10 of my favourite places to eat in Melbourne

Sunset over Melbourne City

I’ve realised recently that I don’t write anywhere near enough about my current hometown Melbourne! So I thought it was high time that I started sharing with you some of my regular haunts and local info, so you can make the most out of your visit to Melbourne. Today I’m sharing some of my favourite places to eat in Melbourne’s inner city. There is a really strong Asian flavour to this list as that’s my favourite style of food!

Hutong Dumpling Bar – These are some of the best dumplings in Melbourne in my opinion (having never been to China!). Their speciality is xiao long bao, lovely steamed pork dumplings with broth inside – absolutely delicious. They have a wide range of other dumplings and dim sum also (their wontons in chilli oil are another favourite of mine). The menu doesn’t stop there (although I have been there many a time and only had dumplings!), there’s also a good range of stir-fried and hotpot dishes. If you’re keen to try their food, make sure you do make a booking as they are usually full (particularly on weekends).

China Red – Another dumpling place that’s tucked away in one of the shopping arcades off Chinatown in the CBD, and owned by the same people that own Hutong, so you know the dumplings are going to be just as good. It’s a little easier to get in here, so it’s always a good second options if Hutong is booked out. One thing that’s really novel is the ordering system. Rather than having a traditional waiter, you instead place your order via a touchscreen mounted on the wall next to each table. Drinks and food come out really quickly, and there’s a huge range of food that’s all reasonably priced.

China Red Touchscreen Ordering
Ordering on the touchscreen at China Red

Hofbrauhaus – This is a really fun night out in the CBD, with giant steins of beer and huge hearty servings of German cuisine. There’s always a floor show with German dancing and live music (including crowd participation!), and the atmosphere is great – you almost feel like you could be in a beer hall in Germany. They also have on their drinks list a metre of schnapps, which comes out in a wooden paddle with many shots of schnapps in all different flavours. They’ll even customise the flavours for you if you want (we’re quite partial to ordering the whole metre as cloudy apple – it’s delicious!). You’ll need to book up to a couple of weeks in advance to dine here, it’s a very popular place. There is also a small bar attached as well, where you can go just to have a few steins and a freshly baked pretzel or a small meal.

G2 Korean BBQ – Located in the heart of the city on Elizabeth St, G2 serves Korean BBQ with all of the accompaniments. I’ve only been here once and it was my first time trying Korean BBQ, but I really enjoyed the meal here. We selected a mixed banquet with both pork belly and beef, which was delicious. The meat is cooked over coal burners rather than the gas jets that they have in some places, which gave a really lovely smoky flavour to the meat. Another upside was that the wait staff came and cooked the BBQ at our table for us – perfect for us Korean BBQ novices!

Gyoza Douraku and Gyoza Gyoza – Serving Japanese tapas style food, Gyoza Douraku is located on Bourke St in the CBD, while its newly opened sister restaurant Gyoza Gyoza is found in Chinatown. As indicated by the name these guys have a huge range of different flavours of gyoza (Japanese dumplings), all delicious. They also have a large range of other Japanese cuisine – I haven’t had a bad dish there yet. The wait staff are friendly and attentive, and always happy to recommend you a sake from their extensive list to suit your taste.

Chiangmai Thai Cuisine – Located on Lygon St in Carlton, this is one of my favourite Thai places to eat. They have a good range on their menu with a Northern Thai flavour, and the food is consistently good. If you like your food Thai spicy, make sure you tell them “pet pet” when you order, as they do make the food generally a bit more on the mild side to suit western tastes. They have changed ownership recently, but we have eaten there since and the food was just as good. Another bonus, they also have a Thai massage place upstairs above the restaurant!

Vietnam Noodle House – This is one of my regular weekend cheap eats. I can’t say I’ve tried a massive amount of the menu, as I always tend to go here to specifically eat a huge steaming bowl of pho. For the uninitiated, pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup, made from broth filled with slippery rice noodles, thinly sliced meat, and garnished the way you like with your own selection of fresh herbs, chilli and seasonings – perfect comfort food on a cold Melbourne day. The service and atmosphere here aren’t fantastic, but it’s super cheap and the pho is consistently tasty.

