So here are some of my faves, mostly northside but trust me, it will be worth the travel across town.
The Moor’s Head, Thornbury
The Moor’s Head is awesome, and folks south of the river will be pleased to know that they also have a restaurant in Elsternwick too. Their middle eastern take on pizza is just so good! With nice little starters and super yum salads to accompany your pizza, the menu is really easy to navigate.
They also do sweet pizzas (sort of like calzones) using old favourites like nutella and banana. I recommend ordering a pizza and salad and saving room for one of their Booza Pops, literally an ice cream on a stick. OH MY! They are seriously yum with each pop dipped in chocolate and topped with crushed nuts and honey. I’ve had both the pistachio and turkish delight pops, such a delicious and fun way to finish off a meal.
I love this place and should also mention that it is kid-friendly too. We’ve taken Ava there before and she loved it.
If you’re familiar with old school Italian restaurant Pellegrini’s, which is at the top end of the city (in Melbourne), then you will LOVE this place.
It’s charming and cosy and ticks all the boxes for me, and I really love it when a restaurant can whisk me away to another place halfway across the world. The first time I went, I sat up at the bar with friends and I could easily have been in a little town in the middle of Italy.
The menu is full of classic Italian pasta dishes like amatriciana, carbonara, marinara and ragu. The marinara is something else! A super generous helping and the perfect blend of white wine, oil and garlic in the sauce. As well as Australian wines, there are lovely Italian varieties, which I always order – when in Rome!
The staff are great and some have wonderful thick Italian accents, I could listen to them talk about the specials all day.
Stray Neighbour, Preston
This place is literally a five minute drive from my house. I’d heard about it on Broadsheet and was stoked to find out that one of my fave Melbourne artists, Ghostpatrol, had created murals inside the restaurant, as well as some very cool coaster creations.
I love that there are both indoor and outdoor spaces and the fit out is really cool. Out the front is the perfect spot for a Sunday afternoon, to sip on a rum, tonic and fresh lime (sorry, I got a bit carried away there!). There aren’t that many venues around here that have good outdoor spaces, so this might just become my hangout for the summer.
I’m yet to eat in the restaurant but the bar snacks are pretty impressive. We shared a steak sandwich, prawn popcorn with lemon dressing, beer battered pickles with smoked paprika aioli and shoestring fries with two sauces. YUM! Those pickles were so naughty, but so good.
The details inside are really unique. Alongside the Ghostpatrol murals, there are custom made dog head statues on top of the beer taps, exposed metallic pipes and a growing vine which climbs around the steel work structure on the ceiling.
They’ve opened up a huge panel in the ceiling to act like a skylight which lets in an abundance of natural light. There’s also a recreational area with booths and pool tables if you just wanna hang with your boys, ha!
Drop us a line if you check any of these out and enjoy.