Melbourne Restaurant Suggestions during the Australian Open?
My wife and I are going to be in Melbourne from 23-26 January for the Australian Open, and we were wondering if anyone has any suggestions for great casualk restaurants near the tennis stadium? We're going to many of the matches, so we don't have time for long, elaborate meals, but we'd like to eat in a couple of great Melbourne places while we're there. Staying at the Langham. Breakfast places too would be helpful. Italian, Australian restaurants preferred.
60 seconds walk from The Langham you have 3 excellent Melbourne restaurants - Scusa Mi (Italian, 1 Hat Good Food Guide, main course in the $30s), Pure South (Contemporary, main course in the 30s)and Tutto Bene (Italian, 1 Hat GFG, mains around $30). Another 5 minutes walk gets you to Rockpool, dearer than the above three, but very good as well.
Thanks to all for your help. We wound up going to Scusa Mi. Overall, the restaurant was better than average, although certainly not among the top restaurants we've been to, and disappointing value for the price. We had a risotto and Oso Bucco. Both were fine, but nothing special. Value, however, was another story. They came with nothing in the way of vegetables; those were all ala carte. The Oso Bucco was fine, and a decent portion. It was >$40; too expensive for what we got. The Risotto (Spinach & Mushroom) was over $30...way too much for what we got. Bread was ordinary, and wines were marked up 4X...outrageous. The service was relaxed and casual, probably too relaxed for what we paid. The tab (above entrees, 2 standard salads a bottle or mineral water and a $59 bottle of very ordinary Australian Sauvignon Blanc) was a very UNreasonable $167. Food was good, not great, and for those prices, it should have been better. Tutte Bene (next store) would have been a better bet.
The Botanical (Mod aust) (on Domain road, opposite the botanical gardens) is lovely for breakfast and dinner. (www.thebotanical.com.au)
Pearl in Richmond has really good breakfast http://www.pearlrestaurant.com.au/
Tutto Benne (Italian) at Southgate (right near where you stay) has awesome risotto. (www.tuttobene.com.au)
I heard Rockpool is a bit overrated but I haven't been there so I can't comment.
Taxi (Mod Aust) at Federation Square is really good too and it has a lovely lounge upstairs (Transit) tho I'm not a fan of that noisy pub downstairs - http://www.federationsquare.com.au/index.cfm?pageID=122
Ezard (mod Aust) on Flinders lane is really good too - http://www.ezard.com.au/
Have fun! Melb has soooo many good restaurants.
Rockpool is expensive and is the talk of the town at the moment however the produce is world class and some of its signature dishes are up there with the best. The prawn tortellini is ridiculous - still thinking about it and I went there over a month ago. I second Pearl for breakfast. Taxi is probably worth checking out given where you are staying - great wine list.