It's showtime! But first, we eat. Keep the tummy rumbles at bay with Melbourne's best pre and post-show dining. 

If you’re going to Her Majesty’s Theatre

Off to see Chicago? It's a high-energy production, so you'll need a full belly going in. Bossley at Rydges is right across the road and the pre-theatre menu is a must. Starting at $68, try a highlights reel of the best dishes like handmade burrata and rump steak with smoked marrow butter. Fuel up with Bodega Underground’s spicy Mexican pre-theatre set menus. Whether you go the regular or vegan option, everyone gets a cocktail on arrival and yummy churros.  

Robata has a quick bites menu, which will have you in and out in under an hour. Sit at the bar and enjoy sushi, yakitori and an ice cold Asahi. Around the corner there's Pinchy's. This luxe bar is doing a seven course set menu for $85. It features Canadian scallops with truffles, kingfish ceviche and of course the famous lobster roll. Or book in for Bar Margaux's exclusive pre-theatre dining experience, featuring a Chicago-themed cocktail menu.

Two friends are sitting at a bar having a drink.
Pinchy's

If you’re going to the Regent or Athenaeum Theatre

Before you head to Wicked, fuel up next door on the terrace at Allegro. The restaurant has a standout pre-theatre menu for $69 including a glass of wine, beer or soft drink. Choose from dishes like pan-fried barramundi or caramelized gnocchi. The George's pre-theatre express menu is just the start of your fabulous night out. For $65 you'll load up on sticky lamb ribs, prawn toast, Thai-inspired curry and more. Or get into the full witchy spirit at Lobby Lounge’s Wicked-themed high tea.

Go for oysters and a pet nat before the show at the newly reopened Parcs. Or step over to Supernormal, where you can splurge a little. From lobster rolls to smoked duck, it’s Asian-inspired dining with a contemporary twist. Looking for a romantic French bistro? Conveniently located opposite the Regent and outside the Athenaeum Theatre, you'll find Bistrot d'Orsay. For a luxe feast, Box Seafood Restaurant is right next door to the Regent and offers some of Melbourne's freshest seafood.

If you’re going to the Princess Theatre

Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Sunset Boulevard is making its way to Princess Theatre in May.  Get cosy at The European's Old World–inspired, wood-panelled restaurant. It’s the perfect spot to start your night out. Or grab some pub grub at eternal top-end favourite The Imperial. Choose the regular parma with shaved ham, or try the eggplant with Napoli sauce and mozzarella. 

Kicking on afterwards? Have a late-night Greek supper at pop-up restaurant Kafeneion. We’re talking braised pork with lemon, leek and potato; spicy cheese croquettes and traditional lemon cake for dessert.  

Plates of Greek food on a table.
Kafeneion

If you’re going to Arts Centre Melbourne

From ballet to circus – you could see a new performance here every week. There are heaps of fab feeds nearby too, like the hearty slow cooked beef cheek at Hophaus. Nearby Protagonist and The Barre are perfectly positioned for a quick coffee or post-show drinks. La Camera in Southbank also offers speedy pre-theatre dining. Or start your date night out right at The Deck. Think fine wines, fresh pasta and sparkling city views. 

If you’re going to the Comedy Theatre

A visit to the Comedy Theatre could be the perfect opportunity to experience Farmer’s Daughters. This three-level dining destination is all about the Gippsland region’s great seasonal produce. Or make a date at Shujinko. Fill up on steamy ramen for less than $25 at this Chinatown favourite. La Madonna is also in the vicinity and has a $50 pre-theatre seasonal menu.

A group of friends are doing a cheers in a restaurant.
Farmer’s Daughters

If you’re going to the Malthouse Theatre

Head online and see what's on for the year at the Malthouse. Then book a table at The Atlantic Restaurant. You can go large at this seafood place, or opt for the affordably fancy fish and chips. Or feast on cult-status empanadas and dulche de leche flan at Asado. Make it a meal to remember with the Saturday bottomless lunch. The hand-picked menu of signature dishes is paired with bottomless beer, wine and sangria for two hours. 

If you’re going to Hamer Hall

The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s home is a short walk from Federation Square. Swing by Taxi Kitchen for Wagyu dumplings, Szechuan spiced duck and sweet treats to finish. Or kick back with drinks and comfort food right by the water at Riverland Bar. We love this very Melbourne beer garden’s weekend bottomless pizza and spritz deal for $65. After the show, you won't have to stray far. 

Two friends are in a restaurant.
Taxi Kitchen

If you’re going to the Melbourne Recital Centre

Melbourne Recital Centre’s line-up of shows is pretty impressive. Feeling peckish before a night out? Often lively Blondie Bar spills onto the pavement in front of the MRC. It’s all about good times, from beer and bao to more substantial dishes over a bottle of vino. Next door is the buzzy Miss Pearl Bar + Dining. Indulge in dim sum, Asian fusion dishes and vibrant cocktails, knowing you’re literally steps from where you need to be. 

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