The wait is over. These top new venues are open for drinking, dining and all-round good times.
Reine & La Rue
A stunning 132-year-old building has been transformed into Melbourne's most luxe new dining experience. Head to Reine & La Rue in the former stock exchange and dine under the grand gothic arches. The French-inspired menu is brimming with fine-dining favourites. Think caviar service, freshly shucked oysters and Wagyu by the kilo.
Tucked away on Driver Lane is a joint honing in on Italy's aperitivo culture. The menu focuses on tasty morsels like grilled artichokes, burrata with anchovies and house made arancini. As for drinks, you can't go wrong with $12 mini cocktails. Think classic martinis, spritzes and negronis. Speaking of negronis, there's a free flowing fountain of the good stuff right at the bar.
Johnny, Vince & Sam’s Ristorante
Is it a restaurant or is it Nonna’s house? Comedy trio Sooshi Mango has opened its own version of an old-school Italian diner – Johnny, Vince and Sam's Ristorante. And it comes complete with a generous serving of nostalgia. Step inside and be transported to a retro-style home packed with vintage decor. The food’s pretty great too. Enjoy parmesan-crusted schnitzel, slow-cooked beef meatballs, arancini and more.
Melbourne has just earned itself a new multi-level venue featuring a restaurant, rooftop bar and basement comedy club. Get the crew together for catch-up drinks at Morris House and head to the top level for signature cocktails like the frozen vovo margarita or the pavlova daquiri. The food is top-notch too and is available on every floor. Think wagyu beef burgers, spanner crab spaghetti, king salmon salad and eye fillet with chimichurri and fries. In the basement you’ll find a NYC-inspired comedy venue hosting stand-up gigs from some of Australia’s best talent. On Thursdays sip on $16 negronis and kick back to the sounds of live jazz.
Craft beers on tap, elevated pub grub and an ‘80s inspired fit-out. Amphlett House at Ovolo Laneways is a welcome addition to the Paris End. Try a bev from local brewers while you dine on caviar, steak and frites. This restaurant isn’t just for beer lovers though. You’ll also find an impressive wine list. Or try Aussie-inspired cocktails like the smoky eucalyptus margarita.
Enjoy Australian wines paired with native produce in a warm and inviting space at Myrtle Wine Bar. A newcomer to Warburton Lane, the two-storey space is beautifully rustic. To eat there’s wattleseed lamb with foraged salad, zucchini flowers with buffalo ricotta and pan fried Greek cheese with myrtle caramel. And oh-so nostalgic house-made sausage rolls elevated with fancy tomato sauce
Alt Pasta Bar
Silky strands of handmade pasta and creamy risottos take centre stage at this moody late-night pasta bar. Tucked down tiny Niagara Lane, Alt Pasta Bar's chefs create art with simple dishes in an open kitchen. Order a plate of gnocchi with wagyu ragu or perhaps squid ink fettuccine with spanner crab. Everything is made in-house, from the pasta down to the seasonal gelato, and carefully paired with a curated wine list.
Find a fiery new spot for traditional Filipino food, hidden in a laneway. Grab a seat at the chef’s omakase table to watch your meal cooked over the open fire in front of your eyes. Pair colourful cocktails with dishes like wild barramundi, lamb ribs with sticky 'adobo' sauce and smoked pineapple with spiced coconut and caviar.
Located in an intimate, futuristic space, Archer's needs to go right to the top of your special occasion dining list. Beautiful beams of light glow warmly against the unique, vault-like interiors. And the menu is an ever-changing celebration of seasonal, local flavours. Don't miss a trip up to the 15th floor for drinks at neighbouring Sunset House.
Nomad's food is inspired by travels through Spain, Morocco and the Middle East, but grounded in Australia's fine local produce. Dishes are cooked with fire and smoke, think zucchini flowers with truffle honey and wood-roasted market fish with asparagus. Add a side (or three) of burrata and fennel jam and mop it up with za'atar flatbread.
Last updated on Mon 18 Dec 2023
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