There haven't been any noteworthy new restaurants in Melbourne's food industry for a while. However, this situation is expected to improve significantly in the coming months as a number of new eateries and coffee shops open their doors to the public.
Melbourne locals are rushing to make reservations for their first night out on the town because of this exciting development for both punters and merchants. As a result, several restaurants will wait until hospitality regulations are loosened even further, which is projected to occur when Victoria reaches 80% of its double-dose objective.
Though some establishments may accept a small number of walk-in customers, reservations are your best option for securing a table. Melbourne has a wide variety of restaurants, cafes, and pubs, and we've compiled a list of those that are now accepting reservations for the week of October 26. Initiate the long-awaited group chat, pick a favourite, and reserve a spot for the most memorable of your next dining out experiences.
This list has everything from mom-and-pop shops to five-star restaurants, so no one will be left out. Looking for a new favourite restaurant? Here are some of the most talked-about Melbourne restaurant openings this season.
Melbourne Restaurants And Cafes Reopening
Your go-to restaurants have been closed for months or have limited their offerings to takeout. There are some that have permanently closed their doors.
A lot of them, though, are on their way back and can't wait to see you again. It's time to get ready to go back out there and back them up if you feel up to it.
This real-time list will tell you which restaurants are returning and when, as well as any special events they have scheduled.
Firebird By Hanoi Hannah
If you're a genuine Melbourian, you've almost certainly heard of Hanoi Hannah, and if you enjoy Asian-fusion cuisine, you almost certainly eat there on a regular basis. Firebird has joined the Hanoi Hannah family, bringing plenty of fire and flavour to its great Windsor location.
The dining room, with 110 seats, draws you in from the busy High Street with a combination of cosy low-key lighting and hot, inviting tones. The two floors were combined into one by the interior designers at Ewert Leaf, who also gave the space a modern manufacturing makeover with exposed beams and raw concrete.
The showpiece is the made-to-order chargrill and woodfired furnaces, which are located in the kitchen and are clearly visible to the guests.
Where have you been all our lives, Mister Bianco? From the laidback setting and flawlessly blended Aperol Spritzes to the linguine Pescatore and the crumbed veal schnitzel (our favourite), everything here feels like it's been brought from the Sicilian countryside...with a Melbourne twist, of course. A terrific option for a boozy lunch with friends or a dinner to impress.
Daughter In Law
Daughter In Law, a new restaurant in Melbourne, is quickly becoming a favourite among locals and visitors alike thanks to its authentic, homemade Indian fare. This Little Bourke Street establishment is run by celebrity chef Jessi Singh but serves a skewed take on Indian cuisine.
The wide menu of Daughter In Law is sure to leave you salivating. You can choose a light bar snack like scallop ceviches or beef tartare, or treat yourself to a full meal for one with dishes like coconut seafood curry or hog neck vindaloo.
Try one of their naan pizzas if you're craving something basic. They offer a $15 quick lunch special Monday through Friday, making it easy to get in and out of the restaurant in a hurry.
So, let's move on to beverages. Drinks of many kinds, from nonalcoholic to alcoholic, feature vivid hues and interesting ingredients (like beetroot juice) that are sure to please. Rest assured, they stock beer as well. Good luck getting out of here between the hours of 4 and 6 during happy hour, when you can help yourself to a drink from the self-serve bar.
Not only will you feel like you've stepped into a Bollywood film thanks to the Bollywood flicks projected into the walls and the Bollywood music from the 1970s playing in the background, but you'll actually feel like you've stepped into a Bollywood film. You can unwind in one of their ocean-blue velvet seats or their light-pink bar lounge, all of which have decor influenced by Indian culture. This arena has 95 seats, so everyone should be able to find a good spot.
One of Melbourne's most popular modern Thai eateries has undergone a complete renovation. There are brand new floors and lighting, a royal blue colour scheme in place of the previous greens, a sizable mirrored back-bar fashioned after an antique Chinese bookcase, blue leather-upholstered, high-back stools, brand new rock posters, brand new bathrooms, and brand new, state-of-the-art kitchen appliances.
They have not just renovated their interiors. The menus and drink lists have also been updated. About 30 per cent of the menu has been removed and replaced with new recipes, and the cocktail list now features more South and Southeast Asian components, such as Thai Iced Tea and Tom Yum Bloody Mary.
