Richmond: a changing culinary landscape

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Richmond, also know as ‘the island’, is one of Melbourne’s most recognisable inner suburbs.

Home to the MCG and most of Melbourne’s sporting precinct, when people think of eating out in Richmond they often think of a parma and pint after the footy. But there is so much more to Richmond than great pubs.

Due to the rich Vietnamese heritage in the area, the Victoria Street strip is a favourite for banh mi and pho. Not only this, but there are plenty of options for Japanese, dumplings and many other South-East Asian favourites. Jinda Thai is a well known haunt for locals, with tightly booked tables and delicious, chilli filled dishes. Tran Tran is a traditional Vietnamese eatery, with more noodle soup on the menu that you can poke a stick at!

Bridge Road on the other hand is known for its factory outlet shopping, but increasingly, the cafe scene is matching the shops and pubs. With major players like Axil Coffee opening up Mayday Coffee and Food and a boom in boutique coffee in every cafe between Church and Burnley street, it isn’t unusual for a Saturday morning on Bridge Road to be pumping with active-wear clad brunchers and their dogs.

When the sun goes down, there are plenty of watering holes to enjoy either a pint or something a little more refined. Classic pubs like the Mt View rooftop, The Bridge Hotel or the Spread Eagle Hotel are all great options, but if you want a wine or cocktail bar you can find plenty around too. The Collection Bar is an American themed bar with delicious bar food, cheap cocktails during happy hour and a great vibe. Or for something a little different, LadyBoy Dining and Bar has great Thai food and a brilliant outdoor courtyard for cocktails and share food.

And who can forget Swan Street? While not even five years ago it was full of empty shops and the iconic Dimmeys Complex now, there are many great restaurants ranging from casual bite to nice family dinner. It is impossible to go past The Beer and Burger Bar, one of the first of the new wave of ‘cool’ places in this part of Richmond. Whether you are grabbing a burger before the footy, or enjoying the $2.50 pots on a Tuesday, the staff are friendly and the food is infallible. Speaking of burgers, Sydney giant Chur Burgers have also just moved into Swan Street – let the burger battle begin!

If you are wanting something a little more fancy, try Meatmother for a BBQ feast, or Feast of Merit for a middle-eastern inspired, ethical experience. Or, if Greek is more your scene you have the upmarket Bahari or George Columbaris’ Jimmy Grants to choose from.

So next time you’re going to the footy, don’t settle for a pie and chips but grab a meal and drinks somewhere in this brilliant suburb – the choices are endless.

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