As it stands, restaurants in the Geelong area can trade with dine-in guests under heightened health and safety measures. So if you live local, make a booking and show that support to the hospitality scene while enjoying a meal that’s likely to be far better than that isolation cook-up you had planned. For those who’d prefer to stay indoors, take a look at the delivery and takeaway options available.
Whichever way you decide to take it, give the best restaurants Geelong has to offer a scan, then pick up the phone and make that call—or, open that app.
Two-hatted diner, Restaurant Igni, is easing back into things with a set menu for lunch from Tuesday to Friday. Owner Aaron Turner’s fire-driven style of cooking has given Igni a rep as one of the best restaurants in Victoria, and the afternoon tasting menu is set to hero exactly that. Bookings are essential, and you can make one from Wednesday 15 July.
Tulip place a strong emphasis on scouting their ingredients from local and sustainable farms, so you can rest easy knowing you’re supporting the community when dining at this modern charmer. The dishes are produce-driven, with many designed to share, like the signature kangaroo tartare or pistachio and duck terrine.
Tulip is open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday, as well as lunch from Thursday to Saturday. Get in touch to book.
After a short hiatus during lockdown round one, one of Geelong’s best restaurants, Zigfrid’s, has reopened. For those not familiar, Zigfrid’s is a modern take on Middle Eastern and contemporary Australian cuisine. Much of the menu is designed to share; it’s refined, but you won’t find any pretentiousness in any of the dishes—just take the slow cooked lamb shoulder with cracked wheat, lentil pilaf and labna for example.
Book a table at this warm and welcoming dining hall here.
The delicate flavours of French cuisine can be found in Geelong, and Bistrot Plume have got it down to a tee. Currently, the team are operating from Thursday to Sunday at various mealtimes through the day and evenings. All menus are worth your time, but it’s brunch on Sunday that can’t be missed—do yourself a favour and order the wagyu bresaola with aged parmesan.
Bistrot St Jean
Bistrot St Jean is another worthy French eatery tucked away in Geelong. Co-owners Tony Ciach and Stephane McGlynn cite their passion for people as much as they do food, which are both apparent the moment you’re seated and Geelong’s friendliest eatery. Get started with baked oysters before making your way to the bricks au chèvre, which without a doubt the tastiest beetroot dish you’ll find in Geelong.
Wah Wah Gee
Wah Wah Gee by the foreshore offers bold, rambunctious Asian fusion at its finest. The seafood options is where it’s here (makes sense given the location); order up on the tempura whiting with sweet potato chips for a fancy version of your classic f&c’s, or cash in on the feed me takeaway deal which includes a mix of their all-stars like bao buns and Korean fried cauliflower.
Bookings for dine-in essential. Takeaway available on Uber Eats and Deliveroo.
Hot Chicken Project
Sometimes you just want to stuff your gob with fried chicken, and The Hot Chicken Project is the place to do that. Pair up the fried stuff with plenty of gin, plenty of natural wine and spice levels of your choice. You’ve got wings, you’ve got tenders and you’ve got burgers on offer. If for whatever reason you’re not feeling chicken, get on that fish sandwich stat.
Open for takeaway and dine-in under heightened health and safety measures.
Mr. Umami’s is doing things a little differently for the time being by operating only on Saturdays. Celebrate slogging through another week with either bottomless brunch at $70 per head or Bottomless dinner at $90 per head. Both sittings will score you four courses of Asian fusion—which is all made from scratch in-house—along with two hours worth of cocktails, beer and wine. Not bad at all. Bookings essential, but you probably worked that out by this point.
Once you're finished dining, check out the best shows on Netflix for a post-feed binge.
Image credit: Tulip Bar and Restaurant