Gay yang (Thai-style grilled chicken), Wagyu rump cap, and barbecued pumpkin and broccolini may now be found in a dedicated barbeque section. For those who are reluctant to embrace change, however, staples like massaman, sashimi, soft-shelled crab, and barra salad remain on the menu.
We still love meeting up with friends at Chin Chin in the heart of the city to enjoy the lively atmosphere, great food, and excellent wine. If you're looking for a change of pace or just want to keep the party going all night, check out the newly renovated Go Go Bar downstairs.
Shanghai-born David Zhou has been providing Prahran residents with culinary delights since 1999 when he started his namesake restaurant. David's, with its decor evoking rural Shanghai, serves traditional meals with a modern touch; their weekend brunch is not to be missed. One of the best yum chas around, and at only $39 on Saturdays and $39 on Sundays, it's a steal.
In addition to serving alcohol, David's also allows BYO (with a $10 corkage fee) every day of the week except Friday and Saturday evenings and Sunday lunch.
That the creators of Bar Carolina and Il Bacaro are also responsible for Marameo should serve as your first clue that you're in for a wonderful time. What we want to do is experimental. The Italian hand gesture "Marameo" conjures an image of a sly little girl up to no good. A place where people can come to relax and have fun is exactly what we're aiming for.
Mammone and Michael Badr have opened an Italian restaurant on Russell Place, away from the rush and activity of Melbourne's Central Business District.
The restaurant's indoor seating area and courtyard can accommodate up to 80 customers. This restaurant is great for a quick bite in between meetings or a relaxing dinner with coworkers and a few drinks after work.
Marano offers over 300 different wines, several spirits, a fantastic cocktail menu, and a menu dedicated just to spritzes.
Tetto di Carolina
Tetto di Carolina has a wide selection of upscale drinks for adults. High-quality cocktails for all cocktail aficionados may be found on their cocktail list, which was devised and crafted by award-winning cocktail bartender Alex Dysart. The American Beauty, which combines aperitif, sweet vermouth (we like Maidenii), strawberry and jasmine syrup, and prosecco, is our favourite.
In addition to a well-curated collection of Australian and European wines, they also stock quality champagnes and sparkling wines. Pair your beverage of choice with an item from their small plate menu influenced by Italian cuisines, such as the pine-smoked mussels or the fiery I.R.C.
Those who would like to experience the highest standards of service and hospitality are cordially invited inside. You'll get the kind of attention and care here that you deserve, and you can count on having all of your needs fulfilled quickly and expertly. You won't find anything like this European jazz bar in Melbourne. This fantastic bar removes the need to host parties at home, promising a night of great melodies, warm wood, and refreshing drinks instead.
Even though the front door is still decorated with a faded Carousel ice cream marker, the atmosphere inside Bar Carolina is miles away from double scoop vanilla with additional sprinkles.
This will be the chef/owner Joe Mammone's first venture south of the river after previously delighting diners in the Central Business District with his restaurants Il Bacaro and Sarti. It's a classy, Euro-modern bistro. The details are everything, as they always are with anything Mammone touches.
No easy task, but with Chris Connell and engineer Michael Amore on the job, the transformation of a dilapidated Carousel store into a high-end Italian restaurant is well under way. You get the impression that you are dining on the Grand Canal in 2017 rather than 1957 thanks to the updated decor. Mammone aimed for a more contemporary aesthetic with the terrazzo floors, handcrafted leadlights, unique steel from Amore, and sporadic splashes of blue.
The restaurant's crowning achievement is a wood-burning Josper oven that was shipped all the way from Spain. The venerable Josper is used freely by chef de cuisine Paolo Masciopinto to make mouthwatering main dishes like wild barramundi that is coated in salt and herbs and served in a steaming packet. A massive 700g rib-eye steak and a small scoop of seeded mustard are placed on the table.
For those who prefer less Flinstonian fare, there is hand-made pasta and exquisite vegetarian entrees like beetroot-filled ravioli with goat cheese and poppy seeds or maple-roasted carrots with cashews, pine nuts, and fresh cheese. On the pasta menu, look for dishes like the braised baby goat with wide beans and shaved salted ricotta, or the tagliolini with Moreton Bay bugs, porcini, and dried chillies.
What happens next? The tiramisu might be to blame. We've consumed so much tiramisu than you have cooked dinners as of right now. We've never seen anything like the hedonistic concoction of coffee, savoiardi, and mascarpone inside the white chocolate sphere with nitrogen smoke circling the plate. Delicious!
