The name of Shop 225, sitting as it so happens on 225 Melville Road, is the only unimaginative thing about it.
As is family tradition, we ventured to Lupo to celebrate Whatever Floats Your Bloat Bro’s birthday because nothing symbolises a special occasion in my family more than a big bowl of pasta (or a risotto if you’re the rice-loving Papa Whatever Floats Your Bloat).
70-year-old Carlton institution Lygon Food Store has given way to contemporary Chinese restaurant Lagoon Dining. Thankfully Lagoon Dining is making good on the legacy of the big shoes it’s stepped into by churning out some of the best dishes I’ve tasted in a while.
Tamura Sake Bar is a small sake and jazz records izakaya on Gertrude Street, not unlike the ones I recently encountered in Japan where you couldn’t get a seat if you were in a group bigger than three.
Sushi Ten’s reputation precedes it – it used to serve its famed donburis from within Port Phillip Arcade before shifting to Rathdowne Street.
If you think about ‘fusion food’ and tandoori chicken pizza in the same breath, you need to visit Leonardo’s Pizza Palace and try its Chinese bolognese pizza, which tastes decidedly better than it sounds.
There is something undoubtedly comforting about having a warm noodle soup in colder months and I’ve discovered there’s no better place to do this than Melbourne’s first dedicated Laotian noodle outpost, Noodle House by Lao-Luangprabang.
Dumplings & More specialises in the cuisine of Dongbei, otherwise known as Northeast China or Manchuria, and which borders Korea, Russia and Mongolia.
Xenia Food Store is manned by the same people behind Philhellene in Moonee Ponds, a stalwart of Greek and Cretan dining.
Half the menu descriptors on Colourful Yunnan’s menu had the word ‘spicy’ or a chilli symbol beside them, so this restaurant isn’t for you if you’re not partial to chilli.