The best cafes, restaurants, bars, shops and events in the Melbourne CBD.

Restaurants

Pizza Pizza Pizza

Restaurant

Classic pizzas out front; one of Melbourne’s best-kept secrets out back.

Osteria Ilaria

Restaurant

A largely pasta-free zone next door to wildly popular older sibling, Tipo 00.

Tipo 00

Restaurant

Tipo 00 has an offering too good to refuse: carb-loaded, butter-drenched pasta.

Pho Thin

Restaurant

This is the first Melbourne location for one of Hanoi’s most famous pho spots.

Thai Town

Restaurant

Get pantry staples such as salted egg cakes and durian crisps, or grab seat among 200 other punters for charred pork skewers, tom yum soup, boat noodles and beer towers.

Chef David

Restaurant

This 160-seater has more than 100 ingredients on offer to cook in your choice of eight different soups – and it’s open until 2am.

Cafes

King St Espresso Bar

Cafe

An Italian standing-room-only espresso bar.

Wonder Pies & Deli

Cafe

Mac’n’cheese pies, banana and custard pancake pies, and rhubarb and liquorice dessert pies in a tiny shop that takes cues from Alice in Wonderland.

Higher Ground

Cafe

The team behind Kettle Black and Top Paddock go beyond cafes with this CBD spot inspired by hotel hospitality.

Lune Croissanterie CBD

Cafe

The second outpost for Melbourne's most revered croissants. Expect to queue for at least 15 minutes, if not longer.

Saint Dreux

Cafe

Fancy katsu sandos and high-quality coffee are the draws at this takeaway-driven spot inside the St. Collins Lane food court.

Sensory Lab Rialto

Cafe

This outpost from the coffee specialist puts food on the same pedestal as coffee and design.

Bars

Angel Music Bar

Bar

An audiophile playground for celebrated restaurateur Con Christopoulos that serves up lobster mac’n’cheese with a side of sub-bass frequencies.

Arlechin

Bar

Whether it’s spaghetti, duck liver parfait or tiramisu ice-cream pops, the Grossi family’s new venture will guarantee you’ll be eating (and drinking) in style, post midnight.

Byrdi

Bar

Drinks here include a boozy smoked-pear soda, and gin with jasmine and plum. Get yours alongside hibachi-grilled seafood.

Longsong

Bar

David Moyle’s atmospheric venue above Longrain will transport you someplace else.

Dessous

Bar

Lively cocktails, pork-belly sandos and gruyere croquettes are on the menu at this dark and daring basement bar.

The LuWow

Bar

Zombie cocktails, leopard print and tikis everywhere (obviously). Check your everyday life at the door – it’s pure fantasy here.

Shops

Punchin' Bottles

Shop

This wine shop by Embla’s Christian McCabe, winemaker Patrick Sullivan and importer Eric Narioo stocks interesting (and at times eccentric) small-batch and responsibly produced drops.

búl

Shop

Classical tailored pieces from city to sea by local designer Virginia Martin.

Weirdoughs

Shop

This tiny, technicolour Flinders Lane patisserie serves flaky croissants and fluffy doughnuts without the help of butter, milk or eggs.

Comme des Garçons

Shop

The Japanese label’s only Melbourne store.

Zimmermann

Shop

A stylish swimwear and clothing brand with boutiques across Melbourne.

Nique

Shop

Minimal, contemporary clothing favoured by creative professionals.