Melbourne's dining scene has been revolutionised, and Tokyo Tina might be seen as a metaphor for this. Add three members of the powerful Commune Group—Simon Blacher, Paul Nguyen, and Nic Coulter—to a rundown Chapel Street bong shop and let the whole thing simmer on a low boil for a while. So what does that mean? Tina in Tokyo. The third sibling with a name that starts with an alliterative cuisine city, following after Hanoi Hannah and Saigon Sally (RIP). Those folks seem like they're going to be delicious.
Tokyo Tina is one of Windsor's "it" restaurants, along with Hanoi Hannah, Hawker Hall, and (possibly) Sash Japanese. It doesn't even matter if it's the middle of June on a Tuesday and it's freezing outside. Expect a pulsating atmosphere here.
Especially since Easter when chef Scott Lord acquired a Bradley Smoker. For lunchtime now, he's cranking out bowls of spectacular smoked brisket ramen. What you need as Melbourne sinks into another cold, miserable winter of long coats and hopelessness.
Neptune is seafood and Italian restaurant with two distinct atmospheres: during the day, it is a laid-back spot ideal for a midday snack, and in the evening, it transforms into a cocktail saloon complete with dim lighting and background music and a whisky locker.
Neptune has a solid Melbourne background, and with this winning combination, so it could become a staple of the Friday night culinary scene on High St.
Bar snacks include fritto misto (similar to Italian tempura), sage anchovy fritters, and fried mussels, all of which are seafood. The market fish cooked en papillote or the anchovy spaghetti Aglio e olio are both hearty options. Each one is superb. And worry not Vegas; the menu features a few dishes that managed to avoid being caught in a nett.
The drink list is small, but the wine list is extensive. Tell your waiter if there's a particular bottle you enjoyed, and they'll bring you more of it. What a nice addition.
Baby Pizza, located in the heart of Richmond, is the beautiful Italian half-sister to Melbourne's hip Asian haven, Chin Chin. White booths and wooden tables are decorated with modern simplicity, and a lovely patio with green umbrellas provides outside seating. Pink neon lights and girls who playfully lick their lips provide a touch of quirkiness and charm.
Twenty pizzas, all made with traditional Italian ingredients like fresh mozzarella and savoury pancetta, are available from the extensive menu. Breakfast is served as well, with traditional options including bircher and eggs. Baby has thought of everything (pizza-wise).
Kisume translates to "an unadulterated preoccupation with charm," which is appropriate given the setting. The restaurant features a sushi bar on the main floor, a steamy kitchen in the basement, and an omakase bar and dining area on the second floor.
Yonge Kim, the head chef, leads an equally amazing staff that Lucas has put together. It would not be worth knowing anything about Japanese food that these men don't already know.
Tamago Mushi, a beautifully presented dish made of egg custard, prawns, and shitake mushrooms; steamed King Crab gyoza; grilled mackerel with sesame ponzu; are just a few of the tasty options from the extensive hot and cold menu.
We've got our eyes on the grilled Yellowfin tataki with wasabi tofu and the crispy Wagyu truffles with truffle miso. In terms of beverages, you're set as well: Kisume is Australia's first Chablis bar and features expansive glass cabinets stocked with Pinot Noir, Riesling, rare Sake, and Japanese Whisky. Congratulations, Chris Lucas! Thanks for the win.
Radio Mexico, which combines elements of food trucks with fine dining, is the best Mexican restaurant in St. Kilda. The traditional Mexican fare on the reasonably priced menu, such as tacos, quesadillas, ceviche, and deep-fried tortilla chips, will not only keep you there drinking lots of tequila with your pals. In their bayside bar, you can watch the sunset over St. Kilda while sipping a Mexican draught beer among the cacti and graffiti.
The greatest Indian restaurant within a reasonable distance from any Melburnian home should be widely known. It's one of those fundamentals you need to know. A big bowl of goat Bhuna Masala or (statistically more likely) Butter Chicken, together with some A4-sized garlic naan, is sometimes the only meal that will do the trick.
If you're in the Fitzroy North neighbourhood, your best bet is Horn Please, a modern Indian eatery run by Amarjeet (Amar) Singh, who also serves as owner and chef. Horn Please, which takes its name from the phrases painted by hand seen on automobiles around India, has been a fixture in Fitzroy since it first opened in 2013.
