Nights out in Melbourne;

Living in Melbourne, I’ve always got friends visiting from Perth, Sydney and NZ. Now that’s been 19 months since I moved to this incredible city, I’ve got quite the list of places I’ve visited & enjoyed.

Depending on the night and company, I will either go to one place or several. Chapel Street is my all time favourite (recommendations coming next!) but the CBD is slowly coming close to the favourite spot.

These are my top three CBD picks at the moment.

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Image source: Hidden City Secrets

State of Grace

Cool bar and restaurant on Collins Street with cosy velvet couches which has an extensive food & drinks list. But my all time favourite is Fall from Grace, an underground bar accessed via a secret book shelf (just ask the staff to show you!)

Both State of Grace and Fall from Grace are super cosy spots for winter date nights. But word of warning: Friday and Saturday nights are super busy! Best to go elsewhere if you’re looking to have intimate conversations.

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Image source: Mesa Verde

Mesa Verde

Mesa Verde is a mexican style tapas bar situated in the Curtin House. It gets really busy (and loud) for dinner but if you go slightly later, it’s the perfect spot for drinks and tapas with friends (or a date).

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Touche Hombre. Image source: The City Lane

Touche Hombre`

So I’m a massive mexican lover and this place does incredible dishes plus has all the tequila you could dream of. Amazing vibe and it’s close to Curtin House too!

Other suggestions can be found via The Urban List.

Happy exploring!

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Melbourne Food Guide (2)

Over the last few months, I have tried & tested many cafes, restaurants and bars and these are the ones that have made the cut (I do not recommend places where the food or atmosphere was average).

EAT (BREKKIE/LUNCH)

CBD: Grand Trailer Park (amazing burgers and mac n cheese croquettes!)

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Grand Trailer Park

INNER NORTH: Industry Beans, Fitzroy — Hammer & Tong 412, Fitzroy — Green Refectory, Brunswick

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Hammer & Tong 412

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The most incredible bubblegum popping candy pancakes from Hammer & Tong 412

INNER EAST: Legacy, Camberwell — Patch Cafe, Richmond — Kitty Burns, Abbotsford

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INNER SOUTH: Kettle Black, South Melbourne — The Petty officer, Albert Park — Urban Projuice, Albert Park — Dundas Fausset, Albert Park — Uncommon, Windsor — SOS cafe, South Yarra — Le Petit Prince, Armadale — High Society Cafe, Armadale — Matcha Mylkbar, St Kilda — Left Field, Carnegie

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Tiramisu & espresso buckwheat hotcakes from SOS cafe

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Cookies & cream donut sliders from Left Field

EAT (DINNER)

Mr Miyagi, Windsor

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Mr Miyagi goodness!

DESSERT

Messina Gelato, Collingwood & Windsor

DRINK

State of Grace, CBD (make sure you ask about fall from Grace) // Mesa Verde, CBD

 

Enjoy!

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The monthly round up: April;

This month, I moved to Hawthorn, into my 19th house over my short lifetime. It was only a temporary move but I really fell in love with the federation style home and the area. The housemates were awesome & it was good to change up my living situation once again. I may be one of the crazy ones enjoying packing/unpacking 5 times in 6 months!

The unused lounge in the Hawthorn house

The unused lounge in the Hawthorn house

My best friend S flew down to Melbourne for a week and it was the first time I’ve seen her since her wedding last October (even though it felt like it’s only been a few weeks!) so champagne for brunch was definitely called for.

Top Paddock brunch dates with S

Top Paddock brunch dates
with S

April was also the month I FINALLY got my butt down to Top Paddock to try the world famous ricotta hotcake and my life will never be the same again! That hotcake…heaven on a plate.

Ricotta hotcake from Top Paddock

Ricotta hotcake from Top Paddock

Sometime mid April, I was told to wear “something nice” and the rest was a surprise. It made me realise just how exciting it is to not know the plan. And when there’s a view like this involved? Happy Anna.

Lover of heights

Lover of heights

Other places visited this month:  who’s harry // porgie and mr jones // squistio // bakers wife // hello sailor // touchwood // 1,000 steps // harmer’s haven

The monthly round up: March;

March was another good month. I started valuing houses again & boy are the houses here amazing! I flew up to Brisbane for a few days to attend the Isagenix annual conference, got all dolled up, ate good food & saw my bestie, S at Jamie’s Italian. Our 2nd visit together, my 7th visit over 3 restaurants (a little obsessed!)

Gala night with my russian sister <3

Gala night with my russian sister ❤

The Communal, Brisbane CBD

Jamie's Italian, Brisbane

Jamie’s Italian, Brisbane

My parents came over from Perth for a week & we went up to the 88th floor and I think this is where they fell in love with my city.

Eureka Skydeck

Of course, their Melbourne visit consisted of trying some new places with me (duh).

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The Stables of Como

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Cecconi’s on Flinders Lane

Other places visited in Melbourne this month: campari // who’s harry // MoVida // othello // doughboys doughnuts // entrecôte // two birds one stone // drugstore espresso //bar none

My brother from another mother, M got married in NZ so it was another long weekend away for me visiting friends & family.

Reunited with H <3

Reunited with H ❤

99% of the time I'm in gym clothes. So good to be back with K!

