by a wide selection of the best Indian cuisine the subcontinent has to offer, from the fiery curries and charred, puffy naan bread of the north to the savoury dosas and veg-focused dishes of the south.
These are the best Indian restaurants in Melbourne, where you can sample dishes from one of the world's most diverse culinary traditions.
Perhaps nowhere else in the world can you find such a plethora of fragrant spices as in Indian cooking. That aromatic concoction of cardamom, turmeric, ginger, and other spices can't be missed.
Indulge in a flavorful curry, authentic street cuisine, or a dish fresh from the tandoor at one of these recommended restaurants.
The Best 16 Indian Restaurants in Melbourne
You and we are both aware that the Melbourne dining scene is among the most ethnically varied in the world, but you probably already knew that. What you might not be aware of, however, is where you can find the very best Indian cuisine in your area.
In spite of the fact that there are dine-in and takeaway restaurants located all across Melbourne, we are confident that you will defend the superiority of your neighbourhood joint. However, after conducting extensive research, we have compiled the definitive list of the city of Melbourne's most noteworthy Indian dining establishments.
Daughter in Law
It's a rule that Jessi Singh's name must appear on any list of Melbourne's top Indians at least just few times. At this Little Bourke Street favourite, the Punjabi chef is among the few successful modern Indian tenants in Australia. Jessi Singh's name must appear at least a few times on any list of Melbourne's most prominent Indians. One of Australia's few successful modern Indian tenants is a Punjabi cook at this Little Bourke Street favourite. At this successful restaurant, he ingeniously reinterprets clichés both on and off the menu.
The food is a cross-country marathon of tastes and concepts, such as the aptly named "inauthentic butter chicken," which replaces the indulgent trinity of oil, butter, and ghee with an equally rich but more vibrant mixture of ginger, garlic, tomatoes, and fenugreek.
You'll find a wide range of seafood dishes here, including cashew-milk sushi with kingfish, pineapple-chutneyed shrimp, and yogurt-based desserts. The exceptional chutney platter is served with an abundance of naan bread and poppadoms. With a creative approach to Indian cuisine, this restaurant is livelier and more engaging than the typical oily Indian CBD eatery.
Melbourne, 37-41 Little Bourke Street
Milan at Kew
The classic Indian cuisine served at Milan At Kew, which can be found in the city of Melbourne's suburb of the same name, is not given nearly enough credit. As a result of the fact that you're probably only aware of this eatery via Uber Eats, authentic and traditional cooking methods are prominently shown in the food served here.
In no way should you assume that since an Indian restaurant in Milan lacks celebrity chef involvement or a lavish setting, it will serve terrible takeout food from the subcontinent. It doesn't matter if the menu isn't especially unique; the fact that they prioritise the use of high-quality ingredients makes a huge difference.
Everything from the appetisers like the eggplant aloo and to the main entrees like the lamb rogan josh and prawn biryani is made to the highest standards. This is classic and authentic Indian cuisine at its finest, and you will constantly want more.
The location of Kew is at number 44 Cotham Road.
Due to the popularity of Babu Ji, a modern Indian restaurant in St. Kilda, Victoria, Australia that later gained notoriety for its chef's improvisational style, the brand has grown to include establishments in New York and previously San Francisco.
Delicious dishes include lamb korma, Kerala fish stew, and blue pumpkin chickpea curry. The items on the menu are both light and hearty, and each is bursting with a variety of flavours.
One of my favourites is the fried calamari with curry mayo and gun powder coating. The $65 "dinner for two" is prepared with care and comes with a bottle of house wine, two curries, a huge rice dish, and two naan breads. Because of the extensive cuisine, come back to this ideal St Kilda location.
The location of St. Kilda is at 4/6 Grey St.
Tonka is another most popular modern Indian eateries in the capital, has a particular place in the hearts of Australian foodies. And among the first to promote preconceived notions about what an Indian might be in the presence of contemporary flourishes and high-quality goods.
For example, his vindaloo steak tartare and burrata with fresh coriander and burnt roti, as well as a unique lamb curry featuring black cardamom and toasted coconut, have earned him notoriety at the W Melbourne. These are some of the meals that have contributed to the chef's notoriety.
All the chef's kisses for this delightful weeknight dinner at an Indian diner in the CBD that takes a modest fine-dining turn.
