Greek Food Restaurants

What Are The Best Greek Food Restaurants In Melbourne?

Legend has it that European and Mediterranean cuisine met one night, had an XXXperience and bore a child— and that child was Greek food. It’s a unique hybrid of tastes that gives you the best of both worlds and hits the spot every time. 

From pita bread to souvlakis, slow-cooked lamb to rotisserie chickens, seafood to dolmades, and cheeses to baklava — all waiting to be devoured at the best Greek restaurants in Melbourne.

Following waves of immigration in the sixties and seventies, Greek food and culture have become a huge part of Melbourne’s culinary identity. 

We’ve got the largest Greek population outside of Athens, so it’s no surprise the city is brimming with Greek taverns and family-owned restaurants to suit all occasions and budgets

It’s a tough task, but we’ve pulled together the best Greek restaurants in Melbourne, with plenty of options for the soul-fans, seafood lovers, dairy queens and vegetarians out there. 

Greek Food Restaurants

Your Guide To The Best 23 Greek Restaurants In Melbourne

The Victorian state capital is home to many Greek restaurants open from the crack of dawn ’till late hours, so you can kick off your day or end the night with all types of Greek goddesses!

Here is a list of the best Greek restaurants in Melbourne.

Jimmy Grants

This place serves the kind of Greek food you actually wouldn’t expect as they claim themselves: “Prepared slow. Served fast.” There are several Jimmy’s locations in the Melbourne area that serve real Greek street food with very fresh and tasty ingredients.

Among their dessert selection, Vanilla Baklava with Salted Caramel Ice Cream is a deserved star on their menu, and it is not to be missed.

Stalactites

This eatery is well-known for its dishes of meat accompanied by dips. A family business that has been run by the same family since the late ‘70s, Stalactites is nothing short of a Greek dining institution in Australia.

Loved for its traditional Greek dishes, Stalactites serves souvlaki, genista, and moussaka, as well as a delicious homemade spanakopita.

If you haven’t been to Stalactites yet, are you even a Melburnian? This iconic family-owned restaurant in the CBD is one of the best Greek restaurants Melbourne has going for it. From the literal stalactite-covered ceiling to the fast-paced service, it’s one-of-a-kind. There’s usually a line for a table in the evenings, but it’s so worth the wait. 

Start with the pita and dips before gorging on subs and gyros. They also have a pretty great kids’ menu with far more options than your standard selection of burgers and chips. 

By popular review, the best Greek restaurant in Melbourne is Stalactites. Since 1978, this stalwart eatery has offered customers a Greek feast of souvlaki, traditional dips and baked dishes to kick off or end their night. 

The eatery serves many savoury dips, chicken and lamb gyros, and if you’re up for a meaty meal, then their moussaka will leave you unconscious. And a word of advice: don’t miss out on the Tsitsipas souvlaki; it’s a lamb gyro, tomato, tzatziki, fresh pomegranate, fresh basil and mint, crumbled feta, chips and a hit of chilli.

Hellas Cakes

The home of Greek sweets and pastry delicacies since 1962, Hellas Cakes serves an inviting menu of Greek breakfasts as well as quick lunches featuring spanakopita and tiropita (cheese pie).

ENA Greek Street Food

ENA specialises in innovative dishes inspired by the street food of Greece, made with simple, fresh and tasty ingredients in a very relaxed atmosphere. Their coffee is a custom in-house blend as well.

Yiannis

Yiannis is a family-owned taverna serving a variety of charcoal-grilled meats and seafood. Appetisers, dolmades, dips, and fried zucchini are perennial best-sellers, but their Galaktoboureko is an absolute must.

The Press Club

This intimate and relaxed dining experience with only ten booths pays homage to the spirit of Philotimo and classic Hellenic dishes. The Press Club presents an ever-evolving menu that combines ancient ingredients with new culinary techniques.

Demitri’s Feast

A small café open for breakfast and lunches, Demitri’s Feast offers a contemporary Greek menu and some interesting proposals for breakfast.

It’s Greek food by a Greek guy, as advertised. This place is a casual eatery and bar known for their tapas-style menu and their love of ouzo and the Richmond Football Club. But footy aside, Dimitri’s is a cosy place to stop by for a few drinks or settle in for a Greek feast. Try the grilled calamari and marinated grilled chicken skewers. You can thank us later. 