99% of the time I’m in gym clothes. So good to be back with K!

Wedding ready!

Wedding ready!

After so many long weekends away from Melbourne the last few months, I flew back to Melbourne not wanting to leave any time soon. For the first time in what feels like 10 years, I don’t have any trips planned and you know what? I don’t mind. Moving to Melbourne just under six months ago is a holiday in itself. So many places to explore and so much food to get through 😀

Melbourne: The 2013 Edition;

A few months ago, I booked a $45 flight from Perth to Melbourne (thank YOU Tiger Air for your awesome deals!), not really knowing if I’d be able to go as it was in the middle of my second week of exams. Turns out, luck was on my side with my last exam being on the Tuesday & flight leaving Perth on Wednesday night. With the amount of friends I’ve made over the years living in Melbourne (& the Perth friends that have moved over), it’s become an annual trip.

Since I had just finished my degree, the plan was to take it easy, see friends & use the time to relax. I’m a creature of habit & I always go back to the same places but on this visit, I promised myself no re-visits because there’s just far too much other stuff to try first (accommodation I know & trust doesn’t count!)

So here’s a list of the places I checked out & would recommend. I went to some others but they didn’t quite make the ‘good’ list.

BRUNCH//

Wide Open Road

Wide Open Road, Brunswick: Amazing service, interior & lots of fresh food options. I got the cauliflower, ricotta & quinoa fritters with shaved brussel sprouts, asparagus, chilli jam, poached eggs & smoked trout (and a green juice). I’d give this place a 10/10.

Little Big Sugar Salt menu & green juice

Her Hot Mess (big + sugar): “big, sexy, sweet smush of pancake bits, blueberries & nectarine, creme anglaise, bacon & peacon candy & girly flowers”

Little Big Sugar Salt, Richmond: This place. If I could eat at one cafe for the rest of my life, it would be this place. It’s situated in ‘Viet Town’ & looks like it’s just got a few window seats looking out onto the street but then you get welcomed to the back where there’s two private rooms, one with a big table & another with smaller tables. Everything about this place was amazing, even their bathroom! (of course I took a photo of it).  This place gets 12/10, if not higher.

Sticky Beak juices

Sticky Beak, Windsor: Situated just off Chapel Street, cute little place with a good selection of food (you know, not too much & not too little). I got the bircher muesli with crisp shredded apple. Major food envy as my friend got the benedict dish though!

The Grain Store menu

Buckwheat & ricotta pancakes with apple, orange nutella, apple puree, spiced mascrapone & pistachio streusel

The Grain Store, CBD: This was a last minute suggestion from a friend & as it was just around the corner from my accommodation, was the perfect breakfast spot one morning. It’s located at the quiet end of Flinders Lane so chances of passing it are quite slim but this place got packed! I was extremely pleased with my breakfast choice & couldn’t believe how full I was. Definitely a place I would recommend to anyone, the food, atmosphere & service was top notch. 10/10 (could even be a 11/10).

Yong Green Food

Yong Green Food, Fitzroy: Going out with a Vegan proved to be very easy this day! We got green juices, buckwheat crepes with mushrooms, raw spicy pad thai  + raw nachos, followed by chocolate and white raspberry cheesecake. I could of possibly eaten more but I behaved myself. 10/10 for Yongs!

Three Bags Full, Abbotsford

Three Bags Full, Abbotsford // Seven Seeds, Carlton: both really cute places. Good food, juices, interior & lovely wait staff.

DINNER//

Dumplings Plus, CBD: Awesome place to go with a group. We got lots of dishes to share, I used chopsticks all night (HUGE accomplishment & it was cheap cheap cheap). Plus, it’s BYO & they have some lovely cheap wine there too (none of this crazy mark up).

Chingón Mexican

Chingón Mexican, Richmond: Before my trip, I was desperate to find out what this amazing place was called so I put it to my instagram with a little help from friends but it was the hashtags on another photo that helped me find this place. We went a little late on a Sunday night so it was slowly closing but they had yummy sangria & tacos and they even made some vegan tacos for my friend. It’s definitely a place I’d go back to.

DRINKS//

Naked for Satan, Fitzroy // The Cullen, South Yarra // The Emerson, South Yarra // 3 Monkeys, Prahran (cheap drinks) // Left Bank, South Bank – all good drinking spots

Sunday night fire time

LaLaLand, Windsor: Situated on Chapel St, this was the last bar we got to on our Sunday night bar crawl. And by last bar I mean, there was no way we were leaving when there was a fire place, $20 jugs of white peach sangria + good 90’s hip hop playing. Currently thinking of when I can go back to this amazing place for nights on end (breaking my ‘no same place’ rule all in one post!)

Other than eat, I did lots of walking, shopping (even more walking) & enjoyed my first bubble bath in what feels like years. I came back to Perth feeling OH so refreshed but also so damn confused.  Melbourne always takes a piece of my heart each visit & I feel like this visit took a massive chunk. With university all done & dusted, is it time to finally move over to Melbourne after years of thinking about it?

Don’t worry Perth, I’ve still got some property qualifications to get here & save for my big US trip in August 2014 but when I get back? Who knows. A lot has changed in the last week, month & year for me.  Time to take each week as it comes!