With the breeze in your hair, the sun on your back and cocktail in hand – here are some great places to eat by the water in Melbourne.
Playfully contemporary and unashamedly modern, Akachochin is a nod to the red paper lanterns which hang outside traditional Japanese izakayas, a type of Japanese pub. Tebasaki Gyoza, chicken wings stuffed with chicken gyoza filling, and wagyu beef sashimi with citrus-chilli miso sauce and deep-fried leeks are highlights of the menu.
Share-style is the way to play at Boatbuilders Yard. From oozy buratta with charred nectarine, heirloom tomatoes and watercress salad, to chicken “lollipops” glazed with maple bbq sauce and burnt lime aioli; you’ll never suffer from FOMO again.
Pop into BangPop and you’re guaranteed Thai-inspired hawker meals that pop with spices and aromatics. Each dish is helpfully rated with a spice level out of five for the spice-sensitive, including hearty spicy salads (with ingredients like beef short ribs not leafy puffy lettuce), stir fried noodles and messy soups.
The General Assembly
A buzzing waterside pub with an elegant industrial design, The General Assembly is perfect for a bigger crew if you’re looking for pub classics with a stamp of foodie approval. Desserts are cheekily creative with options like the vanilla ice-cream burger with peanut butter chocolate pretzels, cinnamon churros and raspberry sauce.
Let Meat Market do the hunting while you enjoy locally sourced, beautifully tender dishes. An airy high ceiling, small outdoor bench-tops and wide windows makes for an exceptional dining venue better than your local market. Charcuterie and natural oysters are a must for starters.
Across from Flinders Street station in Hamer Hall, you’ll find vibrant contemporary Japanese restaurant Saké. Choose from an elegant interior or minimalist outdoor seating by the water. Traditional makimono sushi rolls and raw seafood is silky fresh with complimenting additions like sesame, avocado and daikon.
It’s all fine dining at Rosetta Ristorante. From ocean-styled outdoor couches to an extravagant interior featuring chandeliers, plush seats and white-coated waiters, Rosetta promises exquisite Italian fare to complement the views.
The Meat & Wine Co
Floor to ceiling windows, luscious navy carpet and warm timber gives The Meat & Wine Co an effortlessly elegant look. Leather chairs and rustic wood is a nod to the largely American barbeque menu. If you’re sitting alongside big eaters, the ribs platter with a selection of sticky, tender beef, lamb and pork ribs is a must. Mix and match premium beef with bright sauces like black garlic butter or crumbled King Island blue cheese.
Rockpool Bar & Grill
An institution on Southbank, Neil Perry’s Rockpool Bar & Grill has been serving quality North American-inspired dishes made from the best locally sourced produce. Premium beef choices include the 60-month old grass fed rib-eye on the bone, or 9+ marble wagyu. Creamy, balanced pastas are another highlight on the menu, with expertly crafted dishes like the sautéed abalone, king brown mushrooms and bottarga with maltagliati.
Spice adverse foodies beware. While Spice Temple‘s Chinese-inspired menu boasts milder options, it’s the tongue-burning dishes which really shine. From mud crab fried with four chillies to rock flathead drowning in heaven-facing chilli and Sichuan peppercorn – you won’t find your stock-standard Cantonese fare at Spice Temple.
A middle-eastern haven, Mama Rumaan caters for a range of dietary needs. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free friendly dishes are scattered throughout the decadent menu. Think marinated lamb tekka and fragrant masgouf with fish fillets, coriander, garlic, tomato, capsicum, fresh chilli and saffron rice.
Spanish tapas abounds at Bar Nacional. Housed in a jaw-dropping interior featuring a geometric bar, industrial beaming and long, shared-style bar tables, Bar Nacional boasts a breakfast, business lunch and tapas menu. They’ve got all your meals sorted.
A New York-inspired bar, the top-quality cocktail menu at Alumbra is complemented with American-style street eats like hand cut chips with caeser aioli. Choose between the Bad Dog with a BBQ beef hot dog, smoked cheddar and vodka tomato relish or New York City hot grills like the twice cooked lamb ribs with New Orleans sweet onion relish and red slaw.
Proudly old-school and unwaveringly fresh, Saluministi isn’t your run-of-the-mill sandwich shop. Toasty bread including ciabatta encase flavour-bursting ingredients like grilled pork and fennel sausage, free range slow roasted pork or fried calamari with a range of veggies, cheeses and sauces. With breakfast sandwiches, cannoli and Italian semi-frozen granita, Saluministi warrants a visit to Docklands every day.
With the motto ‘Pizza is sexy’, it’s safe to say there’s no way to go wrong at A25. Known for their innovative bases, choices include matcha green tea, squid-ink as well as gluten-free. Choose between combinations like the corny chick (it’s confit chicken), ‘porkypine’ with grilled pineapple and the ‘naughty girl’.