Bahari

bahari

Bahari boasts an ever-changing menu with offerings that feature a perfect balance of spices. They say that Greek food is traditionally enjoyed with family and friends. As such, ‘Bahari’ embodies this philosophy and presents a shared menu, encouraging people to share an assortment of dishes throughout their dining experience.

Since 2014, Masterchef alumnus Philip Vakos has shared his take on Hellenic food in his Swan St haunt, Bahari

What started as a restaurant has grown into so much more—they now offer at-home feasts, picnic hampers, catering services, masterclasses and grazing boxes alongside their in-house service in the restaurant, cocktail bar and upstairs dining room. 

The menu is designed for sharing, with Vakos’ signature ‘Gringlish’ style filtered across the menu. We’d recommend the saganaki sliders and moussaka toastie—you can’t go wrong. 

Bahari, The Hellenic Palate, is a Greek restaurant in Melbourne like no other. The unique vibe of the restaurant is its take on Greek food and lifestyle and embodies this philosophy in their moreish menu. 

With an ever-changing specials menu, guests can try something a little different each time they visit. But a stagnant menu favourite is the moussaka, a dish layered with a corpulent amount of potato and based with heart ground meat. Other delicious menu choices include the chicken ‘spanakopita sauce’ meatballs and the Kataifi prawns with aioli.

Jim’s Greek Tavern

A unique space with no actual menu, at Jim’s Greek Tavern, your waiter will craft your order for you based on your taste and your pocket. There are many unique meat dishes, seafood and house-made dips from which to choose.

Generations of Melbourne diners have spent a night at Jim’s Greek Tavern—it’s like a rite of passage we all must go through. But once you’ve been, you’ll understand why. 

Jim’s is one of the most authentic Greek taverns in Melbourne, known for their traditional service with no menu, no prices, and generous serves. 

It’s bustling and noisy and a bit confusing at times, but the food has kept people coming back for decades. Add it to your to-do list if you haven’t already made the trip. 

Greek goddess statuettes, palace-like walls and a hectic eating atmosphere with waiters shouting out orders in Greek; that’s just some of the defining features of Jim’s Greek Tavern. Edible features are Greek favourites, like souvlaki and meze, in a lively, long-running brick taverna with an open fire. 

This fine institution stays true to tradition, serving up flamboyant classic dishes. You’ll be guided through a selection of homemade dips and a myriad of meats and seafood. The restaurant additionally specialises in seafood, lamb, and Galaktoboureko (a dessert).

Plaka

Known as one of the best suburban Greek restaurants in Melbourne, which is the locals' choice for its amazing seafood. Plaka is a family restaurant that offers a full a la carte menu available for takeout.

Hellenic Republic

“Keeping things simple,” as they like to state, just like Yia Yia did, the Hellenic Republic restaurant sources fresh, quality produce from Greece and Melbourne, creating authentic Hellenic recipes, straight from Yia Yia’s recipe box.

Gazi

Sister restaurant to the Hellenic Republic and the Press Club, Gazi Restaurant serves wood-fired grill dishes, wood-fire spit-roasted meats, and what it calls its “Hellenic Dirty Food” selection of spicy pork and leek sausage stew, all in a very relaxed, informal atmosphere.

Gracie Greco

Camberwell

One of Melbourne’s newest Greek restaurants, Gracie Greco, is a family-owned and run tavern serving traditional recipes in Camberwell. 

The grandparents are in the kitchen cooking up a storm while the two sons run the beautiful bar and front of the house. As for the food, the grilled halloumi is legit drool-worthy—it’s slathered in honey and toasted sesame seeds and is oh so gooey. 

The genista (stuffed peppers) are amazing, with both a vegetarian and beef variety available. No one will go home hungry. And you have to try the loukoumades (Greek doughnuts) for dessert. 

Venus and Co

Albert Park

Bayside Greek doesn’t get much better than Venus and Co. The Albert Park restaurant offers both dine-in and takeaway, with a semi à la carte, banquet-style menu taking centre stage. 

The dips are the place to start before working your way through from the small plates to the larger share plates and mains. Save room for dessert, though, because the kataifi and baklava ice cream sandwich are every bit as good as they sound. 