This is the apex of contemporary Indian cooking.
Tonka transforms Adam D'Sylva and Hendri Budiman's traditional cuisine into city fare. Two tandoori ovens in the kitchen produce all of your favourite traditional naan dishes, and there are a number of small and large dishes for sharing and grazing.
The love child of the wildly popular Coda and a triumph of Adam D'Sylva (honouring his background) and Michael Smith, Tonka is one of Melbourne's finest Indian eateries (former head chef of Jacques Reymond).
There are surprisingly few high-end Indian restaurants in this metropolis. After experiencing wonderful high-end Indian food in other Australian places like Adelaide, overseas countries, and India itself, I was excited to see what was in store for me at Coda.
The Indian food of Melbourne has been taken on an odyssey by this fancy restaurant, which excels in both technique and flavour.
The location of Melbourne is 20 Duckboard Place.
The Spice Pantry
What kinds of dishes would you expect to find on the menu of an authentic North Indian establishment? This is nothing new. To discount The Spice Pantry, on the other hand, given that it offers not just delicious food but also a stunning setting in Prahran, would be unwise.
On the more tranquil side of Prahran, this little but tremendous powerhouse of expansive home-style Indian cuisine achieves balance despite its extensive menu.
This family-run eatery serves shahi paneer and bhindi masala as vegetarian main courses.
68 Commercial Road is where Prahran is located.
The name of Jessi Singh is prominently displayed across the menu of this Indian eatery. As soon as you step into Horn Please in North Fitzroy, the party atmosphere is so thick that you can't help but get swept up in the rowdy Bollywood tunes.
You'll need naan, but you'll also want cottage cheese and potato balls, butternut squash curry, coconut fish curry, and some delicious, cardamom-flavored sweet beef with a curry made of coconut cream and coriander.
Indulge in any of them, and you'll realise why this restaurant is considered to have a few of the best Indian food in Melbourne, and why you'll want to keep coming back here time and time again.
Horn Please's fare and ambience are as colourful as a Holi party. Taste buds will be tantalised by a wide variety of street foods and curries, which can be shared or savoured just by one person. Set menu for $50 per person includes naans, curries, desserts, rice dishes, and entrees when the restaurant isn't locked down.
Fitzroy North, Fitzroy, Victoria, Australia.
When it comes to the greatest Indian restaurant in Melbourne, Tonka and Daughter in Law take the cake, with Aangan coming in a close third. The typical Indian restaurant is an independent institution that caters not only to those Indian food enthusiasts who are notoriously difficult to satisfy but also to the rest of us.
Aangan's food continues to be dependable, despite the fact that it has multiple sites across Melbourne. It attracts customers with a variety of kebabs inspired by India, as well as a glimpse into South India's fondness for Indo-Chinese cuisine.
As a Melbourne Indian restaurant, their chicken curry, Puran Singh da Tari wala murgh, one of just a handful of eateries to pay homage to the furious street food dish from North India, is what keeps people coming back.
Although technically there are dishes with Nepalese and Indian flavours on the Aagaman menu, we'll overlook that information. It's the best lentil there is. A group of chefs with expertise in vegan cooking can be counted on to serve you some excellent vegetables. Try it for yourself; we're not the only ones who think it's the best vegan food in Melbourne.
West Footscray, 559 Barkly Street (also in Deer Park, Cranbourne, Bundoora, and Clayton)
Bombay By Night
It has been thirty years since Bombay by Night took over the private dining scene in Caulfield. Since then, the establishment has upheld its position as the premier Indian dining establishment in the region and a bastion of traditional South Asian cuisine. Three of the most popular meals on the menu are beef Romana, palak peneer, and fish curry, and regulars are quick to extol their virtues.
Given the circumstances, any solution would be acceptable. In this cosmopolitan metropolis, Indian food is easily identifiable by its distinct flavours and aromas, and the chef excels at attaining the right harmony between flavour and texture in every dish he prepares.
The address is 355 North Road, Caulfield South.
This restaurant is known for serving authentic street food from India and has a funny design. On the menu, you can get pizza, chaat, wraps, and dosa. The chef is talented enough to create delicious fusion Indian food even though some of the menu items may seem out of the ordinary.
