Best Melbourne Breakfast & Brunch Spots

MELBOURNE | Breakfast and brunch are 2 of the many things that Melbourne is known for around the world. Speak to any self-respecting foodie about why they want to visit Melbourne and “the breakfasts” will always come up. Sure you can good breakfasts anywhere in the world but for many a reason, Melburnians have embraced the first meal of the day (which is often available all day) with gusto.

While the obligatory smashed avocado is one of the most popular breakfast items in this city, the creativity of those in kitchens across the city knows no bounds, and some of the most innovative dishes in Melbourne can be found on its breakfast menus. Whether it’s something interesting or just a classic done well, Melbourne has you covered. Here are, in no particular order, 15 of The City Lane’s favourite places in which to get breakfast and brunch in Melbourne.

Bowery To Williamsburg

Bowery to Williamsburg in Melbourne’s CBD is a cafe that, as the name suggests, is inspired by Manhattan’s Bowery, Brooklyn’s Williamsburg and all things cool and New York City. Bowery to Williamsburg takes both Williamsburg’s hipster cues and food. Browsing through the offerings on the menu takes you to not just the cool part of Williamsburg, but the part where the hipsters and gentrification make way for what is a very traditional, Hasidic Jewish neighbourhood.

The 5 & Dime bagels are never a bad choice but our favourite dish is Lox on Latkes. Latkes are shallow fried potato pancake, and lox is the yiddish word for salmon. The dish is served with heirloom tomato, pickled fennel, cream fraiche and poached eggs. Another highlight on the menu is the decadent peanut butter hot chocolate.

There are 2 locations, both with the same menu however our favourite is the original on Oliver Lane, with its more New York vibe. Check out our full review here.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Bowery To Williamsburg
16 Oliver Lane / 123 Hardware Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Hardware Societe

Owned by the same folk behind Bowery To Williamsburg, Hardware Societe is on of the most Instagrammed breakfast spots in Melbourne and has a constant queue of people waiting to try the food from its popular all day breakfast menu.

The Spanish baked egg options are amongst the most popular and are excellent, however our favourite is the croque madame, a deliciously indulgent Gruyere topped grilled brioche sandwich filled with ham and bechamel and topped with a perfectly gooey fried egg. There’s some beetroot salad on the side too, but that’s not what this dish is about. Eat this and you probably won’t want lunch.

Coffee is very good (the beans are supplied by Brunswick East’s Padre), as is the selection of French pastries on offer.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Hardware Societe
120 Hardware Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Top Paddock

Along with Hardware Societe, Richmond’s Top Paddock is Melbourne’s other famous brunch spot. Despite being located in a relative dead spot on Church street, it the middle of but not in either the Richmond or Prahran cafe hotspots, it’s always busy. Why? Because the team at Top Paddock consistently produce some of the most innovative and interesting breakfast options in town (available all day) as well as some great lunch items.

The menu rotates frequently but rest assured you’ll leave impressed regardless of what you order. If you see it on the menu, the twice baked brioche French toast with fennel poached pears and burnt caramel sorbet is a must try medley of flavours and textures.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Also check out Top Paddock’s sister cafe The Kettle Black on 50 Albert Road, South Melbourne.

Top Paddock
658 Church Street
Richmond
Victoria 3121
Australia

Archie’s All Day

Southpaw was of our favourite Fitzroy bars and we were sad to hear that it was closing it’s doors a little while back. Thankfully Archie’s All Day has converted the space into something that does the space proud. There’s no real rule to the menu, the only prerequisite is that the food tastes good.

We’re big fans of the massive vanilla bean oatmeal with banana, blueberry, coconut, almonds & maple syrup. Another favourite is the Japanese inspired crispy poached eggs with daikon kim-chi, edamame, enoki mushrooms, sesame dressing and sourdough toast.