Let’s say that Venus & Co is a Greek restaurant in Melbourne with a twist — a Cypriot one. Cypriot cuisine is a blend of Greek and Mediterranean cuisine that gives you the taste of both worlds. 

The restaurant presents an authentic style of food and drink, using high-quality produce. Though, beware! Their slow-roasted lamb shoulder with honey, pomegranate glaze, confit garlic and mint yoghurt is deadly. And the Halva Sundae sesame ice cream with salted caramel and sesame brittle is also tempting.

Tsindos Greek Kitchen

CBD

Established in 1975, the family-owned and run Tsindos is one of the best Greek restaurants in Melbourne’s CBD. Three generations into operation, they continue to serve traditional favourites from dolmades and moussaka to genista and souvlakis. 

Their salads are equally worthy of praise, with plenty of options for vegetarians and meat-lovers alike. They also offer Greek wines and spirits to pair with your meal if you want to have an authentically Greek evening. 

There’s plenty of good food to be found on Lonsdale Street in Melbourne, and Tsindos Greek Restaurant is no exception. Tsindos has been serving traditional Greek food for over 40 years. The laid-back atmosphere of Tsindos makes it the perfect place to have a heart-to-heart with friends over a stately meal. 

As the third best Greek restaurant in Melbourne, you can anticipate mixed dips, saganaki, grilled octopus, dolmades, Greek salad, seafood platters, meat platters, souvlakis and desserts. Other traditional Greek appetisers include halloumi, grilled artichoke and feta, fried zucchini and much more!

Yassa's

Southbank

Southbank can be a bit hit and miss with tourist traps aplenty, but Yassas is one of the good ones. They’ve since opened up two more venues in Docklands and Eastland, spreading the Greek goodness to the burbs. 

Their calamari is seriously good, and the yemista deserves a chef’s kiss. If you’re on the hungry side, we’d suggest going in for a feast. They offer two feast options, plus a feast for kids and platters for sharing (including a dessert plate). 

With three bustling locations that are chock-a-block during opening hours, Yassas is cosmic. Bringing a modern Melbourne twist to authentic Greek street food, you’ll experience the vibrant atmosphere of Greece with a Melbourne edge. 

Their wall-to-wall menu has something for everyone, but you can’t go past their signature dishes. The classic Skepasti; two pita sandwiches with a choice of filling, cheese, tomato, onions and special sauce, served with chips or salad. The eatery also has gyro snack packs.

Salona

Richmond

High tea, anyone? We don’t normally associate Greek cuisine with high tea, but Salona in Richmond is ready to change your mind. Book in for either the regular or the bottomless Athenian High Tea—you can guess which one we’re keen for—and indulge on a Mediterranean plate-stand of treats. 

Besides the high tea, they also offer a concise but tasty menu for lunch and dinner, or you can have a flight of cocktails with a mixed meze board. Salona is the place to go if you like your dinner with a side of decadence. 

Gyros, calamari and creamy dips in a narrow room with Greek-style murals—that’s what you’ll get in Salona. The stately Salona in Richmond is turning heads and satisfying stomachs with its bona fide Greek food and heart-warming hospitality. And its owners have done an incredible job in paying homage to the seasonal cuisine and preserving age-old recipes. 

And banquets are the way it’s done at this place! The lunch banquet at $35 pp is most sought-after; house-made dips, pita bread, seed crusted saganaki croquettes, zucchini & smoked feta kofte, chicken gyros, greek salad, and chips crowned with oregano.

Melina on the Rooftop

CBD

When we think of Greece, we often picture the pristine views across the Mediterranean. While the views at Melina on the Rooftop aren’t quite Santorini-level stunning, they offer a pretty spectacular view of Melbourne’s CBD. 

Named after the Greek actress-turned-politician Melina Mercouri, this rooftop bar and restaurant share her passion for culture and style. They offer some pretty spectacular meze-inspired grazing boards along with some delicious cocktails. Perfect for a date night or long lunch. 

Greek Food Restaurants

Eleni’s Kitchen and Bar

Yarraville

If it’s family cooking you’re after, then head to Eleni’s Kitchen and Bar in Yarraville. Marking 50 years of family hospitality businesses in Yarraville this year, Eleni’s is the best Greek restaurant in Melbourne for authentic home-style food. 

