Stuck for easy dinner ideas? Have a less-than-well-stocked pantry and can’t be bothered messing around in the kitchen? Or maybe you just want to splash out for no reason?
Melbourne’s restaurants have got you covered. While we wait with bated breath and crossed fingers for dine-in service to make a comeback, there are tons of options from the city’s best to enjoy at home.
Here are our top takeaway picks for this week.
Got an excellent new takeaway suggestion we should check out? Let us know.
Stokehouse (and Paper Fish)
Bayside institution Stokehouse has been serving topnotch seafood for decades, and things are no different during lockdown. With help from high-end restaurant supplier Clamms Seafood, it’s offering three fancy boxes to enjoy at home next weekend and in early November (so we recommend pre-ordering this week).
The seafood box includes eight oysters; a large crayfish (800-gram minimum) with tarragon dressing; (king) prawn cocktails; tuna crudo; kingfish; and cured ocean trout. There’s also a cook-at-home barbeque set with swordfish, skewers of Wagyu beef, calamari, king prawns, octopus, pork neck and oysters. And the bougie Bolli box is a next-level version of the seafood pack, with the addition of spanner crab and a bottle of Bollinger champagne. Each set feeds four to six people, and you can add cocktails and wine to your order.
If you’re after something more casual, Stokehouse’s beachfront kiosk Paper Fish has reopened for takeaway. Get crisp fish’n’chips, shucked-to-order oysters, calamari with chipotle mayo, and Japanese potato cakes. Plus, refreshing watermelon and mint granita.
Pre-order now for delivery on October 23, 24 and 31, and November 3, 5 and 7. Delivery through Clamms Seafood is available to metro Melbourne, Geelong, Bellarine Peninsula, Mornington Peninsula, Daylesford and Yarra Valley for a flat rate of $25, or pick-up at 30 Jacka Boulevard, St Kilda. The seafood box is $425, the barbeque box is $325 and the Bolli box is $600.
For the family picnic pack, choose any three of the restaurant’s curries – butter chicken, beef madras, lamb curry, dal makhani and chana masala – paired with samosas, rice, raita and pickles, plus a sixpack of Kingfisher beer.
There are also new snacks on the menu, including street-food favourites such as papdi chaat (which the diner describes as “the [Indian] version of nachos and salsa”); okra fries; samosas; and deep-fried cauliflower. And if you’re riding solo, the Takeaway Thali with two curries, rice, raita and papadams is a prime picnic pick. Order online for pick-up to get a 30 per cent discount on curries and rice. Bonus: Eddie Gardens is just a stone’s throw away.
Available every day for pick-up at 167 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North or delivery through Uber Eats and Deliveroo. The picnic pack costs $90 and serves five people, the Takeaway Thali is $15.
Ellie Bouhadana has Moroccan and Israeli heritage, but her travels through Rome and Tuscany made her fall in love with Italian food. Last year she started hosting Ellie’s Table pop-up dinners that combined all her culinary influences, and now you can get her food delivered through the Doorstep Dinner series.
Each week she prepares a three-course meal that’s easy to finish at home, transforming your dining room into an Italian trattoria. The menu usually includes her chewy and salty focaccia (or a salad); a main of fresh pasta (this week choose from rigatoncini alla vodka or casarecce with an aglio e olio base, Italian sausage, broccoli and wild fennel); and a luscious tiramisu with mascarpone, toasted hazelnuts and Dutch cocoa.
Available this Sunday for pick-up in Balaclava or delivery to a number of suburbs (enter your postcode here to check). Orders close on Friday at 8pm.
Fresh Off the Boat
When Peter Ling’s Vietnamese family arrived in Australia by boat as refugees in 1979, his parents started working as dishies. Eventually they opened Crystal Palace Catering, which specialises in traditional Asian banquets for weddings and events – and they’ve kept it up for almost 40 years.
Now, the family has launched a new business centred around casual Vietnamese dishes and DIY meal kits. It’s called Fresh Off the Boat, turning the derogatory term for immigrants on its head and reclaiming it as an homage to the Lings’ history, culture and cuisine.
Dishes include tender Wagyu pho with silky noodles and rich broth; grilled lemongrass chicken with broken rice and sweet nuoc cham (fish sauce); four kinds of crunchy spring rolls; and spicy beef and pork bun bo hue noodle soup. There are also a number of vegan and vegetarian options, plus snacks and desserts, including green-tea-flavoured popcorn and coconut jelly with lychee bits served in young coconut.
Available for delivery Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays for a flat rate of $5, check the full list of suburbs here. Order by 6pm for next-day delivery.
Beggs & Acon
The latest venture from the Mr Miyagi team trades Japanese fusion for something a little more pared-back: breakfast. Beggs & Acon focuses on just two things (or rather, one combination of two things): bacon and eggs, obviously.
The classic pairing features in all the dishes on the tight menu: a sweet and salty stuffed doughnut; an empanada with hollandaise for dipping; a hefty wrap; and the signature (self-proclaimed) “best egg and bacon roll in the world”, which comes from a family recipe shared by Miyagi executive chef Kyle Doody. There’s also house-made hash browns, and a number of toppings you can add on.
It’s a simple menu, but everything’s boosted by local produce and ingredients such as Bistro Morgan Bakehouse doughnuts, Burd eggs, Niccolo coffee, Prestige potatoes and bread from Bakers Delight. Originally intended as a weekend pop-up, Beggs & Acon is opening daily starting next week.
Open this Friday Sunday from 8am to 12pm, then Wednesday to Sunday starting next week. Pick-up only at 24 Chatham Street, Prahran.