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What Are The Most Unique, Must-Do Melbourne Food Experiences?

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    Some people think that Melbourne is Australia's best city for eating. This culinary epicentre is more than just a haven for fine dining; it also features a wide variety of hip pubs and interesting places to eat.

    Hidden cocktail lounges and rooftop dinners sit alongside laneway saloons and floating feasts, upscale restaurants and casual eateries, and gourmet grills.

    Even better, RACV members can save money by booking direct through RACV Attraction Tickets, which is affiliated with many of the most interesting locations. If you're feeling hungry, give in to that urge.

    Australia's food culture is a fantastic blend of farm-to-table & freshly caught seafood, indigenous products, creative food festivals, and award-winning restaurants that are pushing the boundaries of culinary innovation.

    While we embrace new flavours and cuisines with an open mind and a love of travel, we also hold true the our roots and appreciate a nice barbeque and a simple road trip snack. Hence, from humble meat pies to five-star dining, here are our top recommendations for Australian culinary adventures (and yes, vegemite is on the list).

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    Melbourne's Most Unusual, Must-Do Food Experiences

    Despite its notoriety, Melbourne has emerged as a haven for foodies, and the city offers a wide variety of interesting places to eat. A quick tour of a few of the more famous ones is provided below.

    Chin Chin

    That wouldn't be a comprehensive list of the city's best restaurants if one of the culinary game-changers wasn't included.

    Chin Chin, located in the heart of Melbourne's famous dining street, Flinders Lane, first opened its doors in 2011 and has since become a local institution, drawing in crowds of foodies eager to try its Southeast Asian cuisine nearly a decade after it first opened. Positive spin: in 2021, thanks to a pandemic, reservations for groups of fewer than 10 will be accepted.

    Witches In Britches Theatre Restaurant

    A night with Witches and Britches is the best possible reason to just let your hair loose and enjoy yourself with good food and hilarious company.

    Get your fill on slow-cooked mutton, LOLs (and some delectable chocolate brownie), then head down to the dungeons for a crazy cocktail at this wicked good night out, which also includes a three-course meal and a two-hour standup comedy show.

    Lui Bar 

    Among the many delicious things to do in Melbourne, a trip to a 55th floor of a Rialto Tower for a glass of champagne and some little sausage rolls is a must. Like its chic and prestigious sibling, Vue du Monde, Lui Bar, located in Melbourne, Australia, provides diners with unparalleled panoramas of the city's illustrious cityscape as well as an exquisite dining experience.

    But First, Coffee

    In Australia, we takes our coffee very seriously. Even while Australia as a whole is a great place to have a cup of joe, the coffee scene in Melbourne is unparalleled. Melbourne is home to some of the most forward-thinking coffee roasters and baristas in the world, and for good reason: the city's coffee is world-renowned.

    The menus of all good cafes feature a wide variety of coffee drinks, from espresso to lattes, and often even coffee cupping events (or tastings). Exactly how then do you pick your battles? To get your milk fix, go for a flat white, cappuccino, or latte, and if you like your coffee black, go for a long black, cappuccino, or pour over.

    Brunch Like An Aussie

    Every cafe worthy of the name serves brunch on the weekends, and it's a well-known fact that Australians enjoy brunch. But there are few Aussie standards you shouldn't miss when reading a menu.

    The first is the notorious smashed avocado on toast, which can range from fresh avo with lemon to combos of feta, beetroot humus, dukkah, walnuts, lemon myrtle, or roasted tomatoes (often cited as the reasons young Australians can't save for a home deposit).

    Toast with vegemite is a must for any traditional Australian brunch, along with corn fritters, pastured eggs cooked whichever you prefer, ricotta pancakes, and crispy bacon.

    Josie Bones — Hot To Trot

    Famous for its selection of over 250 regional and international beers, Josie Bones is located at 98 Smith Street in Collingwood.

    On the menu, you can get grilled duck hearts in cumquat and avocado salsa, braised beef cheeks for 12 hours, master stock pig's aunch spring rolls with mandarin salad, and rolled pig's heads on sauce gribiche and crackling, among other unusual dishes.

    Pair these gruesome treats with a tasty malt beverage. In the 2011 Bartender Magazine Bar Awards, Josie Bones was crowned Australia's Best Niche Beer Venue.

    Choo Choos At Curtin House

    Weekend alone? The Toff in Town, a live music institution in Melbourne, and a Southeast Asian–inspired restaurant with a cosy, intimate vibe can both be found on the second level of the historical city Curtin House.

    Relax in a booth the size of a standard bathroom and ring the bell to call for service. It's open from 5 pm on Thursdays to Saturdays and serves delicious food in a stylish setting.

    Try Aussie Bushtucker

    There are many fantastic opportunities to honour Australia's First Nations culinary tradition, whether at a cafe or on a guided tour. Traditional Indigenous cuisine (often known as "bush tucker") is an Australian culinary must-do.

    You can choose a dining experience that features natural Australian foods like Warrigal greens, kangaroos, emu, and crocodile, or you can take a guided tour to learn about the history & uses of plants like quandong, Sutton's plum, finger lime, and lemon myrtle.

    Lentil As Anything — A Restaurant With A Conscience

    Lentil as Anything stands out from the crowd since it offers a wide variety of vegan and vegetarian cuisine at completely flexible rates. In its place is the option for diners to set their own prices based on how much they value the meal.

    Just over 10 years ago, in St. Kilda, Lentil as Anything began as a non-profit company and has now expanded to three other locations in Melbourne. Volunteers, including many recent immigrants and refugees, run the café, which uses donated food and supplies from area businesses.

    Hearty food at this eatery range from the familiar (lentil burgers, vegan lasagne) to the enticingly foreign (Sri Lankan pumpkin curry, Vietnamese salad). The eatery reinvests its earnings into local initiatives that aid refugees and migrants.

    Dine At An Award-Winning Restaurant

    Australia is home to a number of the world's best restaurants and most innovative chefs. Farm-to-table and ocean-to-plate sustainable dining concepts are popular at many restaurants (like Brae in Victoria). The trend among fine-dining kitchens to use indigenous products is giving Australia's famed fresh food and cutting-edge dishes a uniquely Australian spin.

    If you're looking for fine dining, go no further; several of our establishments, including Sydney's Attica and Quay, have been featured multiple times just On World's 50 Best Restaurants list.

    Chill On Ice Lounge And Ski Lodge — A Frosty Vibe

    Visit Chill on Ice Lounge & Ski Lodge for an Antarctic experience in the heart of Melbourne. Fifty tonnes of ice were used to create anything from the bar and sofa to the decorations and glasses.

    Modern lighting effects and a snowstorm created by fans add to the ambience of the space. In addition to the arctic-themed beverages and finger foods, all visitors are also given thick jackets, gloves, and boots.

    Those who are eager to warm up can do so at the neighbouring Ski Resort, where they will enjoy a meal of Tapas while gazing out at the Yarra.

    Ponyfish Island 

    A bar in the form of a ship, located beneath a bridge so over Yarra? Naturally, given that we are in Melbourne, there is. Ponyfish Island is a sun-drenched drink spot that, if you squint just so, might nearly pass for a yacht in the Mediterranean, and it's just a few flights of stairs down from the pedestrian bridge connecting Flinders St and Southbank (just kidding).

    Take in the sights of Thames and the glittering city skyline while snacking on some chilli peanuts & wagyu beef dumplings.

    Indulge In The Ultimate Road-Trip Snack

    One of the best ways to take in Australia's breathtaking landscape is by road trip, and what's a trip without a few tasty snacks? First, there are the heartier options, such as a sausage roll, Chiko Roll (a snacking icon of the 1970s), or a traditional Australian pie (many famous savoury pies are worth creating an entire road trip itinerary around).

    There are also many different kinds of chips (Twisties and Cheezels), candies (Natural Confectionery Co.), and ice cream flavours (Golden Gaytime, Paddle Knock, and Bubble O Bill) to choose from as between-meal snacks.

    Zingara Cucina — An Underground Adventure

    Some people don't even believe this restaurant exists because of how hidden it is. In Italian, Zingara Cucina means "Gypsy Kitchen," but the restaurant is constantly moving around to different spots.

    "From parking areas to laneways, bridges, but also galleries — Zingara Food is a fine dining encounter housed throughout random, obscure places," it says on their website. About three years ago, Zingara began as a test in a Melbourne apartment.

