Melbourne’s Top Rated Restaurants: Part 2

Melbourne has a large number of top rated restaurants.  Many of the genuinely best restaurants appear in many sources, however sometimes you can find places on these lists that aren’t necessarily the best.

Urbanspoon, for example, contains a very extensive list, and is used by many people to decide where to eat, however a restaurant’s ranking can be heavily influenced by its popularity. This means that you’ll see restaurants that are in the tourist guides, or that have a big reputation appearing quite high on the list.  Also, people tend to be quite generous in their rankings, which means places that aren’t necessarily that good can have quite a high score.

Overall, these guides do serves as a good starting point, however further research should be done before making a decision. I’ve had a look at the list and have written a short paragraph or two on each of the places on there that I’ve eaten at but haven’t reviewed elsewhere to provide you with some guidance.

Click here for Part 1 of my Melbourne’s Top Rated Restaurants guide.

The Hardware Societe

It seems that so many of the great breakfast venues in Melbourne these days are opening up outside of the CBD. It’s nice when something that really is at the top of its game opens up in the CBD.

The Hardware Societe offers really great French and Spanish inspired breakfasts. The ingredients are fresh, local and always cooked just right. The pastries and cakes (especially the macarons) are a highlight and the coffee is from Proud Mary. Well worth your consideration if you’re in the area, but expect a bit of a wait as it gets very busy.

The Hardware Societe

118-120 Hardware Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9078 5992
Email:            n/a
Website:        n/a

Open
Mon – Fri:    7:00am to 3:00pm
Sat – Sun:    8:30am to 2:00pm

The Hardware Societe on Urbanspoon

Andrew’s Hamburgers

Andrew’s has a real cult following in Melbourne, and it’s been around for a long time – well before the burger fad kicked off in Melbourne. Since 1939 in fact.

The burgers are very tasty, full of decent ingredients, and really good value for money. Beef, chicken, steak and vegetarian options are available.

In this day and age or artisan, complex burgers, sometimes a traditional, good quality “old school” burger taste is just what’s required to hit the spot.

Andrew’s Hamburgers

144 Birdport Street
Albert Park
Victoria 3206
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9690 2126
Email:            n/a
Website:        http://andrewshamburgers.com.au/

Open
Mon – Sat: 11:30am to 3:00pm; 4:30pm to 9:00pm

Andrew's Hamburgers on Urbanspoon

Three Bags Full

Three Bags Full is one of the better options for breakfast and lunch in Abbotsford. The coffee is excellent and, the food is very decent and offers the usual range of solid breakfast and lunch options. There’s something about the bacon here that really stands out, and all of the produce is local and fresh, with as much of the produce as possible being made on-site.

Service can be hit and miss at time, especially when it gets busy on the weekends, but is generally good.

Three Bags Full

60 Nicholson Street
Abbotsford
Victoria 3067
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9421 2732
Email:            info@threebagsfullcafe.com.au
Website:        http://threebagsfullcafe.com.au/

Open
Mon – Fri:  7:00am to 5:00pm
Sat – Sun:  8:00am to 5:00pm

Three Bags Full on Urbanspoon

Cookie

Cookie can be considered the granddaddy of the move towards a more authentic style of Thai food in Melbourne. When it opened it was well ahead of the competition, but these days has been left behind somewhat. You’ll still get a decent feed there, and the food is good quality, it’s just a bit tired compared to places like Chin Chin and Bang Pop.

Given its location and opening hours, I think that Cookie works very well as a place to go for a drink and a few side dishes. The cocktails are great and the vastness of the menu means that you’ll find something that hits the spot food wise.

Cookie

Level 1 / 252 Swanston Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9663 7660
Email:            n/a
Website:        http://cookie.net.au/

Open
Mon – Sun:     12:00pm to 3:00am

Cookie on Urbanspoon

Shanghai Street Dumpling

Shanghai Street Dumpling is one of the best places for dumplings in Melbourne’s CBD. The venue is tiny, and you’ll often be waiting for around half an hour to get a table, but it’s all worth it. The interior is no frills tables and chairs, and the menu a range of Chinese dishes with a focus on dumplings.

Shanghai Street is run by Shanghai natives Min Shi and his wife Wayna Zhu, who both have a wealth of experience when it comes to making dumplings. The speciality is the steamed-pork xiao long bao – very thin dough containing a tasty broth and a ball of pork meat. These are great, as are all of the other dumplings on offer here, steamed or fried.

Shanghai Street Dumpling

342 Little Bourke Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9600 2250
Email:            n/a
Website:        n/a

Open
Mon – Sat:      11:30am to 8:30pm

Shanghai Street Dumpling on Urbanspoon

Huxtaburger

Huxtaburger is considered by many to be the best place in Melbourne for a burger, and it can’t be denied is that the burgers here are excellent. The menu is simple, with a handful of burger options named after the cast of the Cosby Show.

Open until 11pm, it’s a great option for a late night feed in Collingwood. Ingredients are all local, fresh and of the highest quality. There’s a definite hipster vibe about the place and sometimes service can be a somewhat nochalant, however it’s a small price to pay for the goodness that follows.

You can read my full review of the CBD branch of Huxtaburger here (the menu is identical to the Collingwood branch).

Huxtaburger

106 Smith Street
Collingwood
Victoria 3066
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9417 6328
Email:            n/a
Website:        http://huxtaburger.com.au

Open
Sun – Thu:      11:30am to 10:00pm
Fri – Sat:      11:30am to 11:00pm

Huxtaburger on Urbanspoon

Pellegrini’s Espresso Bar

Pellegrini’s is a Melbourne institution, and has remained unchanged in the decades since it opened. The food is hit and miss, and the vibe is very old school Italian – pizza, pasta, coffee, cakes etc.

If you’re looking for the best Italian food around, you certainly could do better, but if you’re looking for serviceable food and an old school vibe, then Pellegrini’s fits the bill.

Pellegrini’s Espresso Bar

66 Bourke Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9662 1885
Email:            n/a
Website:        n/a

Open
Mon – Sat:      8:00am to 11:30pm
Sun:                11:00am – 8:00pm

Pellegrini's Espresso Bar on Urbanspoon

Pizza Religion

Pizza Religion is a great option for Pizza if you find yourself in this part of town, which isn’t exactly known for its quality dining options. The reason that I discovered it was because I worked in the area and was looking for something that wasn’t Nandos, Subway or bad Sushi!

The venue is small, with a cozy heated courtyard out the back. Service is friendly, and the pizzas are tasty. The pizzas at pizza religion aren’t authentic pizzas, however the bases are thin and crispy, and the ingredients fresh, local and often creative. My favourite is the “Beef Cheek”, which contains Braised Beef Cheek, Celeriac Puree, Caramelised Onions and Gremolta.

Pizza Religion

493 Tooronga Road
Hawthorn East
Victoria 3123
Australia

Telephone:   (03) 9882 2555
Email:            info@pizzareligion.com.au
Website:        http://pizzareligion.com.au

Open
Sat – Wed:      4:00pm to 10:00pm
Thu – Fri:        12:00pm – 10:00pm

Pizza Religion on Urbanspoon


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Travel and food photographer and writer. Blogging about my travel experiences and reviewing eating and drinking spots in Melbourne and around the world.

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