Good Friday Coffee

Long weekends are the best but lets face it, trying to find a coffee on those public holidays can be the worst. To help you all along (as I am so very helpful), I’ve put together a list of places open for coffee on Good Friday. If there is nothing close to you, please don’t fret as this list will grow as the week goes on and more come to light. Feel free to add you local in the comments or email me at if I miss you.

St Ali (12-18 Yarra Place, South Melbourne) – Open 7am-6pm for food and coffee

Einstein’s Relative (1/9 Yarra St, South Yarra) – Open 7.30am-2.30pm and are donating $1 of all coffees sold to the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Beavers Tail Social Club (160 Barkly St, St Kilda) – Open from 8am-12pm for coffee and hot cross buns

Hobba (428 Malvern Road, Prahran) – Open 8am-3pm for food and will be donating a $1 from each coffee sold to the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Depot de Pain Black Rock (28 Bluff Rd, Black Rock) – Open 7am-2.30pm with full service

Einstein’s 251 (251 Hawthorne Rd, Caulfield) – Open 7.30am-2.30pm and are donating $1 of all coffees sold to the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Platform Espresso (1529 High St, Glen Iris) – Open from 8am-12pm for coffees

Baba Sus Cafe (15-17 Bardoph St, Glen Iris) – Open from 8am-1pm for food and coffees

Little Chloe (1810 Malvern Rd, Malvern East) – Open from 8am-1pm for coffee and brunch

Hardware Socitete (120 Hardware St, Melbourne) – Open from 8am-2pm for breakfast and lunch (bloody love the baked eggs here)

Bowery to Williamsburg (125 Hardware St. Melbourne) – Open from 8am-2pm for breakfast and lunch.

The Arboury (Flinders Walk, Melbourne) – Open all day for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Cherry and Twigs (1B, 555 Flinders Lane, Melbourne) – Open from 7.30am-2.30pm for coffee, breakfast, lunch and hot cross buns.

Depot de Pain at The Blackman (452 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne) – Open 6.30am-2.30pm for breakfast and lunch

Hard Pressed (76 Wellington Prd, East Melbourne) – Open for 8am- 4pm for breakfast and lunch

Industry Beans (3/62 Rose St, Fitzroy) – Open with full service from 8am-4pm

Depot de Pain at Rathdowne Village (693 Rathdowne St, Carlton) – Open 7am-2.30pm for breakfast and lunch

Green Park Dining (815 Nicholson St, Carlton North) – Open from 7am-11pm

Little Henri (850 High St, Thornbury) – Open from 9am for breakfast and lunch

Fat Penguin (713 High St, Kew East) – Open from 8am-3pm for breakfast and lunch

Scarvelli Cafe (143 Whitehorse Rd, Balwyn) – Open from 9am=2pm for breakfast and lunch

Duchess of Spotswood (87 Hudsons Rd, Spotswood) – Open from 9am – 3pm for breakfast and lunch

Winners of the Aldi Hot Cross Bun Competition

A couple of weeks ago, the kind people at Aldi gave me the chance to give away a few prize packs of their hot cross buns including some of their specialty Belgium chocolate and sour cherry buns. A big thanks to all of you who took the time to enter and a big thanks to Aldi for giving me the opportunity to see their set up and give away a few of their hot cross buns while making absurd bun puns. The winners have been drawn and notified, yay for winners and their buns!

Beer, Birthdays and (Hot Cross) Buns

So the past few weeks have been a right blur of busyness and frivolity thanks to the Melbourne Food and Wine festival but now that that is done we can all take a bex and have a good lie down right? Wrong! Melbourne may be a little quieter but there is still so many exciting and fun things happening.

What’s Coming Up in Melbourne

The program for Good Beer Week  (16th-24th May)  was launched at last weekends amazingly successful beer show case and it has, indeed, proved to be a corker. With events ranging from food matching to beer 101 to board games and brews, there is something to suit all tastes and budgets, from the reluctant starter to the aficionado.

The Happiest Hour, one of my most favorite Aps, is turning 11! On the 27th May from 4pm at Grumpy Greens, they will be celebrating with $1 wings, $5 chilli dogs, $6 pints, $5 wines and $5 spirits. Check out their Facebook page for more information.

Also having a Birthday is the marvelous Section 8 who are turning 9 . Join them on Sunday 22nd of March for an afternoon of tunes, visual instillation and of course, a pop up chicken bar set up by the guys at Belleville. Go to their Facebook invite for more details.

On Thursday 19th March, why not wonder down to The Royston (12 River St, Richmond) and check out a free beer tasting and masterclass as they turn their taps over to local brewers, Wolf of the Willows. Come and sample some of their fantastic brews and hang about for the Roystons $17 steaks. Will be a fabulous night.

This Saturday, the 21st March, come and learn about Burgundy as my mate Phil, the wine man, entertains you with tastings of wine from the region as well as having on hand experts to explain the area and it’s wine. There will also be some tasty nibbles provided by Mezzo all for the amazing price of $10 a ticket, more details here.