This is illustrated by the "ChickPizza," an open-face naan bread pizza topped with chicken tikka, mozzarella, tomatoes, onions, and coriander.
If you order Indian crepes, tandoori drumsticks, or goat thali for supper, you'll be dining at one of Melbourne CBD's best Indian restaurants. This restaurant's ideal location and vast menu help keep regulars coming back.
In Brunswick, the address is 1/2A Mitchell Street.
Brunswick's Bhang is the place to go for Indian street cuisine and drinks in an invitingly refurbished warehouse setting.
Every day of the week, this spot was bustling with people meeting for a meal or a drink. Menu items with new twists and tasty approaches to regional cuisine sloshed over joyful guests. As a result, it drew in a great number of customers.
Even if you don't enjoy spicy cuisine, you won't be able to top Kerala's seafood biryani or Rajasthan's jungle maas, however the latter dish can turn off non-spicy food lovers.
Aside from having some of Melbourne's greatest Indian chefs working in the kitchen at Bhang, it also has a fantastic wine list, which is among the best in Brunswick. At this restaurant, you may put your culinary prowess to the test.
Bhang is Melbourne's best Indian cuisine, whether you have dietary restrictions or not. The entire menu is coded with symbols for vegetarians, vegans, coeliacs, and anyone allergic to nuts because we realise how difficult it can be to eat out when you have dietary limitations.
Bhang is a restaurant in India that delivers the best examples of contemporary Indian cuisine and emphasises customer care. Charcoal and alcoholic beverages are used to power it. That's true, they have a wide selection of alcoholic beverages, and everything from infusions to syrups is created in-house.
In Brunswick, at 1/2A Mitchell Street
Manpreet Sekhon, a restaurateur, most recently launched Masti, a restaurant and cocktail bar that combined. Masti debuted in 2021. There are several selections that are plant-based and animal-free in her ideal supper for a group to share. The best part is Vegan Curry Night, which is held each Tuesday (when we are not in lockdown) and features a selection of vegan curries, naan, and vegan wine, all of which can be ordered in advance for only $39 per person.
Tandoori Den, a Melbourne east local institution, has been serving consistently excellent and authentic North Indian cuisine since it originally opened its doors in 1981. In 2021, it will maintain its reputation for excellence. You may want to reconsider your decision to adopt a low-carb diet after dining here, as the menu is stocked with vegetarian options and an entire page is devoted to freshly baked tandoor bread.
South Melbourne, Australia
The pub, the bar, and the curry house that make up Mr. Brownie are all bundled into one large dining destination by the year 2021, and it has already established itself as an institution. All four floors of the establishment are occupied with one item. We owe a lot of gratitude to Jessi Singh for creating this amazing enterprise in light of the success of her previous businesses, including Horn Please, Mrs. Singh, and Daughter In Law.
The speakeasy-style bar in the basement, the beer garden, and the rooftop terrace all come to life after dark. Choosing a location to set up business will be the trickiest part, but once you're there, keep ordering drinks.
Known as Mr. Brownie, Jessi Singh has developed a vivacious Indian British curry house. Rooftop views of Melbourne and the South Melbourne neighbourhood are a special feature of this property. On each of the tavern's four levels, you can find a tasty delicacy, but the top floor is where you want to go.
However, the rooftop bar is the spot to go in the spring and summer. The cocktail bar, which is located below ground, is also a lot of fun. An Indian twist on a pub dinner is served alongside a wide assortment of beers, making for an excellent pairing.
If you don't get the Thali plate, you won't be able to eat any of the curry pies or the Indian-style Margherita pizza. Also, the fish and chips are fantastic (you should absolutely try the curry chips).
At Fitzroy's Mukka, sharing is encouraged with all of the restaurant's dishes, including the sides, curries, main courses, and even the love.
This restaurant is without a doubt one of Melbourne's best Indian restaurants, thanks to its continuously popular tandoori mushroom skewers, superb crispy pani puri snack, and consistently fantastic samosas.
Punjabi Curry Cafe
Located on Johnston Street, Punjabi Curry Cafe, a family-owned and operated restaurant, is noted for its delicious cuisine. Their pleasant, welcoming atmosphere and excellent meals have earned them an excellent reputation during the past decade in business. We recommend starting with the vegetable platter, which contains aloo Tikki, pakora, samosas, and onion bhaji. As a general rule, the best approach is to sample a wide range of cuisines. Our mouths aren't watering, but we're not salivating. You've got saliva running down your chin.
Bala Da Dhaba
The Bala Da Dhaba is a favourite among Melbourne residents as among the city's best Indian eateries. As a challenge for those of you who think you can tolerate the heat, lamb vindaloo is the dish to try out. Tomato, spices, and the herb fenugreek flavour the tandoori-cooked chicken makhani, making it a favourite among those who prefer a milder curry experience.
Indian food has a profusion of fragrant spices. At one of these eateries, you can have a tasty curry, real street food, or a dish straight from the tandoor. Jessi Singh's name must appear on any list of Melbourne's top Indians at least a few times. The classic Indian cuisine served at Milan. At Kew is not given enough credit.
The $65 dinner for two at Babu Ji comes with a bottle of house wine, two curries, a huge rice dish, and two naan breads. Tonka is another most popular modern Indian eateries in Melbourne. Prahran is a powerhouse of home-style Indian cuisine with an extensive menu. Aangan, Tonka and Daughter in Law are three of the best Indian restaurants in Melbourne. The typical Indian restaurant caters to both the foodie and non-indophile diner.
Bombay by Night is a bastion of traditional South Asian cuisine and 30 years since its founding. Brunswick's Bhang is the place to go for Indian street cuisine and drinks in an invitingly refurbished warehouse setting. The entire menu is coded with symbols for vegetarians, vegans, coeliacs, and anyone allergic to nuts because we realise how difficult it can be to eat out when you have dietary limitations. Tandoori Den, a Melbourne east local institution, has been serving consistently excellent and authentic North Indian cuisine since 1981. The pub, the bar, and the curry house that make up Mr. Brownie are all bundled into one large dining destination by the year 2021.
Mukka, Bala Da Dhaba and Punjabi Curry Cafe are some of Melbourne's best Indian restaurants. Pairing an Indian dinner with a cocktail menu makes for an excellent pairing. Try the tandoori-cooked chicken makhani or lamb vindaloo if you can tolerate the heat.
- To resist, investigate Melbourne's greatest Indian restaurants.
- Brunswick's Bhang is the place to go for Indian street cuisine and drinks in an invitingly refurbished warehouse setting.
- Bhang is Melbourne's best Indian cuisine, whether you have dietary restrictions or not.
- The pub, the bar, and the curry house that make up Mr. Brownie are all bundled into one large dining destination by the year 2021, and it has already established itself as an institution.
- Known as Mr. Brownie, Jessi Singh has developed a vivacious Indian British curry house.
FAQs About Melbourne Restaurants
The Most Popular Restaurants In Melbourne, Australia
- Red Spice Road, Melbourne CBD. Restaurant, Asian, Thai, Vegetarian, $$$
- Lake House, Daylesford.
- David's, Prahran.
- Chin Chin, Melbourne CBD.
- The Grand Hotel, Richmond.
- Vivace, Brighton.
- Rice Paper Scissors, Melbourne CBD.
- Rockpool Bar & Grill, Melbourne CBD.
Tandoori Chicken Tikka is one of the most popular Indian dishes for a reason. It is both flavour-rich and delicious. It has mouth-watering boneless chicken thighs marinated in creamy Indian yogurt and spices. Then, it is grilled in Tandoor (a clay oven) and served with hot and spicy mint chutney.
The vibrant, intensely colourful world of Indian food found an ever-increasing fan base in Australia after Australians began to travel through India during the 1960s and '70s. Each region of India has its style of cooking and distinct flavours.
Indian (Popularity Score 29)
Across the country, a taste for curries and naan has mushroomed since the 1960s, but Melbourne scored 100 points in popularity this year, Hobart second, with Sydney coming 7th with 81.
The definition of masala is a spice mixture that has been ground into a powder or paste used for cooking Indian food or a dish flavoured with this powder. A paste made of cumin and other ground spices is an example of masala.
In the Indian subcontinent, pork is a rarely found meat on menus with some notable exceptions (Goa, Kerala, Coorg, Naga, Sikkimese, and various Christian communities across the region). Hindus have no specific religious restrictions against pork, yet the dominant meats are chicken, goat/sheep and seafood.