MELBOURNE | Easily missed despite the descriptive name as you walk by, is CBD spot No. 100 Flinders Lane. I recently did some client work for them in my capacity as a photographer, and also visited with a group of friends to experience the venue as a diner.
When Code Black Coffee founder, Joseph Haddad, opened No. 100 in April this year, it was a café by day and wine bar by night. Popular with nearby office workers and the after-work crowd, the venue had all the hallmarks of a new Melbourne wine bar in 2023. Great coffee; an interesting wine and spirits list focusing on local, independent producers; sandwiches and salumi by day; and a snacky modern Australian/European menu by night.
Despite positive reviews and steady stream of customers, something about No. 100 wasn’t quite vibing with Joseph. Joseph wanted not just a venue that ticked the boxes, but a space that he could feel connected with. He made the decision to change things up, and relaunched No. 100 this month, as a Lebanese cafe and wine bar, with long-time Code Black employee Riccardo De Rosa running front of house, and chef Ben Ransom leading the kitchen.
No. 100 is now a space where Joseph’s love of hospitality combines with his Lebanese heritage. His passion and excitement around the new concept is evident when you speak to him about it. Chef Ransom, with Joseph’s input and feedback, has developed a menu that swaps the daytime sandwiches and salumi with Lebanese wraps and pickles, and the evening menu with a still snacky, contemporary take on Lebanese food.
Basturma is served atop a bed of kataifi with pickled onion, while hummus comes topped with cashews and a burnt putter drizzle. Charred baby corn is a delightful fusion of Lebanese and Australian elements, with shanklish, Aleppo pepper, fermented garlic, finger lime, and macadamia.
Other worldly influences on Lebanese food are present on the menu. Lamb shawarma is served with sumac, onion, parsley, and tahini, atop a soft taco-like pita. It’s a nod to the taco al pastor, and the Lebanese-Mexican cuisine that developed in the 1900s in Mexico City
The drinks menu is still predominantly local and independent, but it’s now joined by interesting drops from Lebanon. Be sure to try the Mersel Lebnani Orange Skin Contact, a delicious blend of Lebanese Merwah, and Sauvignon Blanc wines. For cocktails, try the Martini 100, a carry-over from the old menu, made with eucalypt, vermouth and Never Never gin. Coffee is, of course, from Code Black, and is brilliant.
No. 100 Flinders Lane
100 Flinders Lane
Telephone: (03) 9943 5861
Tue – Sat: 11:00am to 11:00pm