Every mum is different, so there's no ideal restaurant to celebrate Mother’s Day. That said, there are a few traits worth seeking out when it comes time to reserve a table. And given this year's falls on Sunday May 12, that time is fast approaching.

Where possible, the restaurant should be on the quieter end of the spectrum. And service should be attentive and considerate – because no one's ever felt special waiting for their next drink. A classic cuisine such as French is often a safe bet and a touch of sophistication goes a long way.

We've assembled our list with all this in mind. Stick to the top dozen restaurants if you're keen to splash out and really make your mum's day. Look further down if your family is more relaxed when it comes to celebrating Mother's Day.

Read more:
Best Special Occasion Restaurants in Melbourne
Best Restaurants in Melbourne

Epocha

The legendary hospitality here will make the whole family feel looked after.

49 Rathdowne Street, Carlton

Carlton Wine Room

There's more than five levels of dining space here.

172-174 Faraday Street, Carlton

Stokehouse

Stuck for conversation? Just look out of the windows, and let the sweeping ocean views do the talking.

Upstairs 30 Jacka Boulevard, St Kilda

Flower Drum

Ideal for large groups: Cantonese Mother's Day is an extended family affair.

17 Market Lane, Melbourne

Cutler & Co.

Mother's Day is always on a Sunday – just like Cutler & Co's $85 set menu lunch.

55-57 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy

Estelle

“A touch of innovation without being scary or confronting” is how owner-chef Scott Pickett describes the menu here, and he’s bang-on.

243 High Street, Northcote

Florentino

Florentino is still the standard-bearer for special occasion dining in Melbourne. Ask for a table in the mural room.

80 Bourke Street, Melbourne

Cafe Di Stasio

Ronnie Di Stasio's patented brand of theatrical yet intimate hospitality lends itself well to a Mother's Day meal.

31 Fitzroy Street, St Kilda

The European

A sure-fire winner for special occasions.

161 Spring Street, Melbourne

Rockpool Bar & Grill

A large experience in the best possible way.

8 Whiteman Street, Crown Complex, Southbank

Ides

An acclaimed, set menu only fine-diner featuring punchy, technique-driven dishes.

92 Smith Street, Collingwood

Kisumé

The Lucas Group's most ambitious venue is also its quietest, making it the ideal space for an extended lunch or dinner with mum.

175 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Saxe

Set menu or a la carte, this two-storey restaurant in the legal district will have something for mum.

211 Queen Street, Melbourne

Anchovy

Is your mum an adventurous eater? Take her here for vegemite tempura and other clever Vietnamese-Australian fusion dishes.

338 Bridge Road, Richmond

Coda

You can't go wrong with this Flinders Lane staple.

Basement 141 Flinders Lane (corner Oliver Lane), Melbourne

L'Hôtel Gitan

Book a table in the bistro area for a French perspective on Aussie pub dining.

32 Commercial Road, Prahran

Etta

If mum loves her greens, the veg-heavy menu at Etta won't disappoint.

60 Lygon Street, Brunswick East

Scopri

A solid Italian dining-experience that stands out, even in Carlton.

191 Nicholson Street, Carlton

Park Street Pasta & Wine

A charming all-day diner at an unassuming intersection.

268 Park Street, South Melbourne

Bistro Guillaume

Crown's marquee French restaurant is a safe bet for a good Mother's Day.

Shop 7 Crown Complex 8 Whiteman, Southbank

French Saloon Bar & Bistro

Although it's hot property, mum will be impressed if you can wrangle a table with a view.

Level 1 46 Hardware Lane, Melbourne

Añada

This will be Añada's twelfth Mother's Day service. The Gertrude Street tapas classic has the day down pat.

197 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy

Cumulus Inc.

If mum loves a share-plate, this is the Andrew McConnell restaurant to book.

45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Cumulus Up Wine Bar

For a more casual alternative, head to the wine bar above.

Level 1 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Copper Pot

The relaxed decor belies Copper Pot's serious fine-dining chops.

105 Victoria Street, Seddon

La Luna Bistro

The steak here is house-aged.

320 Rathdowne Street, Carlton North

David's

David's is a confident, comfortable proponent of Shanghainese cuisine.

4 Cecil Place, Prahran

Annam

This lively Vietnamese restaurant is perfect for a large Mother's Day group.

56 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne

Gilson

Come here after a Mother's Day walk through the Botanic Gardens.

171 Domain Road, South Yarra

Thirty Eight Chairs South Yarra

The staff are very enthusiastic about special occasions here.

4a Bond Street, South Yarra

Bon Ap'

A relaxed Brunswick Street bistro.

193 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy