We’d like to think we’ve got our finger on Melbourne’s foodie pulse, and lately it’s been beating steady to the rhythm of something a bit different: all day dining. You know the places, the ones that morph from chilled brekky hangout to late-afternoon lunch spot, then transform again after 8pm when cocktails and candlelight take over and everyone mysteriously grows a moustache. Keeping the good times rolling from 7am ‘til late. That’s the new thing. It’s a European trend that feels right at home on Chapel St or Glen Huntly Rd, and we can kind of see the appeal. Now all we need is for siestas to become a thing…
Here are our three favs when it comes to all day dining in Melbourne.
Bang Bang At The Rifle Club
Now this is what we’re talking about. Open seven days a week, 7:30am – 11pm, Bang Bang At The Rifle Club is the best thing to happen to the Sandringham line since, well…okay it’s probably the best thing to happen to the Sandringham line. Formerly the Caulfield Rifle Club (hence the ‘Bang Bang’ bit) this place is classic French Indochina, with a modern twist. Up early? Head down for a sticky black rice congee with coriander and fried shallots, or maybe a cheeky confit duck cassoulet with white beans and a hit of chilli. As night falls, the lights dim, the exposed brick interior comes alive and the cocktails start flowing (usually in our direction). We recommend the Thai basil cucumber smash, muddled with Plymouth gin, pineapple juice and lime. All day, all delicious.
Abacus Bar & Kitchen
You can’t walk past Abacus on Chapel St and no be intrigued. For starters the place is huge, beautiful and buzzing at all hours, waiters in white t-shirts scurrying around, their arms full of Padre lattes and pumpkin croquettes loaded with goats’ cheese and avocado. On the weekends it’s open ‘til 1am (midnight on Fridays), and during the week the breakfasts start appearing bright and early at 7am. Abacus bakes its own bread and pastries from scratch, and you’ll get an unleavened slice of the good stuff on its day menu (check out the flat-iron steak with black mustard seed, bread and wasabi custard). At night the menu switches and the pizza oven fires up. Our pick of the bunch is the pancetta with crispy crackling, pork belly, Fior di Latte, red capsicum jam and jalapenos. Yum.
A French-style steakhouse that’s open from 7am ‘til midnight? There’s only one in town, and it’s Entrecote on Domain Rd. By night this place is an all-class Parisian bistro serving up tender Cape Grim Angus steak frites or autumn mushrooms (‘champignons’ if you remember your Grade 4 French) alongside Gruyère Pithivier and a fresh watercress salad. But drop by for brekkie on a Saturday morning and you’ll find crusty Pain au Chocolat (the perfect pre-Tan fuel), fruit toast from Noisette and a croquet monsieur that’ll knock your socks off: think hand-carved leg ham, three different cheeses and an oozy mustard béchamel. Audrey Hepburn once said, ‘Paris is always a good idea’, and the same applies to French food. Breakfast or bedtime, it’s never a bad time to béchamel.
All day dining is perfect for indecisive foodies, but what if you HAD to make a choice? Check out our latest Would You Rather.
Image credit: Michelle Jarni