Best Raclette Cheese Places in Melbourne

Best Raclette Cheese Places in Melbourne

How good is Raclette! The first time we encountered the magical world of Raclette we fell in love. We gathered around the Raclette "machine" where a wheel of premium cheese was blistering and bubbling under the heat in awe. Then with a scrape of a knife the theatre and aroma of raclette drew us in with wonder. Not to mention the taste of the oozy cheese - often paired with pickles, mushrooms or cornichons. Scraping the cheese into a small bowl, you are set for a session of bliss, especially if you pair it with say a dry white wine or a pinot noir. The joy of France and Switzerland is to be enjoyed here in Melbourne. 

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Stunning New Dishes at CH James Cafe in Fairfield

Stunning New Dishes at CH James Cafe in Fairfield

CH James has released several exciting new dishes on their menu and The World Loves Melbourne joined with other leading bloggers in Melbourne to experience the newbie dishes for brunch.

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Best Melbourne Cafes

Best Melbourne Cafes

 

Best cafes in Melbourne is a mix of new and emerging cafes together with icons that are well established cafes.  We celebrate Melbourne's best cafes in the search for perfection. Melbourne is best known for it's thriving cafe scene, often to be found in laneways. We are constantly eating out at Melbourne's top cafes and consider the standard to be high.

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CHE - Melbourne's New Next Level Chicken Shop

CHE - Melbourne's New Next Level Chicken Shop

CHE taps into the Australian chicken shop dream and The World Loves Melbourne was invited to sample some of the menu at the launch. We love the name - sounds like the name of a revolutionary (and it is a revolution) - but CHE stands for Chicken/ Heledos/ Empanadas as well as "mate" in Spanish (clever). CHE has a modern fit out and is in the heart of Fitzroy on the corner of Johnston St and Brunswick St (look for the neon letters in the windows at night).

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Bontempo Restaurant A Pizza Revelation on Brunswick Street

Bontempo Restaurant A Pizza Revelation on Brunswick Street

Bontempo is a fabulous option for a catch up to imbibe the best of pizza (one of the best pizza restaurants in Melbourne) in a modern hospitable environment and - wait for it - reasonable drink prices. The World Loves Melbourne was invited along to experience some of the menu.

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The Big Sick Movie Review - Hilarious and Heartwarming

The Big Sick Movie Review - Hilarious and Heartwarming

The Big Sick is a must-see hilarious and heartwarming movie, releasing in cinemas on August 3 2017. See the trailer. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to a preview of the film at the Gold Class cinemas at The Jam Factory on Chapel St South Yarra. Seeing the film together in Gold Class as a couple was perfect and the film is so relatable to modern relationships.

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Trunktown Restaurant - A great Melbourne Dining Experience

Trunktown Restaurant - A great Melbourne Dining Experience

Trunktown has been a favourite of ours for several years and is a venue we consider to be quintessentially Melbourne in terms of architecture and expression. The Diner section has been the place for some favourite events and moments but the restaurant offers a delightful casual dining experience that borders on fine dining. We were invited to the restaurant to sample the new menu, which provides both a Middle Eastern selection and an Italian selection, reflective of the owners.

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The Influence of Spain in Peruvian Cuisine Event at Pastuso Restaurant

The Influence of Spain in Peruvian Cuisine Event at Pastuso Restaurant

Pastuso Restaurant was the perfect venue for a cracking event featuring two of Melbourne's best chefs, Alejandro Saravia and Jesse Gerner, and an extraordinary insight into Peruvian cuisine. The event was part of the Pep Alliance series of events hosted by iconic foodie, author and identity Hilary McNevin. The theme of Spain v Peru was brilliant and topical in celebrating Peruvian Independence Day, and it explored the relationship between Spanish and Peruvian cooking. Our table raised a glass or two of Pisco sour to Peru on this great occasion!

