Not to be overshadowed by its paternal figure upstairs, Stokehouse Café straddles St Kilda beach with its own youthful energy, bringing classic beachside culture to the fore.

In an effort to reconnect with the old St Kilda foreshore and retain the classic elements of the retro beach shack it once was, the Stokehouse Café features an expansive bar made of rough-cut natural timber, positioned front and centre right on the beach. Continuing the nostalgic undercurrent, iconic imagery of St Kilda’s glory days line the walls, paying tribute to the late photographer Rennie Ellis, whilst a light palette replaces the venue’s darker visage of years gone by.

After seven years as a chef at the 1–2 hat restaurant upstairs, Nick Mahlook descended the stairwell to become head chef of Stokehouse Cafe, unveiling lunch and dinner seven days and breakfast on weekends. The menu is an amalgam of Spanish, Mexican, Italian, Greek and Argentinean fare, with a focus on simplicity and quality produce.

The Spanish Josper charcoal oven and open flame spit and coal pit grill are a first in Melbourne, cooking at up to 900 degrees and reeling out charcoal roasted chicken, daily spit roasts and a chilli dog to boot.