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Dining out in this foodie town is serious – and seriously fun. Melbourne prides itself on its food and the city's dizzying array of dining options is testimony to its culinary reputation. Book ahead for award-winning fine-dining restaurants, queue up for iconic cheap eats, explore famous eat streets or track down the city's best food trucks. Whatever you do, come to town with an appetite.
A table at Melbourne's most notable restaurants is well worth the wait. Consider critically acclaimed Melbourne dining institutions Attica, Flower Drum or Vue de Monde, or any of the many restaurants listed in The Age Good Food or Australian Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide.
Eat streets and cheap eats
Explore Melbourne one culinary precinct at a time. Go for Italian in Lygon Street, Carlton, Vietnamese in Victoria Street, Richmond, and Lebanese in Sydney Road, Brunswick. Weigh in on the best-dumpling debate in CBD's Chinatown, and find yourself spoilt for choice in Footscray, where Vietnamese and African restaurants sit side by side.
Join throngs of locals at cheap eats institutions across the city – try Richmond's Thy Thy, Flemington's Laksa King and the CBD's Camy Shanghai Dumpling – and hit up social media to follow Melbourne's army of mobile food vans.
Long lunches and late-night haunts
Check out Sunday lunch specials at big-name restaurants or let your good intentions go in a beer garden with gourmet fare.
For late night bites, follow the hospitality crowd into famous Supper Inn, slide into a booth at Choo Choo's at the Toff, or stay up at Cumulus Up. Northside, city or south, wherever you are, you'll find somewhere to sate a late-night appetite.
There are few places more aptly named than Andrew McConnell's Asian eating sensation and its mouthwatering Chinese, Japanese and Korean morsels.
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Think carefully about the friends you'll take to Chin Chin, as you'll be settling in and sharing plates of fresh, spicy Thai food plus plentiful wine.
It's only at the end of a meal at Brunswick Street's Latino eatery Smith & Daughters that you remember that not a scrap of meat has passed your lips.
Like a little mouse you'll be scurrying to scavenge the crumbs of the rich, delectable dishes and fine wines on offer at Carlton's The Town Mouse.
Take in views of Carlton Gardens and sample an elegant menu of shared, seasonal European favourites. Hatted by The Age Good Food Guide.
Bow to the bao for many reasons, including the taste sensation enveloped in a soft steamed bun, the cheap prices, speedy service, and super soymilk.
Start with a brunch burrito and see out the day in the St Kilda courtyard, channelling Cancun with a Corona and fish tacos, or blue corn enchiladas.
Tuck into simple, affordable Spanish tapas and a lean into the bar that’s so well stocked with vermouth you'll have to stay for a rooftop cocktail.
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Immerse yourself in the art of sushi with okamase (chef's selection) from sushi master Koichi Minamishima. This is one for the special-occasion file.
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Turn up your radio, 'cause you're gonna like what you're about to hear. Fresh. Healthy. Tasty. Democratic. Goes great with beer. It's Radio Mexico!
From Movida’s Mykal Batholomew and Longrain chef, Adam D’Sylva, this hatted eatery ticks all the right boxes without taking itself too seriously.
Book early or be left propping up the bar at this busy modern-Italian diner named after a Hungarian film star and set in a disused bank building.
The Harbour Kitchen is one of the most exciting and versatile function venues in Melbourne. Situated right on the waterfront in Docklands, this...
From roti to nasi lemak, Mamak's got your Malaysian street food cravings sorted. And their cheap and cheerful menu will save you a few pennies too.
Gather a gang to get the most yum out of yum cha at this Chinatown stalwart serving Cantonese favourites: try the char siu bao.
You're not really supposed to eat pho beyond breakfast o'clock, but the aromatic broth fits the bill just as well at lunch and dinner, too.
Relax in the well-cushioned interior, let the staff bring you the right amount of food, and embark on a gastronomical trip to the Middle East.
Dig deep into your claypot to discover whatever flavoursome delights the deep blue sea yielded that day, best enjoyed in the ivy-walled courtyard.
Let the good times roll is an exhortation that's hard to resist, especially when Deep South specialties, all-night oysters and absinth are involved.
Enjoy new interpretations of old faves at the big sister of the ever-popular Hanoi Hannah and be a part of the southside Vietnamese revolution.
Find the White Guy Cooks Thai food truck and enjoy Asian hawker food the way it's supposed to be eaten - with friends amid urban hustle and bustle.
This loft-inspired restaurant, hatted by The Age Good Food Guide boasts a drinking bar, an eating bar and regular tables for serious eating.
Namesake of a hip Athens precinct, Gazi dishes up shareable street-style bites and sensational souvlakia with a Mythos, ouzo or amazing cocktail.
Catch local heroes in the upstairs bandroom, making the most of the filling meals and tasty snacks to power you through the infamous 2am live slot.
Housed in a Fitzroy terrace, Matteo's is the share-house that grew up and got sophisticated. There's an Asian edge to the fare, and a fine wine list.
Try the lunch specials or the monthly BYO at the acclaimed Courthouse Hotel, which looks deceptively pub-like despite serving fine French-style fare.
Treat your tastebuds to the tangy flavours of contemporary Northern Chinese cuisine. Dip into yum cha or indulge in the full fine dining experience.
Start your day as you intend to go on with breakfast at Hammer & Tong, then up the ante at lunch and dinner, which scale even more delicious heights.