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St Moritz Restaurant and Bar Hits the Mark in St Kilda

St Moritz Restaurant and Bar Hits the Mark in St Kilda

St Moritz is a stunning new addition to Acland Street as a top notch bar and casual restaurant for your next catch up. It's a new addition but pays tribute to yesteryear with a neon replication of the dancing dirl from the St Moritz Ice Rink that used to exist at the location from 1929 to 1981. The venue is modern but also incorporates St Kilda grunge with exposed brick and quirky artwork. 

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Frank's A Crowd Pleaser Cafe in Cheltenham

Frank's A Crowd Pleaser Cafe in Cheltenham

Frank's is one of the best cafes in Melbourne and The World Loves Melbourne was invited to sample dishes from the ever evolving menu. The cafe is called Franks partly because it offers frank and authentic honest food. It seeks to give the punters what they want, and we think it successfully does that. No pretension, just fine food in a chic modern environment, with owner Harry Butler at the helm.

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The House of Wine and Food Restaurant Making A Mark in Port Melbourne

The House of Wine and Food Restaurant Making A Mark in Port Melbourne

The House of Wine and Food is a distinctive foodie destination in Melbourne. How many restaurants can actually claim that? Often there can be a sameness about Melbourne dining experiences - many cafe menus are mirrors of each other and even restaurants serving up similar dishes. But for the discerning diner, The House of Wine and Food is a unique and exciting dining experience in Melbourne bringing French, Italian and Mediterranean classics and compelling bar and dining spaces.

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Kathmandu's 30th Anniversary Celebration

Kathmandu's 30th Anniversary Celebration

Kathmandu the legendary lifestyle and adventure brand recently celebrated its 30th anniversary. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to the celebration at stylish Smart Artz Gallery. 

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Pontoon A Casual Restaurant Hit in Stokehouse Precinct

Pontoon A Casual Restaurant Hit in Stokehouse Precinct

The Stokehouse Precinct launched sexy casual diner Pontoon and The World Loves Melbourne was invited to sample the savvy menu at this modern restaurant with stunning sea views.

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Join the Ice Skating Fun at Eastland

Join the Ice Skating Fun at Eastland

Attention all shoppers, Ice Skating is back in Ringwood with the launch of an Ice Skating rink in the Town Square at Eastland, running through until the end of August. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to a family event where we became one of the first to experience the ice skating fun at Eastland (our local).

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Raclette and Other New Dishes a Smash Hit at Merricks Creek Winery

Raclette and Other New Dishes a Smash Hit at Merricks Creek Winery

Raclette is one of the joys of life, and Merricks Creek have created a smash hit with their new Grilled Raclette cheese with potatoes and a side of cornichons. Customers are driving up from Melbourne for this raclette, as well as the other standout dishes and new release 2016 Pinot Noir at Merricks Creek Winery.

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Wilson & Market Restaurant A Labour of Love for Paul Wilson

Wilson & Market Restaurant A Labour of Love for Paul Wilson

Wilson & Market is an impressive 50-seater lifestyle cafe and 200-pax brasserie and bar, with stunning seasonal, delicious, ethical dishes by Paul Wilson and showstopper bathrooms designed by Kate Challis Interiors. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to a media launch to imbibe the produce driven high quality dishes of the Brasserie. This is one of those "go to" places where you know you're in a foodie haven, specifically in the fine hands of iconic chef Paul Wilson. 

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IDES $65 Sample Table Available Every Thursday Till End of Winter

IDES $65 Sample Table Available Every Thursday Till End of Winter

A sample table at IDES? Yes please! The World Loves Melbourne believes every Melbourne foodie should visit IDES. For us there's a sense of electricity and excitement both behind the creativity and the execution of the dining experience.

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Book for the Winter Season of Pep Alliance

Book for the Winter Season of Pep Alliance

Looking for gourmet distinctive foodie events? Pep Events presents the Pep Alliance with culinary icon Hilary McNevin as host. A superb winter season is open now for bookings. We think exceptional quality and value.