    The website advertises "deliciously creative casa-linga" fare, but the restaurant likely offers more than that, as it now collaborates with a number of different chefs and caterers. You're in for a shock either way.

    Catch-And-Eat Your Seafood

    Australia's municipal (and very fresh) fish can be enjoyed in a variety of spectacular ways. There's spearing mud-crabs and cooking them over an open flame, catching rock lobsters and throwing them on the grill, and fishing for local barramundi, snapper, and blue mackerel, to name just a few.

    If you'd rather not fish for yourself, you can still partake in a uniquely Australian tradition by ordering fish and chips (try the barramundi) from a beachside vendor.

    Naked For Satan — Devilicious

    It would be foolish to pass by a restaurant with such an enticing name and not enter. The bar Naked for Satan is worth checking out for more than just its wide selection of vodka and pintxos (the Basque equivalent of Tapas).

    Salami, smoked salmon, anchovies, olives, and cheeses can be enjoyed on toothpick-held slices of baguette (take your toothpicks to the register at the end of the night to work out the bill).

    The vintage posters of scantily clad women and men in second place to the copper distillery equipment as the most eye-catching feature of the decor. There is a myth that during the Great Depression, a Russian man named Leon Satanovich, or Satan for short, ran a moonshine still out of this very building.

    Since he did his job in his undies during the hot summer months, customers came up with the slogan "Let's get shirtless for Satan" as a passcode to get their hands on a cold one.

    Taste Iconic Australian Wines

    Across its 65 wine-producing regions, Australia is home to more than 2,460 vineyards. They can be found in convenient driving distance from major cities, in the midst of lush countryside, or scattered along the coast.

    There is a wide variety of wine styles and vintages because each region has its own unique climate and soil. Some of the most famous Australian grapes are the Grange from Penfolds, the Hill of Grace from Henschke, the Vanya from Cullen Wines, and the Derelict Vineyard Grenache from d'Arenberg.

    Arbory Afloat

    Relax with a long lunch on Melbourne's world's biggest floating outdoor bar and restaurant Arbory Afloat. An Australian beach house with a built-in pool, cabanas, and daybeds. The menu is inspired by summer and features items such as lobster spaghetti, chicken and gravy sandwiches, and fresh-made wood-fired pizzas.

    The Duke Of Wellington 

    Visit Melbourne's oldest pub, The Duke of Wellington, for a taste of the city's past. Since 1850, this historic hotel has stood at the intersection of Flinders but also Russell streets, and in 1853, the first beer flowed from its taps.

    The exterior hasn't changed, but the inside has been given a complete makeover. The rooftop serves up some of the city's best pub grub, including maple as well as buffalo fried chicken, caesar salads, and the classic chicken parm, in addition to its jaw-dropping views.

    Attend A Food Festival

    Australia is fond of holding festivals to honour its bounty, from those highlighting regional cuisine to those specialising in craft beers. There is no greater event to mark on your calendar if you consider yourself a foodie than a food festival, where you can indulge in the best of the local fare and discover the secrets of a region's culinary reputation.

    Truffles are the subject of a yearly festival in Canberra. South Australia is famous for its high-quality wines, and Margaret River is a popular vacation spot thanks to its gourmet restaurants and abundance of fresh, locally-grown produce.

    Titanic Theatre Restaurant — The Last Supper

    Travel back in time to April 1912 and reflect on the doomed maiden voyage of the Titanic just at Titanic Theatre Restaurant. Pick between the posh First Class dining room or the more relaxed Steerage Class. Alternately, the opulent Captain's Table is where you should go if you want to be pampered with silver service.

    In the evening, after passengers have boarded the "practically sea worthy" ship and dinner has been served, roving musicians perform on deck as the Titanic crosses the Atlantic.

    As the ship plummets to the depths of the ocean, the crew hears ice warnings. Luckily, the steamship Carpathia comes just in time to save everyone and take them to the clubs of New York. Best wishes on your journey!

    Dinner In The Sky — An Evening Of Suspense

    The international phenomenon that is "Dinner in the Sky" has recently spread to Melbourne. To simplify a complex tale, the thrilling experience entails a dining table being hoisted by a crane to a height of 50 metres.

