Suburbs that define the Melbourne food scene
Melbourne’s food scene is as eclectic as they come. With a strong history of immigration, pockets of Melbourne have become synonymous with the communities that settled there and the food they serve in their restaurants and cafes. Others suburbs have developed their food identities to reflect different types of urban culture seen on their streets. Wherever it comes from, in these five Melbourne suburbs there is always something interesting going on.
Lying just 5km west of the city, Footscray was for many years overlooked by many of Melbourne’s foodies, but not anymore. The opening of quality gastro pubs and hip cafes such as Rudimentary and Footscray Miling Station have attracted people from all over the city to the suburb. These new places have also had the effect of drawing more attention to Footscray’s quality array of Vietnamese, Indian, Ethiopian, Chinese and Malaysian restaurants. Indian dosa, Malaysian roti bread, and Vietnamese pho and banh mee being particular favourites with locals and visitors.
Lying Box Hill, approximately 20 kilometres east of the city centre, is fast taking it to China Town as serving the best Chinese food in Melbourne. In fact, Box Hill features styles of Chinese cooking, such as Shaanxi, previously unheard of in Melbourne. With prices that will not break the bank, many Melbournians are flocking to the suburb to sample the food of some impressive establishments like Roast Duck Inn and Shaanxi-Style Restaurant.
South Yarra long been Melbourne’s centre of French cuisine. Restaurants like France-Soir, Bistro Gitan and Entrecôte are famed for serving some of Melbourne’s most delicious and authentic French food. In addition to South Yarra’s French bistros, the suburb also has its fair share of glamorous French-styled patisseries, such as Zumbo, Al La Folie Patisserie, Eugenie French Cake Shop and French Fantasies.
Collingwood (Pictured above)
The Collingwood food scene is built around Smith Street, and while not too long ago it didn’t amount to much it has fast become Melbourne’s home for the new, snappily presented, on-trend food. Pulled pork, tacos, sliders, ramen, burgers, fried chicken, over the years Smith St’s been at the forefront of all these food fashions. However, while it has catered to an eager audience always on the lookout for something new, it also has built up a more stable identity through its abundance of high-quality Japanese restaurants and more high-end restaurants like Huxtable, Saint Crispin and Lee Ho Fook.
While many Melbourne suburbs host exciting and innovative restaurants and eateries, the heart of Melbourne’s food scene remains the city centre. The city has gone through a food boom in recent years with now more cafes, takeaway outlets, restaurants and pubs present than retailers in the City of Melbourne. This means in every block you’ll find polished establishments proudly enriching the city’s gastronomic landscape. Though in typical Melbourne style many are hidden upon a rooftop or down a secluded laneway. But don’t be put off by the chase, even if you get completely lost you can’t really go wrong.