Named after the family matriarch, the space offers a gorgeous outdoor terrace with regular plate-smashing and live music on the weekends. The desserts are a sight to behold, too, with their in-house pastry chef churning out stunning made-to-order treats.

Ambrosia

Hawthorn East

If you’re in the mood for some charcoal grill, then head to Ambrosia. Technically the menu is ‘Mediterranean’ rather than strictly Greek, but their charcoal skewers and steaks are a treat for any carnivore. 

If you’re not a meat fan, then their starter menu is generous enough to be a feast in itself with plenty of vegetarian options. The wine list is just as generous, with a range of Italian and French wines alongside local drops. 

Mediterranean Greek Tavern

Elsternwick

Freshness is the keyword at John and Angelo’s Mediterranean Greek Tavern. Everything is handpicked and selected from the market each morning to be served on your plate that night, so you know you’re getting the freshest meal possible. 

The menu slants to the seafood side of things, with fish, calamari, prawns and oysters on offer each day, along with plenty of entree options, Greek wines and platters for sharing. It’s a wonderful local gem that’s worth every cent. 

Philhellene

Moonee Ponds

In the Good Food Guide, Philhellene celebrates provincial Greek cuisine and culture with a strong Cretan influence. Eating at Philhellene is like eating in a Greek home, with family recipes dominating the menu and owners Susie and John’s mothers preparing everything in the kitchen. 

It’s all about the love for Greek cuisine and culture here, and you can taste it in the food from the dips to the souvlakis.  

Olive Oil and Butter

Yarraville

Olive Oil and Butter is a cafe, but we had to include it. This local brunch spot is the place to go for Med-style pastries and cakes. 

Their range of filo pastries is made in-house from scratch—along with everything else on the menu. They also have a range of gourmet food products for sale in-store and a cabinet full of pastries that are pretty hard to resist. Perfect for brunch or a coffee date

FAQs About Melbourne Restaurants

When Greek immigrants flocked to Australia after World War II, little did they realise how warmly their food would later be embraced? 

Australia, with its plentiful seafood, propensity for olive growing and rich and fertile soils, clearly lent itself to the so-called “Mediterranean diet”. But for many years, Greek immigrants were instead synonymous with milk bars and burger joints.

Souvlaki, loukoumades, moussaka, spanakopita and taramasalata were soon introduced, and many Greek dishes remain a staple of milk bar culture across Australia. 

Once Greek immigration took off in the 1950s, so did the demand for Greek food. Fib pastry delicacies were soon supplied to restaurants across the cities and industries for Greek yoghurts, feta, halloumi, and kefalotyri. However, it wasn’t until the 1980s that restaurants serving exclusively Greek food began opening.

The first Greeks came to Australia in the early 19th century, but most arrived here between the end of World War II and the 1970s — and most came to Victoria. Melbourne is the epicentre of the Australian Greek community, but that community extends across the country and into major aspects of our culinary lives.

The Greek influence on Australia's dining scene today is clear. Dishes such as souvlaki, taramasalata, loukoumades, saganaki, moussaka, spanakopita and more are part of the national diet. The restaurant scene offers various Greek food experiences, from street food to high-end fine-diners.

But the embrace of Greek cuisine is a relatively recent phenomenon. Restaurants serving Greek food became visible in the 1970s and '80s, but there were generations of Greek-run places before then, stretching as far back as the gold rushes of the 1800s.

A typical Greek breakfast usually consists of a wide variety of bread, pastry, fruits, and Greek yogurt. These foods are high in nutritional value and a great source of energy — an excellent way to begin your Greek food adventures!

Conclusion

Melbourne is the second-largest urban area in Australia after Sydney. It is also one of the most culturally diverse cities and home to one of the largest Greek diaspora communities in the world; the largest Greek-speaking population outside Greece lives in the area.

All this can only mean one thing, Melbourne is home to a seemingly- endless range of Greek restaurants and tavernas!

Resources:

Your 2021 Guide To The Best Greek Restaurants In Melbourne

10 Best Greek Restaurants in Melbourne

The Twelve Best Greek Restaurants in Melbourne

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