    Twenty-two diners and three hosts (a waiter, a chef, and an entertainer) can fit at the suspended table. This isn't a permanent eatery, but if you've got the dough, you can reserve a table here.

    Breakfasts, martinis, meetings, and even weddings in the sky are just some of the events that Events in the Sky, which began in Belgium throughout 2007, can now accommodate.

    Have A Bbq (Anywhere, Any Time)

    There is a good reason why barbeques are almost universally associated with Australia. With good friends and delicious food, we enjoy spending time in the fresh air as much as possible. Whether you're at the beach, the park, or in your own backyard, a BBQ with friends and some of Australia's finest meats and seafood is right around the corner. Some of our best restaurants (including the James Beard Award–winning Firedoor) have adopted the BBQ tradition because their chefs enjoy preparing fresh, local ingredients in this way.

    Pearl — iPad Heaven

    The highly regarded restaurant Pearl in Melbourne is one of the first in the globe to offer its wine list and menus exclusively through the use of an iPad. The restaurant's modern dishes and comprehensive wine list, complete with tasting annotations, information about winemaker but also vintage, and nutrition pairing suggestions, are all available on the user-friendly digital menu.

    Since it has been around for over a decade, Pearl is regarded as one of city's most reputable eateries, and even those who aren't particularly interested in technology can enjoy the restaurant's creative and award-winning cuisine.

    After The Tears — Raise A Glass

    After the Tears serves traditional Polish fare like borsch (beetroot soup), goulash (beef stew), and pierogi (dumplings), but its extensive vodka list is what really sets it apart. Over a hundred items, many of which are showcased at the backlit tableau, may leave you speechless at this ambiance-rich establishment.

    You can pick from many different varieties of vodka, including those that are clear, infused, nutty, fruity, creamy, or sweet. Eastern but also Bohemian (to be diluted with water) and French absinthes are also available at the bar. The restaurant is lit romantically by candles and is furnished with antique lams, gold leaf mirrors, and magnificent paintings.

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    Roller Door Café — A Hidden Gem

    The tiny Roller Door Café is a welcome addition to Melbourne's snooty café circuit, located between an auto-wrecker as well as the back of the Railway Hotel. The unassuming coffee shop is distinguished by coffee-themed street art and a small outdoor seating area.

    The organic wraps, sandwiches, side dishes, and gourmet pies at the Roller Door Cafe are all made with fair trade coffee. The rooftop beehive and herb-filled courtyard provide some of the café's fresh produce. Unfortunately, Roller Door Café is really only serving breakfast and lunch at the moment.


    Melbourne has become a popular destination for those who appreciate fine cuisine, as it is home to a vast range of unique restaurants. Here are some of our favourite things to do in Australia, from camping to dining (and yes, vegemite is on the list). Among Melbourne, Australia's many great watering holes, you'll find Lui Bar, Vue du Monde, and Josie Bones. Beautiful views of the city and a delectable menu are what you can expect to find at Lui Bar. You may find a wide range of coffee beverages, from espresso to lattes, on the menus of every decent cafe.

    A number of the world's finest chefs and most forward-thinking restaurants may be found in Australia. The latest culinary trend is putting an Australian touch on dishes by incorporating local ingredients. Customers at Lentil As Anything are encouraged to name their own prices for their meals. What's this, a ship-shaped pub tucked away under the Yarra River bridge? Although its extensive vodka and pintxos menu is reason enough to check out Naked for Satan, there's more to this bar than meets the eye.

    You can dine and drink al fresco in style at Arbory Afloat, the largest floating restaurant and bar in the world. The Grange from Penfolds and the Hill of Grace from Henschke are two of the most well-known varieties of grapes grown in Australia. An exciting part of the "Dining in the Sky" experience is watching as a crane lifts a table to a height of fifty metres. Borsch (beetroot soup), goulash (beef stew), and pierogi (dumplings) are just some of the classic Polish dishes available at After the Tears (dumplings). The restaurant's huge selection of vodka is what makes it stand out. The Roller Door Café, despite its diminutive size, is a great addition to Melbourne's posh coffee scene.

