Art Centre Melbourne has recently opened a new, dramatic, theatre inspired café and bar in its forecourt. Visitors are treated to a menu created from the produce of local growers and suppliers and inspired by a wide range of multicultural influences and it’s hard to go past a classic Australian toastie that has been reinterpreted. The new café and bar will feature custom coffee blends, freshly baked cakes and sweets, as well as a new cocktail list inspired by Melbourne and its local distillers. 100 St Kilda Road, Melbourne / Monday – Friday 7.00am – late, Saturday & Sunday 9.00am - late
The reopening of The Ian Potter Queen’s Hall brings one of Melbourne’s most breathtaking historical venues back to life after a 16-year closure. For architect lovers, this double storey nineteenth century interior that acts as tranquil reading room by day and the hall transforms into an opulent venue for special events at night, will not disappoint. Access this majestic library via the heritage marble staircases from the Swanston Street entrance, or via lift, and browse through the abundant collection of Australian literature, including poetry, drama and young adult fiction. State Library Victoria, 328 Swanston Street / Monday – Thursday 10.00am-9.00pm, Friday-Sunday 10.00am-6.00pm
Lobster rolls and champagne have taken up a permanent residence on Bourke Street. Committed to using sustainable seafood sourced from Maine and Alaska (USA), at Pinchy’s you’ll find everything from anchovies on toast to muscle chowder and truffle fries, but the signature lobster roll is the must-have. Inside you’ll find pink neon signs and décor with a terrace overlooking Bourke Street. Level 1, 200 Bourke Street, Melbourne / Wednesday – Sunday 11:30am – late
Just in time for summer Kenny Lover has opened on High Street in Thornbury, serving ice-cream with a heavy focus on native Australian ingredients and innovative flavour combinations including soy sauce, Davidson plum and ginger and yuzu and sake, including several vegan options. Oh, and they serve hot chips too. The store has a quirky yet luxe, 70’s Australian corner store feel. 796 High Street, Thornbury, Monday – Sunday 1.00pm-10.00pm (11pm Friday and Saturday).
Market LaneAn exciting new fresh food experience is on offer to visitors and residents of the District Docklands. Market Lane, is designed to look and feel like an urban market, focused on indulging the senses and fostering a sense of community and place. Believed to be the largest supermarket based fresh food and convenience precinct within a 5km radius of Melbourne’s CBD, it’s your one stop shop for all your cooking needs. With some of Melbourne’s best gourmet offers and a number of eateries, your sure to not leave empty handed or with an empty stomach. 7 days 10.00am – 7.00pm
Teaming up with Asahi, Citizen will be the only spot in Australia where you’ll be able to get your hands on Asahi Super Dry served as cold as it is intended to be at -2.2 degrees celsius. The bar menu features more than 25 gin and whisky options, and a range of cocktails. On the food front, you’ll find a menu best shared including snacks such as a crumbed mushroom burger with a matcha bun, barra wings coated in semolina, then fried, and served with a seaweed mayo sauce. 15 Dukes Walk, South Wharf / Monday – Friday 7.00am – late, Sat & Sun 8.00am – late.
Popular Sydney Based patisserie Black Star Pastry, has officially opened a pop-up store in St Kilda. Located under Rain Room’s Jackalope Pavilion, the pop-up store will be in Melbourne until at least Easter 2020. Best known for its famous Strawberry Watermelon Cake, this bakery’s star has risen since humble beginnings in Newtown in 2008. New York Times recently declaring it the “world’s most Instagrammed cake”. Other Black Star staples coming to Melbourne include the Raspberry Lychee Cake and the Pistachio Lemon Zen Cake. 2C Acland Street, St Kilda / Monday – Friday 7.00am – 4.00pm, Saturday & Sunday 8.00am – 5.00pm
Koko Black Chocolate has just opened its brand-new flagship store in the Como Centre of South Yarra. The opening of this store sees the introduction of the first-ever Koko Chocolate Bar, where customers will be able to order Koko Black’s signature hot chocolates in a range of flavours. In the store you’ll find a custom-designed praline counter showing off Koko Black’s collection of over 42 delicate, hand-crafted pralines and a dedicated wall with more than 700+ chocolate blocks in 25 flavours. They will also be serving a selection of croissants, cookies and cakes, as well as freshly churned milkshakes and house-made ice creams. 299 Toorak Road, South Yarra / Monday – Wednesday 8.00am – 7.00pm, Thursday & Friday 8.00am – 6.00pm, Saturday 9.00am – 6.00pm, Sunday 9.00am – 5.00pm
While you are at Koko Black Como, be sure to check out David Jones’s first standalone food store located on the corner opposite. The polished 425 sqm store stocks gourmet pre-prepared meals, including a new vegan range, as well as organic barista coffee, chocolate made from ethically sourced cocoa, and entertaining essentials like fine wine and spirits, gourmet cheese, cured meats and read to cook party foods. 625 Chapel Steet, South Yarra / Thursday – Friday 9:30am - 7.00pm, Saturday - Wednesday 9:30am -7.00pm
The Continental is the newest addition to Little Malop Street. At the site of former Malaysian restaurant, Sedap Corner, owner Chris Taranto has given the space an extensive 1940s Italian-inspired makeover with art deco lighting and polished concrete floors. Will Moyle, (worked previously at Donovans and the Wine Bar at Point Lonsdale) heads up the kitchen with a menu of modern Italian dishes designed to share. There's also a $45 five-course lunch available on Sundays. 82 Little Malop Street, Geelong / Monday – Saturday 4.00 pm – late, Sunday 12.00pm – late
Deep Blue Hot Springs has opened its new geothermal experience to guests, named The Sanctuary. Harnessing the natural geothermal waters, the Deep Blue Hot Springs is a self-guided journey in an open-air sanctuary of hot spring pools and mood enhancing bathing experiences. Guests can choose from a range of different pools including hydrotherapy, cold plunge, foot spa, sensory and aromatherapy and a salt therapy cave. Located within The Sanctuary is the Nourish Dome, a place where guests can replenish and rehydrate with a chef prepared nutritional grazing menu and beverages. The Hot Springs Sanctuary is an adult’s exclusive area. Worm Bay Road, Warrnambool.
Patient Wolf has opened the doors to a new gin distillery and bar in Melbourne’s Southbank. Bucking the trend in Australia for regional based distilleries, they have moved their hand-crafted gin production from previous digs in inner-city Brunswick, even closer to the heart of the city. This exciting new offering allows guests the opportunity to taste the range of Patient Wolf gins, peek behind the scenes at the fully functioning distillery and join intimate gin masterclasses to learn more about the distilling process. 34-36 Market Street, Southbank, 3006, Thursday – Friday 4.00pm - 8.00pm, Saturday – Sunday 11.00am – 5.00pm