Pho at Vietnam Noodle House
Pho at Vietnam Noodle House

Red Pepper – If you’re after an Indian fix in the top end of Melbourne’s CBD, give this place a try. The restaurant itself isn’t super glamorous, but the curries are delicious, and there’s also a really good range for vegetarians. Even though I’m not vegetarian myself, I often find myself ordering the Paneer Kadhai Masala which is really good!

Riva – This is my weekend breakfast go-to place. Tucked away in the Causeway (a laneway just off the Bourke St Mall), it has great food at reasonable prices. They do a great super cheesy omelette, and Ash is rather partial to their eggs benedict. They also have some really delicious burgers for lunch.

Fonda – For some delicious modern Mexican food, head to Fonda at the top end of Flinders Lane. They have an awesome array of Mexican classics with a twist, as well as an extensive drink menu complete with cocktail jugs and a huge range of tequilas. The tortillas there are pressed fresh every day, and the hot sauce there is excellent! They only do booking for large groups, so I ‘d recommend to get there for an early dinner if you don’t want to queue.

Where are some of your favourite places to eat in Melbourne?

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24 Replies to “10 of my favourite places to eat in Melbourne”

  1. Love Asian food 🙂
    What’s your favourite (no bookings) dumping place in Melbourne and why? Just did a review of Fonda in Windsor (Melbourne), check it out and let me know what you think.

    1. My fave no booking dumpling place is probably China Red, they have awesome dumplings for very little cost. If i can’t get in there I go to Shanghai Dumpling House which is also really good. I love Fonda, they are great!

      1. Thanks for the tip! Good blog by the way!

  2. I’ve never been to Melbourne but it seems I’ll have no issue finding some great places to eat when we do go. Thanks for sharing and linking up to #WeekendWanderlust.

    1. Thanks Carmen, let me know if you ever do come to Melbourne!

  3. I always love to discover nice places to eat! It just really is an important part of a city, here in Buenos Aires there are so many good places… it’s overwhelming^^

    1. I know, I love trying new places to eat, and I think it can tell you a lot about a city. Thanks for reading!

  4. I ate lunch at Hutong last Sunday. You’re right – great xiao long bao! I ‘m very partial to a bowl of steaming pho – my favourite in the city is Twee’s Hut in Little Collins St. Their roast pork banh mi is fab too. (Came here via #WeekendWanderLust).

    1. How good is it?! I haven’t tried Twee’s Hut yet, I’ll have to give them a go. Thanks for the recommendation!

  5. YUM! thanks for sharing! I’m saving this for my future not-yet-planned trip to Melbourne!

    1. Thanks Evanne, let me know if you do come here!

  6. Great list – love dumplings!

    1. Thanks for reading – dumplings are the best, aren’t they?!

  7. I love visiting Melbourne. Bookmarking your post for my next trip down as I don’t think I’ve been to any of these places!

    1. Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoy them, and feel free to get in touch when you next come to Melbourne!

  8. We are off to Melbs in a few weeks, so I’m pinning your page ready to go! x

    1. Great, hope its helpful! Let me know if you have any questions 🙂

  9. Saving this for next time I travel to Melbourne, always on the look out for awesome places to eat. Thanks

    1. You’re welcome, hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

  10. I’m a returned Melbourne local and don’t know any of these. Love dumplings though so great to see a few dumpling places featured

    1. Great, hope you enjoy these places as much as I do!

  11. Oh my gosh, such a great selection of places!! We visited “Rice Paper” – a Vietnamese place, last time we were in Melbourne and it was really good!!

    And thanks for linking up with Wanderlust! Our next link up will be on the 3rd December, so mark it in your diary!!

    1. Rice Paper is great too – there’s so many awesome cheap eats in Melbourne, we’re really spoilt for choice! I’ll be sure to remember the next link up, thanks 🙂

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