    Content Summary

    1. Melbourne has been called the "best city in Australia for eating" by some.
    2. More than just a sanctuary for excellent dining, this culinary epicentre also boasts a vast selection of trendy taverns and exciting eateries.
    3. To sweeten the deal, RACV members can save money by booking directly through RACV Attraction Tickets, which has partnerships with many of the best tourist spots.
    4. Farm-to-table and freshly caught seafood, indigenous goods, unique food festivals, and award-winning restaurants that are on the cutting edge of culinary innovation all contribute to Australia's wonderful food culture.
    5. To that aim, we've compiled a list of the best places in Australia to indulge in a wide range of gastronomic delights, from the most basic meat pies to the most refined five-star restaurants (and yes, vegemite is on the list).
    6. The Strangest, Most Unique, and Absolutely Essential Dining Opportunities in Melbourne Despite its renown, Melbourne has become a paradise for foodies, with a rich selection of unique restaurants.
    7. It's a cinch If one of the city's culinary game-changers weren't included, the list wouldn't be complete.
    8. Restaurant and Theatre Featuring Witches in Broomsticks You don't need an excuse to let your hair down and have a wonderful time with some amusing people and delicious food than a night with Witches and Britches.
    9. Melbourne, Australia's Lui Bar, like its stylish and distinguished brother Vue du Monde, offers guests breathtaking views of the city's illustrious skyline and an outstanding dining experience.
    10. While you can get a good cup of coffee pretty much anywhere in Australia, the situation in Melbourne is unrivalled.
    11. For good reason, Melbourne is known for its excellent coffee, and the city is home to some of the most innovative coffee roasters and baristas in the industry.
    12. Espresso, lattes, and other coffee beverages, and sometimes even coffee cupping events, can be found on the menus of any decent coffee shops (or tastings).
    13. The Australian Way to Brunch It's common knowledge that Australians love brunch, so it's no surprise that on Saturdays and Sundays, every respectable cafe serves it.
    14. Australia is a great option, so why not give it a go Bushtucker Whether at a cafe or on a guided tour, there are numerous excellent ways to pay tribute to Australia's First Nations culinary legacy.
    15. Australian travellers should make time to try bush tucker, the common name for the country's traditional Indigenous cuisine.
    16. Vegan Restaurant Serving Hearty Lentil Dishes Lentil as Anything is unique among its competitors since it provides vegan and vegetarian options for a wide price range.
    17. Lentil as Anything started as a non-profit in St. Kilda just over a decade ago, and it has now spread to three more Melbourne sites.
    18. The restaurant donates a portion of its profits to local groups that provide services to refugees and immigrants.
    19. Come Enjoy Dinner at a Multiple-Award Winning Restaurant Numerous internationally acclaimed restaurants and cutting-edge culinary minds may be found in Australia.
    20. Sustainable dining themes like "farm-to-table" or "ocean-to-plate" are trending at many restaurants (like Brae in Victoria).
    21. Using local ingredients is becoming increasingly popular in Australia's top restaurants, providing the country's already-renowned fresh produce and innovative cuisine a distinctively local flavour.
    22. Several of our restaurants, such as Sydney's Attica and Quay, have been recognised multiple times on the list of the world's best eateries.
    23. The atmosphere is enhanced by the use of contemporary lighting effects and a snowstorm generated by fans.
    24. All guests are provided with warm coats, mittens, and boots to go along with the arctic-themed drinks and appetisers.
    25. If you're feeling chilly, head to the neighbouring Ski Resort for a supper of Tapas and a view of the Yarra to warm yourself.
    26. It's only a few flights of stairs down from the pedestrian bridge between Flinders St and Southbank to Ponyfish Island, a sun-drenched drinking location that, if you squint just right, might almost pass for a yacht in the Mediterranean (just kidding).
    27. Enjoy some chilli peanuts and wagyu beef dumplings while you take in the river Thames and the dazzling cityscape.
    28. Enjoy the Best Snack for Any Car Trip A road trip is a great way to see the sights of Australia, and what's a vacation without some nice snacks?
    29. The first group consists of the heartier foods, such as a sausage roll, Chiko Roll (a snacking icon of the 1970s), or a traditional Australian pie (many famous savoury pies are worth creating an entire road trip itinerary around).