Don’t forget, St Patrick’s day is the 17th of March. Once again, I have your back on where to go and what to do for the day here…you’re welcome!

I have a brand new competition for you all. Aldi have given me 6 prize packs of Hot Cross Buns to give away to 6 lucky people. Enjoy a pack containg 2 x fruit buns, 2 x choc chip buns and 2 x sour cherry and Belgium chocolate buns. For more details, check out the competition page here.

Coffee, Pop ups and all things green

I was going to bore you all again with a list of things I like (you can never have too many lists) but it turns out that there are far too many interesting things going on in Melbourne at the moment so I thought I’d tell you about them instead.

What’s coming up

One of the biggest things happening soon is MICE, the Melbourne Intentional Coffee Expo is on once again from the 13th-15th March at the showgrounds. Watch the coffee competitions with baristas from around the country and the world plus get the chance to sample some of the best coffees as pronounced by the Australian International Coffee Award panel of judges. There are a range of ticket options from 1 day passes to showcase passes starting at $25 a head.


Noisy Ritual is Melbournes first interactive winery and they are bringing the mysteries of the wine world to 130 High St, Preston. Every Saturday night until the 4th of April, they will be hosting their very own pop up bar with snacks, beers and of course their own wine.

Photo by Tajette O'Halloran

Photo by Tajette O’Halloran

A new pop up out north has popped up in the most surprising of places. Pentridge Prison are hosting the Hope Thief Bar in the old D division each Friday from 3pm till 10pm. With pulled pork rolls, steak sandwiches, beers and more, it’s the kind of bar you’ll want to be behind.

One of Australia’s most love craft brewers Feral brewing are taking over the taps at Forster’s Hall in what will be known as the Festival of Feral. On the 27th and 28th March, all the taps will be given over to Feral beers, many of which have not been seen in Victoria before. Bluebonnet will be there providing food and there will be prizes, line dancing, giveaways and more.

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One of my favourite groups, Scarf, have announced their Autumn Dinner series to take place at Green Park in North Carlton. Scarf are a group that  train, and mentor young refugees and asylum seekers in hospitality skills with the view to them gaining ongoing employment. Dinners at Green Park start on the 17th March and take place every Tuesday until 12th May and are just $40 for 2 courses which is stunning value. For bookings to the dinner simply email but be quick, they do book out.

On the 21st of March, Prahran Market are hosting a Greek Fiesta. Enjoy roving musicians playing a range of Traditional Greek Music, Greek Cooking demonstration in the Blanco Kitchen, Greek Dancing and Greek Band in the Market Square 1pm to 3pm, kids activities at Harvest Hall, Greek Street Food in the Market Square including: Hellenic Hotdogs ,Taki’s Balls and Sweet Greek.

Last but not at all least, the 17th of March is St Patrick’s Day, one of my favourite days of the year. With all kinds of places trying out their luck, I’ve put together a list of where to go and what to do on the day. With events such as breakfast at The Last Jar or P.J. O’Briens, Whisky tasting at Left Bank or a VIP tent at Dan O’Connells, you’ll find something that makes you smile.


March in Melbourne

Writing a post is always one of the most difficult of things I do each week and this weeks has not been made easier by all the fantastic goings on of the last week (oh my poor liver) as well as so many brilliant up and coming events that are on in March. You’d think it would be easier with so much going on but alas, it actually murky up the water, what do I put in? What do I leave out? WHY CAN’T I HAVE ALL THE THINGS?!

Before I go into to much detail about what is going to be happening, I need to tell you about the most terrific new bar I found last Monday. I sort of invited myself to the launch of Belleville, a wine bar/cocktail bar/beer joint in Globe Alley in the city. I honestly was only going to stay for a drink or 2 (no, really!) but was absolutely blown away by the whole shebang. Great drinks list, great decor and they served what could be the best rotisserie chicken in Melbourne. They are open for lunch, dinner and late night snacks and definitely going to be a go to of mine for any business meetings/mysterious blind dates/top secret assignations that I may be involved with.

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Another brilliant thing I discovered in the city was the City Wine Store or more to the point I discovered they had a beast called $10 mystery wine Monday. Each Monday, a staff member picks a wine, it gets decanted and you get a glass and have a go at guessing. No prizes except for feeling like a massive clever clogs if you get it right but it is great fun and good value.

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What’s on in March

To really appreciate something, you need to understand how it is made. Fortunately for us, Vinteloper is bring his Urban Wine Project to Melbourne for the first time ever so that we can do just that. Learn how to make wine and participate in the crush while enjoying amazing food from Pot and Pan. Urban Wine Project will run on the 4th, 11th and 18th March and tickets are $85 a head. Book quickly to get your chance to play in this unique event.

The Australian Distilled Spirits Awards were judged last week at the Showgrounds now the votes are being tallied and the winners are to be announced at High Spirits on the 5th March at The Apartment. Rub shoulders with some of the best in the Australian spirit world while finding out who got the nod.