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CH James Cafe Sustainability Embraces Fairfield Community Garden

CH James Cafe Sustainability Embraces Fairfield Community Garden

CH James is setting the pace when it comes to cafe sustainability, storing up its weekly coffee grinds and food scraps for the last 2 years, and giving them to the fabulous Fairfield Community Garden. The World Loves Melbourne caught up with Kat from CH James and Ken and Annette from the Fairfield Community Garden to see how it all works, and go on a tour of the garden.

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Cannibal Creek Vineyard  a Gippsland Triumph

Cannibal Creek Vineyard a Gippsland Triumph

Cannibal Creek Vineyard (recently featured in Broadsheet) is just an hour East of Melbourne on the fringes of Gippsland and is one of those quiet achievers, in an area (Gippsland) that is on the fringe of emerging "big time" as a food and wine region. The World Loves Melbourne was invited on a famil to experience Cannibal Creek Vineyard and imbibe the delights of Gippsland.

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Stonebarn Truffles The Best We've Had and A Restaurant Hit

Stonebarn Truffles The Best We've Had and A Restaurant Hit

Stonebarn - remember the name. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to be part of a media event with Stonebarn Truffles, showcasing the excellence of the produce, at Sarti restaurant. Exceptional French Black Perigord truffles from Manjimup Western Australia.

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Taste of the Barossa Dinner with Secret Foodies

Taste of the Barossa Dinner with Secret Foodies

Celebrating paddock to plate produce and fine South Australian wine, our Taste of the Barossa event was held at Craft & Co in Collingwood. As an inner city foodie haven Craft & Co. was the ideal place to indulge in the standout South Australian wine-making region.

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TWLM attends Australian Bacon Week Launch at Quay Restaurant

TWLM attends Australian Bacon Week Launch at Quay Restaurant

Australian Bacon Week is one of the most popular events on the calendar, and being a prime consumer of Australian bacon ourselves, The World Loves Melbourne was delighted to celebrate the launch and presentations event at Quay restaurant in Sydney. Everyone has their favourite way to enjoy the magical meat, from savoury to sweet, breakfast to dessert, and Victoria’s best Aussie bacon has just been revealed.

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Australia’s Young Gun of Wine Awards

Australia’s Young Gun of Wine Awards

Australia’s wine industry came together to celebrate the top young Australian winemakers, and the future of the industry looks bright.  Young Gun of Wine, the premier wine show for new trailblazing winemakers in Australia, recently announced the winners of its coveted 2017 awards.

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Food

The World Loves Attica: World's 50 Best

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Attica is a stunning hub of creativity and is rated the 32nd restaurant in the world by San Pellegrino World’s 50 Best restaurants. The World Loves Melbourne enjoyed a Chef’s Table evening at Attica, having to respond to a late cancellation or risk waiting another few months to secure a table. In a city of hot tickets, this is the hottest ticket!

Ben Shewry, the inspiration behind Attica is a softly spoken genius whose ethos is to make the food and the fine dining experience centre stage. In an industry of large egos, Ben Shewry is refreshing as a focussed visionary who manages to keep evolving. The passion here is for sustainability, natural and native ingredients and modern food techniques. 

Attica Interior 2015

Ben Shewry has had a perceived meteroric rise to fame, but his roots are humble on the farms of New Zealand where he cultivated a passion for cooking from an early age. After moving to Australia Ben took on the reins of Attica in the burbs with a vision for ground breaking cuisine but also a keen eye on the economics. 

Attica soon received wide acclaim and jettisoned to number 21 in the World’s 50 Restaurants. According to Ben Shewry this was not through fad or fortune but through “brutal hard work” and famous signature dishes gained traction such as “Snow crab” and the “Potato cooked in the earth it has grown”.