    30. A Subterranean Cooking Experience at Zingara Cucina A lot of people don't think this restaurant is real because of how difficult it is to find.
    31. While its name, Zingara Cucina, translates to "Gypsy Kitchen" in Italian, the eatery is notoriously nomadic ( Zingara was initially developed as a proof of concept in a Melbourne apartment around three years ago.
    32. Fish and chips (try the barramundi) from a beachside seller is a great alternative to catching your own fish, and it's a fun way to experience a distinctly Australian tradition.
    33. Exposed and Devilishly Dedicated to Satan No one with any sense would walk past a restaurant with a name like that and not go in.
    34. Naked for Satan is a great place to visit for more than simply the vodka and pintxos they offer (the Basque equivalent of Tapas).
    35. Taste Iconic Australian Wines Across its 65 wine-producing areas, Australia is home to more than 2,460 vineyards.
    36. There is a broad diversity of wine types and vintages because each region has its own unique climate and soil.
    37. Arbory Afloat Melbourne is home to the largest floating outdoor bar and restaurant in the world, Arbory Afloat, where you can have a leisurely lunch while taking in the city's beautiful surroundings.
    38. It's an Australian beach house complete with a swimming pool, cabanas, and daybeds.
    39. Attend This is a Food Festival To celebrate its bountiful harvest, Australia frequently hosts festivals dedicated to anything from regional food to artisanal beer.
    40. If you consider yourself a foodie, there is no more important event to put on your calendar than a food festival, where you may sample the finest examples of the local cuisine and learn the trade secrets behind a region's acclaimed culinary reputation.
    41. Margaret River in South Australia is a popular tourist destination because of the high quality of its restaurants and the abundance of locally farmed food available there.
    42. "The Last Supper" at Titanic Theatre's Restaurant At Titanic Theatre Restaurant, you may imagine yourself in April 1912, on the ill-fated maiden voyage of the Titanic.
    43. An Evening of Suspense at Dinner in the Clouds As part of its global expansion, "Dinner in the Sky" has lately arrived in Melbourne.
    44. Your next BBQ with friends and some of Australia's finest meats and seafood is just around the corner, whether you're at the beach, the park, or in your own garden.
    45. Since many of our top chefs find that barbecuing is the ideal way to showcase seasonal, locally sourced ingredients, several of our finest dining establishments have taken up the practise.
    46. Pearl — The iPad's Paradise One of the first restaurants in the world to offer its wine list and menus completely through the use of an iPad is Melbourne's highly renowned Pearl.
    47. Over its more than a decade in business, Pearl has earned a reputation as one of the city's finest restaurants, and its inventive, award-winning fare has attracted patrons who aren't particularly tech-savvy.
    48. Raise a glass and dry your eyes after you've shed your tears. Traditional Polish dishes are available at After the Tears, such as borsch (beetroot soup), goulash (beef stew), and pierogi (dumplings, a type of dumpling).
    49. The Roller Door Café: An Undiscovered Treasure Its location between an auto-wrecker and the back of the Railway Hotel makes the Roller Door Café a welcome addition to Melbourne's snobbish café circuit.
    50. Fair trade coffee is used in all of Roller Door Cafe's organic wraps, sandwiches, sides, and gourmet pies.

    FAQs About Unique Food Experiences

    These are Melbourne's most unusual foodie experiences, from tramcars to suspended tables, underwater events, and theatrical dinners. The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant is an elegant dining experience unique to Melbourne.

    If you're looking for unique experiences, amazing food and weird things to do in Melbourne, you've come to the right place. Not many cities cater to artists, foodies, outdoor enthusiasts, hipsters, sports fanatics and culture hunters… but quirky Melbourne has it all!

    Australia has an exciting array of native ingredients and a food culture that is constantly evolving, as international dishes are reimagined and adapted by the local cuisine. So not only can you indulge in unique flavours, but you can enjoy them in one-of-a-kind surroundings.

    The key factors to positive restaurant experiences are good service, good value, cleanliness and high-quality food.
    There is no authentic Melbourne dish or cuisine. Rather, the city's food options are limitless because it is a multicultural melting pot. Food is a portal into culture, and Melbourne's vibrant immigration history remains at the forefront of its culture partly because of its undeniably international cuisine.
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