Melbourne is Australia’s second most popular city with all sorts of merriment happening to keep tourists entertained and well fed due to its array of restaurants, events and nightlife. This eclectic city boasts numerous luxury dining options all over the city to suit a plethora of tastes. For foodies seeking to splash out on an unforgettable dining experience, Melbourne is well worth a cheeky visit.
Located on Gertrude Street in feisty Fitzroy, Cutler and Co has fervent food-lovers flocking through its slinky doors most nights of the week. Renowned chef Andrew McConell brings joy to even the fussiest eaters with the culinary creations served in his flagship fine dining restaurant. The eatery is complete with a swanky open kitchen to let diners in on the cooking action and a chic dining room created by the renowned designer Iva Foschia.
In addition to exquisite classics such as roasted pigeon and tender suckling pig, Cutler and Co also has an enticing bar menu with a plethora of seafood snacks. Think fluffy mini donuts with crème fraise and tastebud tantalising salmon roe. The restaurant picked up the Time Out Best Fine Dining Restaurant award in 2017, and is highly regarded as one of Melbourne’s top places to eat.
The newest fine dining restaurant to make the Melbourne gastro hot list is IDES, nestled away in Collingwood on Smith Street. Australian chef and owner Peter Gunn makes modern Australian dishes in his own zany style and creates six-course taster menus with spontaneous dish changes to keep everything exciting.
Matteo’s on Bruzwick Street in North Fitzroy provides some serious local competition. This restaurant is the epitome of class and sophistication, not only with its appearance and design, but also because of the almost otherworldly food. The Asian-European fusion menu is always perfectly balanced, with strong and exotic flavours encapsulating the eccentric and luxurious atmosphere of Matteo’s. A seasonal a la carte menu is available (with dishes like lemon chicken), as well as five-course taster meals.
If you’re a laid back type partial to more of a casual feel, as well as a spot of relaxed entertainment after your dinner (but still expect exceptional food), Bistro Guillaume is a solid option. Located on the Crown Riverwalk, the bistro serves traditional French classics, including duck confit, colourful salads and steaks cooked by Australia’s acclaimed chef Guillaume Brahimi. Lucky diners can also enjoy their meal al-fresco, right on the banks of the scenic Yarra river.
Bistro Guillaume is situated within the Crown Casino complex – one of Australia’s largest gaming complexes and home to hundreds of casino classics and poker games, including the World Series of Poker, the Asia-Pacific Series and the Aussie Millions. Casual players can also find oodles of fun on and off the tables at the Crown, with food, gaming machines and live music for those who fancy an impromptu jig.
Middle Eastern food aficionados will adore Maha – a quaint yet glam restaurant residing in the city’s central business district where diners can enjoy two, four, five or even six course set menus full of fabulous spice and flavour. Tempting dishes of chemin-cooked swordfish and 12-hour slow-roasted lamb with pickled radish and harissa are must-haves as are the alluring veggie and vegan options.
For Japanese fine dining, try the recently-renovated Minamishima, which features world-class chefs delivering a full-on extravagant dining experience with rampant energy and enthusiasm. The restaurant is known for its live sushi-making – said to be the best in Melbourne, and separate stylish dining room exclusively for hot food. The buttery black cod has been known to make grown men weep with joy.
Boasting maybe the best view to dine by in the whole of Melbourne, Vue De Monde is located in the city’s bustling Collins Street. Located on the 55th floor of this epic building, this iconic fine dining restaurant offers mesmerising vistas for as far as the eye can see. Immaculately dressed guests savour culinary gems such as truffle risotto and dry aged duck roasted with leatherwood honey, as well as more “adventurous” options such as Kangaroo adorned with fermented capsicum. Well, when in Rome…
Featured image: Minimashima