Get stitched up with modern Cantonese food for dinner after aperitifs in the Indochine-style cocktail bar, finished with a nightcap in the basement.
Experience the feted pedigree of the Flower Drum's almost psychic service and delectable cuisine at the more wallet-friendly Lau's Family Kitchen.
Overlooking the Yarra River in revamped Hamer Hall, this sleek city restaurant and bar offers new-style sushi and classic Japanese cuisine.
Save yourself the trouble of tracking down Melbourne's food trucks and head to the Northcote/Thornbury border where a roster of food trucks gather.
Geoff Lindsay's Dandelion is the recipient of a hat from The Age Good Food Guide and a marvel of modern Vietnamese cuisine in bayside Elwood.
Weekend dining, New Orleans jazz and kids' menus – the guys know the North Fitzroy demographic. Brekky, lunch or evening drinks, it's all you need.
You've met Meatmother, now meet Meatmaiden, a basement den of meat, craft beer and bourbon that takes its prime cuts pretty seriously.
Perch yourself on the riverbank and enjoy the simplicity of riverside life with simple, produce-driven menus and relaxing views at The Boathouse.
Treat the bar of the laidback Fitzroy eatery like it's your local, then swan into the dining room to feast on perfectly executed Italian classics.
St Kilda icon Greasy Joe's has had a makeover. Stop by this bayside hotspot for bespoke cocktails, juicy steaks and a sumptuous range of burgers.
Tastefully decorated to create an authentic, old world bodega atmosphere, San Telmo is famous for its imported 2.5-metre parilla (charcoal grill).
Uncover the provincial life at the top of Swan Street in Richmond, whether it's a cosy Sunday lunch or celebratory drinks on the rooftop terrace.
Combining retro fittings and modern Mediterranean cuisine, this St Kilda institution is a favourite with locals, celebrities and local celebrities.
Savour the delicacies of regional produce at the Crown complex. At No. 8 by John Lawson, seasonal local produce gets the fine-dining treatment.
Choose the Sardinian set menu, made with ingredients from the chef's farm and see what The Age Good Food Guide was raving about.
Start your evening upstairs at Fonda's Atico Bar, or enjoy reimagined Mexican faves while you watch Chapel Street go by from behind the picket fence.
BearBrass Eating & Drinking is located on the banks of the Yarra River at Southgate Restaurant and Shopping Precinct on Southbank with spectacular...
Meatball and Wine Bar's DIY-style menu caters to vegetarians as well as meat lovers. Pair your rich meatball dishes with an organic Italian wine.
Step into the wild west via your local pub and chow down on American classics beneath buffalo skulls, Mexican wrestling masks and Elvis posters.
When it comes to choosing a burger in Melbourne, your decision might just come down to pedigree – of both the distinguished restaurateur and the beef.
Heaven awaits at Hell of the North, the elegant, classic French bistro and bar behind the bright yellow door in Fitzroy. Divine.
Drift off Smith Street and deep into Historical New Orleans at Po’ Boy Quarter, and be amazed by the things that can be stuffed into a hunk of bread.
Let the team behind Coda tempt you with their Indian-inspired menu lauded by both The Age Good Food Guide and Gourmet Traveller.
Discover the magic of Café di Stasio, winner of two hats from The Age Good Food Guide and in Australian Gourmet Traveller's top 30.
Expect barbecued and smoked meats and seafood coupled with Asian sides from this Japanese-Korean barbecue restaurant from the team behind Chin Chin.
Enjoy innovative cuisines as you discover Melbourne's best dining experiences at restaurants celebrated by critics and locals alike.
¡Ay, caramba! Fresh off the tortilla press comes a steady stream of Mexican restaurants that sing in summer and offer escape from the depths of winter.
Follow the aromas of freshly extracted single origin coffee beans down cobblestoned laneways and into laid-back coffee strips for that caffeine buzz.
You don't need a stash of cash to eat well in Melbourne. Treat your tastebuds without testing your credit limit at one of the city's many affordable restaurants.
Craving a curry? Melbourne has many authentic, contemporary and surprising Indian restaurants and grocery shops.
Halal food is available all over Melbourne, with many halal restaurants and shops on Sydney Road, Brunswick.
Melbourne is home to the highest-ranking Australian restaurant on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list: Ben Shewry’s Attica is ranked number 32.
Look out for food trucks across Melbourne.
Get your fill of Mr Burger's simple yet delicious meat - or felafel - between buns in Melbourne's north, south, east and west most days of the week.
Follow that truck! Track down Melbourne's roaming purveyor of fine soft tortillas and dig into meat, fish or vego tacos with a big old pile of guac.
Make sure your Facebook and Twitter accounts are ready for the latest info on Gumbo Kitchen, an LA-style food van serving authentic New Orleans grub.
Bite into a Beatbox burger, wipe Stereo Sauce off your chin and appreciate the fact that burgers taste better when eaten by an inner city roadside.
Indulge in fresh, diverse and bountiful local produce at some of the best places to eat in regional Victoria.
From pinot on the Mornington Peninsula to sparkling in the Macedon Ranges, discover five distinct wine regions within an hour and a half of the city.
See what's available and make instant restaurant reservations at dimmi.com.au or download the iPhone app.
Find an available table and book online at bookarestaurant.com or download the iPhone app.
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