For those in the mood for something alcoholic, a very decent range of craft beer, wine, spirits and cocktails is available.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Archie’s All Day
189 Gertrude Street
Fitzroy
Victoria 3065
Australia

Small Victories

The hype has died down somewhat since Small Victories was awarded “Best Breakfast Spot of the Year” in The Age’s 2013 Good Food Under $30 Guide but the food is as good as it’s ever been. Owners Ben Farrant and Alric Hansen are committed to using local, fresh produce and, where possible, make as much as they can on site, including things like butter, yoghurt, jams and all of the smoked produce.

Our favourite dish is the “Small Victories Mixed Grill” which consists of a fried egg, breakfast sausage, black pudding, croquette, streaky bacon and baked beans.

Check out our full review here, and not that the sausage in the mixed grill has changed from when we first visited and is no longer too dry.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Small Victories
617 Rathdowne Street
Carlton North
Victoria 3054
Australia

Lady Bower Kitchen

Reservoir might not be one Melbourne’s trendy suburbs but for those willing to venture up north to Lady Bower Kitchen, good things await.  The focus is on fresh, seasonal produce and simple dishes that allow the ingredients to shine. The menu is relatively small, with a variety of all day breakfast dishes, sandwiches and drinks on offer. The preserves are made on site with whatever is available at the time and we highly recommend taking home a jar.

One of our favourite dishes is the rosemary mushrooms with pate, brioche, truffle oil, poached eggs and lettuce. If that’s not on the seasonal menu, look for the equally delightful ffluffy buttermilk pancakes with rhubarb & pear compote, rosewater infused mascarpone and pistachios.

Read The City Lane’s full review of Lady Bower Kitchen here.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Lady Bower
1A Marchant Avenue
Reservoir
Victoria 3073
Australia

Green Park Dining

Green park is a cafe/restaurant/bar that operates from morning until night and is at its busiest during the day when it’s location next to a park (complete with children’s playground) and bicycle path means a steady stream of potential customers. Unsurprisingly it’s a mixed, active crowd that frequent the place which is nice and casual.

Food runs all day however the breakfast menu is on offer only until 3:00pm. The food is simple with a quality on the produce used. All the favourites are here along with a few more interesting options, and the occasional influence of co-owner Jesse Gerner’s love of all things Spanish. We particularly love the cheese toastie, which contains smoked ham, Monterey Jack cheese, pickles and Dijon mustard. It’s not the most complex thing on the menu but it’s utterly irresistible.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Green Park Dining
815 Nicholson Street
Carlton North
Victoria 3054
Australia

Gypsey & Musquito

This is perhaps one of the most unique places on this list in that the food makes a concerted effort to use native ingredients. Bush teas, granola with wattleseed, macadamias and bush berries, a bit of saltbush here and a bit of native pepper there. Side sausages on the add on menu include wallaby, emu, crocodile and camel.

One of our favourite dishes is the organic Australian quinoa brekkie salad which contains fresh strawberries, toasted nuts and seed, currants, elderflower extract, raw agave syrup and coconut yoghurt.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

Gypsey & Musquito
382 Bridge Road
Richmond
Victoria 3121
Australia

Foxtrot Charlie

Foxtrot Charlie is one of those places that we keep coming back to for both breakfast and lunch because their permanent menu choices and rotating seasonal dishes never disappoint. It’s simple food with interesting flourishes here and there, along with great coffee.

One of the best items on the menu is the St Joseph’s Day Fritter which consists of a savoury ricotta fritter with sauteed mushrooms and speck served with a pea puree. Unique and delicious.

Also worth nothing that pretty much every food allergy and intolerance is taken care of at Foxtrot Charlie. You can read our full review here.

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Foxtrot Charlie
359 Sydney Road
Brunswick
Victoria 3056
Australia

The Vertue Of The Coffee Drink

This very “Melbourne” venue is hidden in a laneway behind some buildings at the back of a petrol station. It’s worth seeking out though, as the space, which was once a stables amongst other things is one of Melbourne’s more unique brunch spots. As the name indicates, The Vertue of the Coffee Drink is serious about its coffee and the beans, which are roasted on site, can be consumed in the form of almost any coffee drink that you can imagine.

Food wise, there’s a good selection of tasty breakfast and lunch options which makes choosing a favourite difficult but we can’t go past the surprisingly not overly sweet brioche French toast served with fresh strawberries, pistachio praline, mascarpone, strawberry coulis and mint.

Check out our full review of The Vertue of the Coffee Drink here.

top 15 best breakfast brunch melbourne

The Vertue Of The Coffee Drink
8 Raffa Place
Carlton
Victoria 3053
Australia

Cumulus Inc

Andrew McConnell’s Cumulus Inc runs from breakfast through dinner with a menu that changes as the day progresses. The breakfast menu contains the classics plus a range of more on-trend items. We’re big fans of Cumulus Inc’s version of “The Full English” which contains farmhouse slab bacon (the proper stuff), blood sausage on toast, fried eggs & smoked tomato. It’s the full English done right, but we aware that this dish is only on the menu during weekdays.

Cumulus Inc
45 Flinders Lane
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Wide Open Road

Wide Open Road is a favourite with Brunswick locals and it’s easy to see why. It’s set in a minimalist warehouse with a focus on the excellent in-house roasted single origin and blended coffee which is available any way you like (try the single origin batch brew). The food is also excellent with a one pager of all day breakfast items plus lunch options.

Try the delicious bacon sandwich with provolone, smoked mozzarella, bacon and apple & chilli relish.

Wide Open Road
274 Barkly Street
Brunswick
Victoria 3056
Australia

Common Galaxia

Named after a little known fish that’s native to the nearby river. the family-run Common Galaxia offers friendly service with simple food that uses local produce and excellent Seven Seeds coffee. Breakfast and brunch run all day (yes we’re confused as to why there’s a section of the menu listed as brunch if breakfast is all day) and there are also lunch options.

The avocado with ruby grapefruit, marinated goat’s cheese, basil, soy almonds, red onion & radish on sourdough is particularly good.

Common Galaxia
3/130 Victoria Street
Seddon
Victoria 3011
Australia

Industry Beans

Industry Beans roast all of their beans on site, and the selection of single origin and blends on offer is one of the most impressive in the city. You can buy beans to take away or have a coffee brewed any way you like. The seasonal bunch options range from the simple to the innovative. There are no rules to the menu and influenes come from Asia, the US, the Middle East and everywhere else.

One of our favourite items on the summer 2015/16 menu is the green papaya and peanut crusted egg with carrots, beanshoots, green mango, coriander and nahm jim.

Industry Beans
Warehouse 3
62 Rose Street
Fitzroy
Victoria 3065
Australia

The Grain Store

The Grain Store not only focuses on seasonal breakfast and lunch dishes, but also uses the CERES Fair Food Organic Food Delivery Service to ensure as little food miles are used as possible in the produce it sources. The food is a mixture of Australian, French, German and Mediterranean cooking. Breakfast is available until 12:00pm and one of our favourite ways to start the day is with the Cocoa, white chocolate and ricotto pancakes served with strawberry, peach, peppered caramel, lavender panna cotta, pistachio.

The Grain Store
517 Flinders Lane
Melbourne
Victoria 3000
Australia

Is your favourite breakfast and brunch spot on the list? If not let us know where you like to get your morning fix in Melbourne.

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Paul
Paul founded The City Lane back in 2009 as a place to share photos of his travels around Europe with friends and family. The City Lane might have changed quite a lot since those early days but one thing that’s remained constant is Paul’s passion for food, travel and culture, and a desire to photograph and write about his experiences.Paul has a strong inquisitive nature that drives him to look beneath the surface in order to discover what really makes a city and its people tick, and what better way to do this than over a good meal or drink, with a city’s locals, at places that people who live in that city actually frequent. Paul is also a co-host of The Brunswick Beer Collective, a podcast that may or may not actually be about beer.

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