The surprise food and drink hits that the city has to offer, from bratwurst to $5 paella to drinking like a fish, with the fish
Fight for the $5 paella at Claypots
See that impatient queue? They’re not there to order drinks. They elbowing their way towards snapping up Claypots’ fresh paella. Remember: the early bird gets the biggest serving. 213 Barkly St, St Kilda. (03 9534 1282). Nightly, 6pm. $5.
Shamelessly devour a Bogan Burger at the Napier Hotel
The whole menu is great but the Bogan Burger speaks for itself: steak, chicken schnitzel, caramelised onions, cheese, pineapple, beetroot, egg, potato cake (!), bacon, lettuce and tomato... and sides. 210 Napier St, Fitzroy. (03 9419 4240). $24.
Get aristocratic at the Windsor Hotel
Enjoy the tastes of royalty at High Tea at the esteemed Hotel Windsor. Serving a traditional afternoon tea since 1883, you’ll nibble on a delectable range of pastries, sandwiches, and – naturally – tea. The Hotel Windsor, 111 Spring St, Melbourne. (03 9633 6000). Mon-Sun 12 noon-2.30pm. $59 weekdays, $79 weekends. Bookings essential.
Find your favourite bratwurst at Queen Victoria Market
Sausage is the great equaliser: good for paupers and kings alike. Fuel your crowd-fight through the markets with a selection from the ever-revolving sausage varieties on the bratwurst menu. Shop 99, Deli Hall, 513 Elizabeth St, Melbourne. (03 9320 5822).
Relax with fish and chips at South Melbourne Beach
St Kilda is fun, sure – but to laze on the sand with salty fish-n-chips, why not head to South Melbourne instead? The Number 1 tram takes you right to the water. South Melbourne Beach, Beaconsfield Pde, South Melbourne.
Recover with weekend brekky at the Espy
Each weekend the hotel du rock offers up a tasty breakfast, from fi sh cakes to the Espy Burger and $10 Espy Special. Sit outside for one of the nicest views in Melbourne. 11 The Esplanade, St Kilda. (03 9534 0211). Sat-Sun 9am. $10-$25.
Unleash your appetite at all-you-can-eat yum cha
Ignore the hanging ducks in the window and secure a seat at the lazy susan. You’ll need some serious stamina to eat your way through all these a la carte goodies. Rize BBQ & Restaurant, 262 Brunswick St, Fitzroy. (03 9078 1862). Sat-Sun 11am-3pm. $15.80 cash only.
Hoe into a progressive tasting at Melbourne’s best eateries
Gather your food-obsessed friends and work your way though the city, progressive-dinnerstyle. Tours include noted restaurants like Cumulus Inc, Taxi Dining Room, The Kitchen Cat and Mezzo Bar and Grill. (0408 555 679). By appointment. 1-7pp $899.
Become a coffee expert at Seven Seeds
Do names like Don Pachi and Panama Esmeralda mean nothing to you? You’d better educate yourself at one of Seven Seeds’ cupping (read: blind coffee tasting) sessions stat. 114 Berkeley St, Carlton. (03 9347 8664). Thu 10am. FREE.
Defy gravity at Melbourne rooftop bars
The ultimate antidote to soaring mercury is a non-stop rooftop barhop. This elevated city circuit incorporates a cavalcade of silk parasols, cocktail jugs, cucumber sandwiches, deckchairs, palm trees and Astroturf. Madame Brussels, 59 Bourke St, Melbourne. (03 9662 2775). Mon-Sun 12 noon-1am. Rooftop Bar, Lvl 7/252 Swanston St, Melbourne. (03 9654 5394). Mon-Sun from 12 noon. Palmz at the Carlton, 193 Bourke St, Melbourne. (03 9663 3246). Siglo, Lvl 2, 161 Spring St, Melbourne. (03 9654 0811). Mon 8pm-3am; Tue-Fri 5pm-3am; Sat-Sun 8pm-3am.
Wet your whistle at the Melbourne Aquarium
Drinking and aquariums – together at last! Friday night drinks let you tour the entire aquarium while armed with bellinis, cosmopolitans and (hopefully non-seafood) treats, ending with dessert in the Fish Bowl. Cnr Kings Way & Flinders St, Melbourne. (03 9923 5915). Fri 6-8.30pm. $75.