Attica Chef 2015

Ben loves the finer things in life but also gravitates to simple pleasures; to spend time with family, foraging and surfing. Ben Shewry is a proud New Zealander but now considers himself to be an Australian chef. We can claim Ben Shewry like we can claim Russell Crowe. Incidentally Melbourne has seen a domination of New Zeland chefs; thank God for the ANZACS.

We are captivated by  the simple menu descriptions such as “Ox and Carrot” for example, but you know there’s a machination of sophisticated processes in preparing these simply described dishes.

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A lack of hype is evident; with the extraordinary food and fine service doing the talking. Says the website, “Ben believes that food can have a deeper meaning than just another item to consume; it can be evocative, emotional and thought provoking, appealing to all of the senses. Of course the key to all this is that it tastes of the purity of its ingredients and is something delicious to eat.”

Ben Shewry and his team inspire the creative side of us all by the kitchen process and formation of dishes. The World Loves Melbourne was taken to the Attica testing kitchen out the back by one of the chefs Matthew, who told us how the team arrives early on Tuesdays to hear the new ideas from Ben. The Attica team then spends hours making the dishes that are in Ben’s imagination. Ben asks the chef sto create the new dishes; then sends them back to the chefs with corrections and additions until they get it right.

It’s like a band meeting where Keith Richards gets a riff and Mick adds the lyric. (Or translate to say Dave Guetta and dance beats).  The chefs have only a matter of hours before the Chef’s Table dinner service to perfect dishes they’ve never seen before. Even hearing about this causes The World Loves Melbourne to identify with the sweat and pressure of the process. But this process keeps the restaurant constantly evolving.

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From the creative experimental tasting kitchen and Chef’s Table evenings, the great dishes are forged and go on the main menu for Wed-Sat service. Let's face it though, this is an experimental kitchen with professionals not amateurs. It's not like throwing a dart blindfolded; more like landing a fighter jet to reach the target.

Says Ben Shewry, “Six years ago chef’s table was born out of a desire to progress faster with the development of our cuisine, throw caution to the wind and to offer guests more variety at a reasonable price.” We like this regard for affordability. Sure it's fine dining of the highest quality; but you don't feel like there's a price gouging going on. It's worth every cent.

“ The menu is a living breathing thing that evolves week to week. I work on it during the weekend and let the seasons dictate what they may in terms of ingredients; many of the dishes are inspired by memories of my childhood in rural New Zealand and by sights of nature and life that I discover on my drive to work from my home on the Bellarine Peninsula. Some dishes are just inspired by common sense and beautiful produce.”

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Like all top restaurants dining at Attica is not one dimensional but the full sensory experience.  Ripponlea is a well-heeled suburb but is away from the CBD, you enter Attica to be greeted by impeccably presented professional experienced floor staff.  In fact the best. The restaurant is like a theatre with black stage curtains and spotlights that shine on the tables (as if they are a stage).

We are told this is Chef’s Table night with diners in the hands of Attica chefs, all 18 of them, and menus are not supplied until the end of the night. (We managed to secure one at the start of the night for blogger purposes).

The service is world class. We are used to one or two waiters dedicated to our table for the night at most restaurants. Attica provides a team of high-class wait staff (maybe 6 or 7 visited our table) that work as a highly professional unit. They notice when you need more of their house made sparkling mineral water or wine, explain the dishes and processes perfectly, and expertly gauge the pace of the evening’s dining. Allow yourself 4-5 hours for the full experience.

The Wine List is extensive with perfect mix of local and international wines; consistent with a world-class restaurant. We were offered the matching wine menu (which was perfect and exciting) but instead ordered a French Syrah. Maybe we revealed our weaknesses as the matching wines were mostly whites and we had a penchant for reds no matter what.

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Of course we enjoyed a gin to begin; Four Pillars from Victoria.

The food begins with a delightful starter of house made Wattle seed bread enjoyed with soft cultured butter and salt, as well as a compelling macadamia puree. Already we are happy. We are offered more of this dish as the night progresses in between courses.

