The best cafes, restaurants, bars, shops and events in the Melbourne CBD.

Restaurants

Tres a Cinco

Restaurant

The Movida team's lively cantina, in the former Bar Tini site, brings home-style Mexican to Hosier Lane. Led by Mexican chef Sarai Castillo, expect beef tacos exactly how they're served in Mexico, prawn-and-chorizo tamales and a jiggly chocolate flan. Plus eight different Margaritas and hard-to-find agave spirits.

Daughter In Law

Restaurant

A vibrant pan-Indian diner serving naan pizzas, sweet-and-sour fried cauliflower and Tandoori-fired-pineapple cocktails.

Book a Table

Indu

Restaurant

You'll find this intimate Sri Lankan and South Indian restaurant behind a Victorian terrace frontage. Owner Sam Prince might use his Sri Lankan mum's recipes for aromatic, coconut-y red-lentil dal and potato curry. But the menu here isn’t strictly traditional. Find hoppers with goat’s curd and pomegranate pearls, dosas with bacon jam, and smoky, chai-infused Old Fashioneds.

Din Tai Fung

Restaurant

It's the dumpling chain with a Michelin star and outlets all around the world. What more encouragement do you need?

Book a Table

King William

Restaurant

A hole-in-the-wall sandwich joint with a tight rotating list of rolls, subs and house-made cordials. King William is very popular with the lunchtime crowd. So if you want to avoid a wait, plan on getting here just after opening or right before close.

Tonka

Restaurant

A CBD dining hot spot serving modern Indian.

Book a Table

Cafes

Holy Crumpets

Cafe

Put down the supermarket stuff, these small batch sourdough crumpets are the real deal.

Nico's Sandwich Deli

Cafe

This sandwich spot from a trio of experienced hospo players was supposed to open in March 2020. One pandemic and a long Fitzroy pop-up later, Nico's has made its way back to its original home in the CBD. Come for jazzed-up Italo-Japanese-leaning sangas, strong coffees and sweet shakes.

Saint Dreux

Cafe

Fancy katsu sandos and high-quality coffee are the draws at this takeaway-driven spot inside the St. Collins Lane food court.

5 & Dime

Cafe

5 & Dime is serving real-deal, New York-style bagels in the CBD.

The Moat

Cafe

More than simply the Wheeler Centre's bar and cafe, The Moat is a food and wine destination.

Book a Table

Greta

Cafe

At Greta, you'll find breakfast pasta, crackling-coated porchetta rolls and free aperitivo snacks. Swing by this olive and mustard-toned sandwich and wine bar for Axil coffee and Penny for Pound pastries, or linger with a Martini made with Four Pillars Olive Leaf Gin.

Bars

Byrdi

Bar

Drinks here include a boozy smoked-pear soda, and gin with jasmine and plum. Get yours alongside hibachi-grilled seafood.

Beneath Driver Lane

Bar

Moody blues and dark spirits at this cavernous, below-ground bar.

Book a Table

Curious

Bar

Descend a dark spiral staircase into this basement cocktail bar wrapped in a cocoon of timber, where you’ll find theatrical drinks with smoke, bubbles and art.

Book a Table

Nick and Nora’s

Bar

Across five rooms and three balconies, indulge in theatrical cocktails bubbling with liquid nitrogen, tropical boozy yuzu-pineapple punch bowls for four (served in a huge bronze swan), champagne towers, ridiculously large 15-litre bottles of Mumm, and fancy canapés.

Hihou

Bar

At this Japanese-influenced bar from the owner of Izakaya Den, you'll have a hard deciding whether you prefer the drinks or the food. The solution? In order to make your mind up, you should order copious amounts of both.

Book a Table

Angel Music Bar

Bar

An audiophile playground for celebrated restaurateur Con Christopoulos that serves up bar snacks with a side of sub-bass frequencies. Things are pretty fun and loud downstairs, and there's a few seats and some great drinks on offer. But it's on the upstairs dancefloor where the volume really turns up and things get loose.

Shops

Laguna

Shop

This supermarket in QV has an extensive range of Asian produce, ingredients and snacks. So it's a handy option if you want to stock up on all of staples in one place.

Tang The Asian Food Emporium

Shop

Tang (formerly known as Great Eastern Foods) has been stocking Asian groceries at its Russell Street residence for over 35 years. Come here for noodles, dim-sims, sambal, soy and sake.

Hometown Asian Supermarket

Shop

Come here for Japanese and Malaysian cuisine including hand rolled udon noodles, Kurbata Pork and umeshu (plum wine). Hometown has a large range of sweets from across the Asia.

KT Mart

Shop

This is one of two Korea Marts on Elizabeth Street. Visit for an unsurpassed array of kimchis, gochujangs and other Korean specialties. There are also plenty of frozen dumplings to take home and one of Melbourne's best line-ups of specialty rices.

búl

Shop

Classical tailored pieces from city to sea by local designer Virginia Martin.

Nique

Shop

Minimal, contemporary clothing favoured by creative professionals.