While the menu of Singh is small, it nevertheless has all of your favourites. The core concept is north and south Indian cuisine with a modern touch, including dishes like coconut fish curry with Blue Grenadier, turmeric, tempered mustard seed, and crisp tiny 'Gol Gappa' puri.
Although most customers will naturally order what they are most acquainted with, we encourage you to try something new from the menu. Crab Tikki, made of golden potato croquettes stuffed with fresh blue swimmer crab, and beetroot paneer tikka (beetroot marinated curd cheese, seared to perfection in the tandoor), are both excellent options.
Mango lassis cost under $4, and if you have room after all that naan, there is a dessert buffet that will blow your mind. Enjoy Horn Please's signature Kulfi ice cream, available in a variety of flavours like cardamom, honey & pistachio, and lychee. How shocking!
The city's restaurant scene is experiencing a shortage of new eateries and coffee shops opening their doors to the public. Here are some of the most talked-about Melbourne restaurant openings this season. Daughter In Law, a new restaurant in Melbourne, is quickly becoming a favourite among locals and visitors alike thanks to its authentic, homemade Indian fare. Mammone and Michael Badr have opened an Italian restaurant on Russell Place, away from Melbourne's Central Business District. About 30 per cent of the menu has been removed and replaced with new recipes, and the cocktail list now features more South and Southeast Asian components, such as Thai Iced Tea and Tom Yum Bloody Mary.
Tetto di Carolina is a well-curated collection of Australian and European wines. Bar Carolina is chef/owner Joe Mammone's first venture south of the river. The restaurant's crowning achievement is a wood-burning Josper oven that was shipped all the way from Spain. You won't find anything like this European jazz bar in Melbourne. Tina is one of Windsor's "it" restaurants, along with Hanoi Hannah, Hawker Hall, and (possibly) Sash Japanese.
Expect a pulsating atmosphere here, especially since Easter when chef Scott Lord acquired a Bradley Smoker. Neptune is seafood and Italian restaurant with two distinct atmospheres. What you need as Melbourne sinks into another cold, miserable winter of long coats and hopelessness. Kisume is Australia's first Chablis bar and features expansive glass cabinets stocked with Pinot Noir, Riesling, rare Sake, and Japanese Whisky. Tamago Mushi is a beautifully presented dish made of egg custard, prawns, and shitake mushrooms.
Thanks for the win. The restaurant features a sushi bar on the main floor, a steamy kitchen in the basement, and an omakase bar and dining area on the second floor. Radio Mexico is the best Mexican restaurant in St. Kilda, Melbourne.
- Daughter In Law, a new restaurant in Melbourne, is quickly becoming a favourite among locals and visitors alike thanks to its authentic, homemade Indian fare.
- Mammone and Michael Badr have opened an Italian restaurant on Russell Place, away from the rush and activity of Melbourne's Central Business District.
- Tetto di Carolina has a wide selection of upscale drinks for adults.
- Baby Pizza, located in the heart of Richmond, is the beautiful Italian half-sister to Melbourne's hip Asian haven, Chin Chin.
- Radio Mexico, which combines elements of food trucks with fine dining, is the best Mexican restaurant in St. Kilda.
- If you're in the Fitzroy North neighbourhood, your best bet is Horn Please, a modern Indian eatery run by Amarjeet (Amar) Singh, who also serves as owner and chef.
FAQs About Melbourne Restaurants & Cafes
It shouldn't be too hard to find somewhere - there are more than 1600 cafes and restaurants to choose from, data from the City of Melbourne shows.
Opening from October 22
- Old Palm Liquor.
- Pepe's Italian & Liquor.
- Mabu Mabu Big Esso.
- Farmer's Daughters.
- Lagoon Dining.
What is open now in Victoria
- Museums Victoria. Melbourne Museum, Scienceworks, the Immigration Museum and IMAX have reopened.
- The State Library of Victoria.
- Melbourne Aquarium.
- Tourist accommodation, caravan parks and campgrounds.
- Dine-in for restaurants, cafés and bars.
- Melbourne zoos.
Coffee shops can stay open as long as they can 'operate as a restaurant and serve hot drinks. When it comes to who you can go to a cafe with, you shouldn't sit indoors with anyone who's not in your household.
Pubs, cafes and restaurants must remain shut in Tier 3 areas except for takeaway and delivery services, and households cannot mix in public places outdoors.