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Whipped Corn and Sorrel seems a simple dish, but loads of complexity has gone in to whipping the corn and getting the right texture.  This was a refreshing creamy earthy dish. To be honest we are told the processes involved but its so complex we can't take it all in.

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What to do with a prawn?  How about grilling it within tiny capsules of cucumber? Prawn Grilled in Cucumber was a rewarding dish that had the Attica stamp on it of honouring natural ingredients. Delicate but compelling.

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Peter Gunn the sous chef comes to our table, for a delightful chat, fresh from winning the Asia Pacific S. Pellegrino Young Chef Award 2015. He's a much admired chef of The World Loves Melbourne. We also respect Ben Shewry for the relationship he has with Peter Gunn. If Ben has been an influence we can see it in the sheer passion Peter has for natural ingredients. Peter Gunn's profile is on the rise and Ben gives him space and celebrates his success.

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Potato Crisps and Cheese Cream came as a surprise. Desiree potatoes cut in to fine strips and crispy served on top of raw egg yolk and underlying cheese cream. Again this was a refreshing dish with the interplay between crisps and raw egg yolk a texture contrast. The dish was a shock to my dining colleague Mark (CEO of a successful finance company in Melbourne).

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Carrot and Ox was a highlight with carrots cut into fine strips and made into capsules with peas inside. You then added earthy flavoursome rich ox inside the carrot capsules for a rustic dish. Dish of the night. We thought this could transcend the experimental tasting kitchen and make it to the grand field.

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All these dishes are innovative and clever. All honour natural ingredients. There was an electricity about placing your trust in the chefs and awaiting their experimental offerings.

Dessert of White Peach and Almond Cake was a delightful dish, which celebrated the flavour and texture of the peach. The almond cake was first class but played second fiddle to the superb peach flavours. This is the kind of dessert The World Loves Melbourne enjoys; not the sickly sweet offerings of some restaurants. After all, this is the end of the meal; we desire something clean and cleansing.

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The final course was the famous Pukeko’s Egg, which came with a picture of a painting from Ben Shewry’s father and a description from Ben Shewry. The dish pays homage to Ben Shewry’s New Zealand roots and is a delicate rich dessert with salted caramel and chocolate. You have to get inside the ethos and emotion here; and imbibe the hit of salted caramel and chocolate.

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Coffee was a delightful cold drip from El Salvador. Even this was a triumph; not a standard latte but an explosion of fruit across the palate in cold drip style.

We are taken out to the adjacent garden where exotic edible plants are growing. Joy. Sustainability is at the fore with our host Heewun telling us the garden used to be the staff car park until they converted it, and now staff use public transport. Only a 3 minute walk away Attica has a further large kitchen garden at iconic Ripponlea Estate. I remarked to Mark that Heewun would be a superb manager in his business. Or a star in anyone's business. So consumate. One of the best we've seen. 

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Heewun tells us some plant here has the taste of mushroom that one in four people in the world can discern. Of course we can taste the mushroom nuance, feeling good about ourselves.

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We get to check out the test kitchen where the magic happens with chef Matthew, walking past Ben Shewry’s impressive book collection and office. It's a space where the chefs often congregate in the morning.

All in all, the Chef’s Table evening was spectacular and intense in process; with Ben telling us “This evening’s food takes about 50 hours to produce.” 

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An exciting development is that Attica is renovating over Christmas and in the new year will feature an open kitchen where it’s 18 chefs will be on display, adding to the theatre.

The team here is a large happy family with chefs telling us Ben Shewry is great to work for.

Attica remains as popular as ever 10 years on. Reservations for December were booked out in 43 seconds when they went on line in September.

Apart from the Chef’s Table evenings, the Wednesday to Saturday affair is more comprehensive for a four-hour dining experience.

We left as believers; keen to return. 

We also recommend Ben Shewry and Attica featured on Netflix with the Chef’s Table series.

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