Switch up Saturday-night rush hour for Tuesdays and lunch dates and you can eat at Melbourne's best restaurants for jack-all
The Grand Richmond
Hit the bar on Wednesday, spear your half duck and guzzle your pinot like a medieval baron, knowing your wealth is secure. Richmond.
An entrée and main of Maurice Esposito’s sustainable seafood is yours at lunchtime for $30. Jesus would be impressed. Carlton.
Chef Ben Shewry tests new dishes on a Tuesday. That’s a brain you want to be in, so volunteer as his guinea pig and save $30 on the usual five-course menu. Ripponlea.
Kill mid-week work rage with a numbing food coma. A suitably laden mezze plate of dips’n’bits followed by lamb shoulder Maltese-style ought to do it. Melbourne.
Whether you love or hate George Calombaris’s shiny dome, you can’t knock his noggin for business sense. Two courses of Greek glory for $37 make lunch at Press a prime CBD option. Melbourne.
A two-course lunch in the heart of St Kilda, including a glass of wine and coffee for less than the price of a single standard Di Stasio dish. Boom! St Kilda.
Bugger the queue. Rock up after 10.45pm for a taco party. You get fried tortillas, the compulsory corn, and a double serve of tacos and quesadillas for $22. El cheapo! Melbourne.
Your squid-ink risotto comes with an entrée or dessert, a glass of vino and the best view of the extra showoffy runners lapping Albert Park lake. Albert Park.
Winter’s a bitch. Still, early week antipasti, hearty wagyu papardelle, tiramisu and a glass of vino for a mere $45 in deepest St Kilda is ace. St Kilda.
You’ll need a pal to come, but the custom Sunday menus of shared starters followed by a main and dessert is the cheapest (and least girth-damaging) way to do Cutler. Fitzroy.
The Hit List: our guide to the essential Melbourne restaurants to conquer