One event that I am looking forward to is Get Shucked at Richmond Oyster on the 8th March. Tickets are $59 and involve unlimited oyster plus a drink on arrival so this completely my version of heaven. I am backing this up with an appearance at MARCS laneway festival (as I have declared the 8th to be the unofficial laneway day). Music, fashion, food and culture all get together for a day of Papa Goose, Pastuso, Terra Rossa and The Swiss Club, will be serving a selection of their dishes, hawker style. Monkey Shoulder whisky cocktails will be mixed by Eau De Vie.

On Labour Day (9th March), head to Circa for a Meat Feud where 6 vendors will battle it out for your taste buds. Tickets are $49 a head and include 6 tastes with drinks at the bar.

Good Beer Week starts in May but to get the hop on what’s happening (see what I did there?) get your butts to Fitzroy on the 13th or 14th March for the Beer Gala Showcase. Tickets are $40 and give you 20 x 60ml pours plus you also get a food truck token. It will also be the occasion where the Good Beer Week program will be launched so you can grab your copy and plan your May. If you see a tallish, oldish, plumpish, blondish female on the door, be nice as that will most likely be me.

On the last day of the Food and Wine Festival is Fromage a Trois, a cheese and cider festival at Werribee park mansion. With 12 different cheese makers and 14 craft cider makers plus masterclasses and demonstrations makes for a fun day out in the semi sort of country.

If you are looking to restock your wine cupboard but would like to try before you buy, The Botanical are hosting their annual Autumn Wine Market. Tickets are just $10 a head and you get to sample over 50 wines plus a roast pork roll and a Riedel tasting glass for you to take home with you.

There is so much more on so be sure to check out the events calender for updates and also a list of what’s on for St Pats day in Melbourne which will be out sometime this week (a Tuesday this year so get that leave day in)

The Best Things in Life Are Free

Friday sees the start of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, a festival that spans from the 27th Feb to the 15th of March and includes over 300 different events both in Melbourne and in Regional Victoria. While there are amazing events which all provide brilliant value for money, I wanted to focus on some of the festivals, galas and masterclasses that don’t cost a thing. Alright, so you need to buy your food and drinks but all the entertainment and learnings that are happening? They’re free!

To start with, lets talk about the Open Kitchen, a huge event taking place on 28th Feb-1st March and runs from Birrarung Marr to South Wharf, playing host to 10 different events including Crowns Alfresco Kitchen where Crowns restaurants open their doors for you to sample some of their signature dishes,  MCEC Food Truck Jam where the Exhibition Centres lawn will be covered with some of Melbournes finest food trucks, South Wharf which will be transformed into a Hawker style market for a family friendly day of food, music and entertainment and Sweet Alley with treats from Lux Bites, Burch and Purchase, N2 Gelato and more.

If you’re looking to stay out of the city, Richmond’s Bridge Rd are hosting a Global Gathering on the 1st March. A great chance to check out some of the fabulous multicultural dining experiences from one end of the rd to the other. With tasting plates starting at only $5 plus masterclass, cooking demos, tuk-tuks and even dance classes. Don;t forget to get your passport stamped to go into the running to win a $3000 Smeg kitchen prize.

South Melbourne Market are once again playing host to the Port Phillip Mussel Festival, a fabulous seafood themed street party running the weekend of the 7th-8th March. There will more mussels than your muscles can carry, mussel paella, drunken mussels, plus an array of sangria and craft beer, artisanal ice cream and fun for the kids.

Out west, you can head to the Seddon Festival on the 7th March, with entertainment spread over three stages, food, wine and beer tastings and the infamous waiters’ race the day promises great fun for locals and visitors.

Head back into the CBD on the 8th March as the laneways of Duckboard Place and AC/DC Lane open up into a mix of music, art and food for the MARCS festival. With food stalls from Terra Rossa, Pastuso and Papa Goose, music from Cherry Bar and drinks from Mary Fortune and Eau de Vie it’s the place to be.

Speaking of amazingly fun free things to do, a reminder that Saturday 28th February is Craft Beer Rising Day, a day to celebrate all things craft beer. With over 25 events taking happening all over Victoria, its a great chance to meet the brewers, the enthusiasts, learn more about the burgeoning craft beer scene and make new drinking buddies.

What’s happening this week

Don’t forget there is still so much going on this week heading up to the Food and Wine Festival. I’m personally checking out Slipsmith Gin at the Everleigh with the Gin Queen in what will be Slipsmiths only consumer tasting in Melbourne. I’m also heading to the Windsor to find out more about my newest love, Italian wine at Gambero Rosso. This event will showcase Italian wine, some of which have not been seen in Melbourne before. Staying with the wine, I’ll also be attending (and by attending I mean working) at Return to Terroir, a Biodynamic wine showcase happening on the 28th Feb and 1st March at the Town Hall with more than 50 wines on show from some of the worlds leading Biodynamic wine experts.