We’re steering clear of the (frankly, overdone) debate of Sydney vs. Melbourne and instead, we’re going to relish in the things that make Melbourne pretty damn cool.
This Boxing Day, we packed our bags and headed to what some claim is the coffee capital of the world. Well let us tell ya, this summer, coffee isn’t the only thing Melbourne’s got to flaunt. Here’s a guide to all our favourite things from our most recent holiday to Melbs.
WHERE WE DRANK
'We’re on hollz' always seems to become our constant catch-phrase when we’re travelling. When it comes to splurging on nice bottles of red- or as we’re now cultured, organic orange wines- this statement proves a wonderful excuse to get a lil' toasty.
We love everything about this hidden rooftop bar. The exclusivity, the views, the wine- it’s unsurpassed. Overlooking Parliament House, Siglo is an intimate open-air cigar & wine bar that sits on top of the Melbourne Supper Club, next to the Princess Theatre.
We recommend a bottle of Shiraz (or two) & a box of Tiger Buck Jerky.
GARDEN STATE HOTEL
Who doesn’t love a beer garden? And when the Melbourne weather is unpredictable, it can help to have a roof over your head. This classic Flinders Lane pub has everything you can ask for when meeting up with mates for a few drinks. We chose the Garden State Hotel as our watering hole before a Friday night at the NGV.
NAKED FOR SATAN
We’re suckers for a good rooftop. Naked for Satan is on our hit list every time we’re in Melbourne. The glass walls lining the bar's perimeter make you feel as if you’re among the clouds, with unbeatable views of Fitzroy & the city skyline to gaze out at.
QT HOTEL ROOFTOP
We can get a little bougié if we feel like it. We stumbled into the QT Hotel on our last day of the trip to celebrate the first day of the new year. The shaded couches and misters helped us feel a bit less fragile that afternoon.
ART WE SAW
This temporary exhibition at Melbourne’s NGV shouldn’t be left out of your summer visit to Melbourne. The exhibition titled, KAWS: Companionship in the Age of Loneliness showcases the artist’s most well-known murals, street art, sculptures, product designs, and more.
KEITH HARING AND BASQUAIT
We visited this temporary exhibition as part of the NGV’s Friday Night series. In our opinion, the ambience and live music really tied together the experience. The debate of which artist we preferred more is still to be decided, but we agreed that the exhibit integrated the work of these two creative seamlessly.
A trip inside a trip- how meta of us. On NYE we hired a car en route to Jamieson VIC, where we were hoping to spend the evening with a few mates. On the drive up, we stopped at Heide Museum of Modern Art for a quick breakfast and a look at what this small town gallery had to offer. We were impressed to say the least! Our favourite installations were, En route, which featured sculptures made from botanical materials, and the Terminus VR installation.
THINGS WE DID
BOXING DAY CRICKET TEST
One for the bucket list.
NEW YEARS EVE
There’s something about being surrounded by friends (new & old) on New Years Eve. After our plans to Jamieson changed, due to uncertain bushfire conditions, we turned to plan b. Luckily, plan b didn’t seem like plan b at all- as we overlooked the Melbourne fireworks from our friend's rooftop balcony.
WHERE WE ATE
We were lucky enough to get a spot at Cumulus Inc. for brunch one morning- in the very best seats in the house, might I add. Sitting at the bar overlooking the kitchen, we were able to watch the agile chefs at work. Don't fuck with a chef.
On our plates: Bacon Bap with gentleman's relish // Baker Bleu country loaf, with tomato, galotyri cheese & basil
This is one of those places where you shamelessly snap a pic of your plate. Recommended to us by a friend, we didn’t know what to expect- and to be honest, with a name like that, we weren’t expecting too much. Fortunately, we were blown away by the food's presentation and snapped our flat-lays accordingly.
On our plates: Turmeric & beetroot bagel w/ smoked black garlic cream cheese, house cured salmon, pickled zucchini, avocado and fried capers // Smoked manchengo omelette with chilli roasted zucchini, pickled sweet fennel, paprika roasted pumpkin seeds and pumpkin sourdough // polenta chips with garlic aioli
After getting hit with +2 hour waitlists all around town (at 9pm), we were hangry. Thankfully, after a bit'a light begging, we were able to snag a spot at the bar of Tonka. This modern Indian restaurant off Flinders Lane is one to add to your list.
On our plates: Beef cheek biryani with Sella rice, saffron and mint // Avani’s lamb curry with roasted coconut, black cardamom and white poppy seeds // Burrata cheese, fresh coriander relish and charred roti // Fried cauliflower, garam masala salt, fenugreek and yoghurt dressing
THE place for a boozy BYO Lebanese dinner with a group of mates. Things got messy.
Bold statement here, but this may have been some of the best pizza we’ve ever tasted. And one of us had broccoli as a topping...yeah, a weird but in no ways regretful choice.
On our plates: Garlic base pizza, ham off the bone, caramelised pineapple, rosemary & thyme salt, smoked scarmozza // Garlic base pizza with broccoli, buffalo mozzarella, roquette, pesto, ricotta salta
Coming in hot after a day at the cricket, we were lucky enough to be seated early at Pastuso and trusting enough for the waitress to bring us a selection of the house favourites. Let's just say Cascade Street Studios may be relocating to Peru in the near future.
On our plates: Fried cassava chips with shaved parmesan and spicy rocoto mayonnaise // Ceviche de Merluza // Quinoa hummus, Peruvian chilli dust, crisp flatbread // Dry-aged Argentinan striploin // tres leches, candied walnuts