Book a Business Lunch in Melbourne

Updated July 19th, 2022

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There's a right occasion for trying new restaurants. Business lunches aren't it. You want somewhere more classic. Somewhere safe, quiet and a little bit sophisticated. Attentive service is a must.

We've collected the city's best and they're bookable right here on Broadsheet. Stick to the top half if you're looking for something conservative. Further down the list, the white table cloths disappear and things get more fun and informal.

  • The tables at Bottega spill out onto the footpath much like they would in Rome or Florence, luring in passers-by with an energetic atmosphere. Mains usually feature produce from owner Denis Lucey’s farm, while an expertly curated wine list offers around 150 bottles from both Australia and Italy.

  • Like a fine Italian wine, Becco proves age is no barrier to quality. Focusing on the country as a whole rather than one specific region, the menu at this old-school eatery is a testament to the idea that – a lot of the time – simplicity is best.

  • Classic-but-contemporary dishes from Melbourne’s French-cuisine master.

  • If you’re after the gold standard for Cantonese cuisine in the city, look no further. Flower Drum’s been serving it since 1975. Its low-lit, seductive ambience and consistently impeccable service are reasons to visit alone.

  • A dependable brasserie serving French classics to the suited and booted.

  • Innovative Chinese-Australian fusion in a low-lit underground restaurant. More than a decade on, it remains one of the best places in Melbourne to try the lesser-seen cuisines of China's Yunnan, Hunan and Jiangxi provinces. While Sichuan food is king here, the entire menu is stylish, vibrant and well-balanced.

  • This is one of Melbourne's best Japanese restaurants. It's certainly its most ambitious. There's a New York-style sushi bar at street level, a pumping izakaya-style basement and an upstairs private dining room – Kuro – for intimate kaiseki-style meals.

  • Andrew McConnell's all-day eating house combines the star chef's typically excellent food with smart interior design. While it's not his most famous venue these days, the polished service, considered wine list and inventive dishes at Cumulus Inc. are still worthy of celebration after all these years.

  • It’s tricky to pin down Coda’s flavour-punching dishes. Modern Asian? Euro-Vietnamese fusion? Pop in pre-theatre for some scallops and a glass of wine, or do your next special occasion here. Coda is supremely versatile, and one of Melbourne’s best.

  • Indian flavours are far too uncommon at the top-end of dining, an issue Tonka has been smartly redressing for years. The wine list is a cracker, but we're more partial to the smart cocktail menu and its wealth of refreshing, South Asian-inspired mixes.

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  • This wine-slinging laneway bar was one of Melbourne’s first. Since 1994, it’s developed a loyal following for its expansive wine list, reliable service and Euro-leaning share plates (including an off-menu Portuguese fish stew).

  • The flavours at celebrity chef Shane Delia’s opulent Maha are familiar, but they’re assembled with more finesse than your average Middle Eastern restaurant. Vibrant mezze, a must-have lamb shoulder and an affordable wine list make this a winner for group dining.

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

  • Quincy Melbourne’s fun Southeast Asian diner is helmed by a former Chin Chin chef. Come for playful takes on traditional curries, stir fries and dim sum, served in a sleek dining room overlooking Flinders Lane.

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  • A casual dining space with one of the finest views in Melbourne.

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  • Set inside Chris Lucas’s fine diner, Society, this European-inspired brasserie retains the strong seafood focus of its sibling, but offers it in a more casual space primed for long lunches and late-night cocktails. Pull up at the bar for signature drinks and exceptional drops from Society’s peerless wine cellar.