People are always asking me “Murphy, you’re a hip young fella that knows this town like the back of your hand and has an excellent taste in fine dining, can you please provide a list of the best eateries in Melbourne, preferably in the form of a list online, thanks?” And to all of those people I always say the same thing: “Yeah I suppose, when I get around to it, I guess.” So here it is! Enjoy! Or as us food connoisseurs say, bonjour!
Professor Q Misfit’s Weird & Wonderful Pizza Emporium
If you’re sick of your boring run of the mill pizzas, this pizza joint in far east Footscray is the place for you. With wacky concoctions like prawn pizza, pizza with pineapple, and extra cheese pizza (yes, you heard correctly!) this pizzeria may not leave you with satisfaction, but it will leave you with bewilderment, which is a feeling not enough restaurants in Melbourne are providing these days, in my humble opinion.
My hot tip: The margherita pizza might sound like a drink you’d get at a fancy yuppie bar, but it’s actually a satisfactory meal. Bizarre and perplexing sure, but satisfactory!
2015 Themed Diner
I sat down with Stan Henricson, owner and proprietor of the east Kensington 2015 themed diner, 2015 Themed Diner, about his mission, his mindset, and how 2015 Themed Diner came to be. I lost the recordings and was blackout drunk at the time, but I think basically he said he wanted to run a 2015 themed diner.
Whether you’re a fan of milkshakes named after season 26 episodes of The Simpsons, staff being forced to do a dance routine every time Hoops by The Reubens is selected on the jukebox, or a menu that makes numerous references to the movie Daddy’s Home, this diner has excellent parking.
My hot tip: Try the 2016 Elections are Just Around the Corner Sundae.
Arguably the greatest pie shop in north west Fitzroy, the mouth watering pies here will legitimately give you an orgasm. So make sure you order the pie to go, otherwise you’ll have an orgasm in front of the staff and it will be really awkward, as I discovered the hard way. It was an incredibly embarrassing moment and I don’t think I can ever return. Which is a shame, cos they really are pretty decent pies.
My hot tip: When you go there tell them I’m sorry and mention that I gave them a shout out in my blog and that I hope everything got cleaned up OK.
Pho Ho Ho and a Bottle of Rum
We all love pho and we all love rum, so why it took so long for Melbourne’s first ever pho and rum based restaurant to open in May of last year is a bloody mystery. But it’s here now and this beautiful venue in lower south Kew is absolutely amazing. With over three varieties of pho and an incredible four brands of rum on offer (with a fifth rumoured to be in stock for a limited time only in late November 2018), this is the perfect way to spend a chilly Wednesday morning in our great city. Oh also it’s pirate themed and you gotta speak in a pirate voice or they tar and feather you.
My hot tip: Speak in a pirate voice or they will tar and feather you.
The Valerie Cafe
A fantastic cafe in lower east Richmond where everything is based on the classic Steve Winwood track Valerie. All the the meals and drinks are named after it, the entire decor is Valerie inspired, and it’s the only song available on the jukebox.
Popular dishes include the Valerie milkshake, the Valerie BLT, and the Valerie duck flambe.
I had to legally change my name to Valerie in order to be served but it was worth it for that superb Valerie Hot Dog with a side of regular fries (Valerie fries were unavailable that day)
My hot tip: The Valerie Boags Draught
Irish Sam’s Chicken Surplus
This quaint diner in upper west Hawthorn started out as a simple chicken restaurant with just the right amount of chickens. But after the owner Irish Sam (who is actually a Scotsman named Stan) processed an order while inebriated, the restaurant has become not just the best place in Melbourne with too much chicken, but the title of the establishment also now makes sense.
My hot tip: Try the fish.
The Wonky Swan
Everyone loves a Melbourne pub. And this grand little hidden gem in north south Yarraville is the closest you’ll get to the greatest pub in the world. The lovable bar staff serve chicken parmas with a smile, encourage you to chuck a Daryl Braithwaite song on the jukebox, and will cheekily cheer on as you play a game of pool with your mates. There is also a man named Jocko Samuels who walks around screaming obscenities, a severe rat problem, a corpse in the toilet, a staff member who makes racially insensitive comments, a haunted bar tap, a leaky ceiling, a bouncer who punches every third person who enters, a lot of cobwebs, a lot of health and safety problems, and another man called Thommo Henries who wanders around and stabs everyone, but the good definitely outweighs the bad!
My hot tip: Just go there OK, my dad owns the place and really needs this.
Mrs. Lasagne’s French Restaurant
Frog legs, snails, and baguettes: these are just some of the delicacies you’ll find at this upper north west east Collingwood French restaurant. They also have french fries.
Although the elderly titular Spanish woman who has owned and operated the venue since it’s opening on Tuesday last week claims to have never been to France there’s no doubt she has captured the essence of the country.
The waiters all wear berets, there’s a map of France on the wall and Pepe Le Pew cartoons are played on the TV screens at all times. Now if that’s not what a French restaurant should be, then yeah alright, fair enough.
My hot tip: Don’t mention France to the waiters, they hate it.
Pasta Pussycat, Grill Grill!
I needed a ninth one and my mate told me this place is meant to be OK.
My hot tip: The pasta I guess?
So there we have it. Nine of the best and finest dining establishments in this oyster of a town. Go slurp it up guys. Or however you eat oysters. Oysters are a food yeah?