The 2019 Comedy Festival runs from March 27 to April 21 and features more than 600 shows. Each one is a convenient excuse to catch a pre- and post-show dinner at one of the CBD's many good restaurants. We've pulled the best eateries together and included a few bars, if you really want to make a night of it.

Read more:
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Best Restaurants in Melbourne
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Best Restaurants in Melbourne CBD

Butchers Diner

Burgers, steak sandwiches and duck-heart yakitori, 24 hours a day.

10 Bourke Street, Melbourne


Go ahead and order up an American barbeque feast.

The Basement 195 Little Collins Street, Melbourne


Head to the roof and order as few or as many tapas items as time allows. Just don't skip the 36-month-old Joselito jamón Ibérico.

103 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne

SPQR Pizza

These wood-fired pizzas come out in a flash, so there's no chance of missing your show.

26 Liverpool Street, Melbourne


Share some hawker-style dishes from across South-East Asia.

56 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne

Cumulus Inc.

This all-day eatery is open whatever time you need it, with a flexible menu that works as well for snacking as for a full meal.

45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Cumulus Up Wine Bar

Head upstairs from Cumulus to find this more refined wine bar, which is ideal for a pre-show snack and glass of champagne.

Level 1 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Misschu CBD

Affordable Vietnamese served quickly. In other words, perfect for a pre-show dinner.

297 Exhibition Street, Melbourne


Bookings are essential at this eternally popular French-Vietnamese restaurant. Aiming for an early pre-show timeslot will help.

Basement 141 Flinders Lane (corner Oliver Lane), Melbourne

The European

Equally suited to a pre-show dinner or late night dessert.

161 Spring Street, Melbourne


250- and 450-gram meats cooked asado style.

401 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne

Garden State Hotel

Four storeys to suit all needs. Pre-show drinks, dinner or a cocktail or two after the show.

101 Flinders Lane, Melbourne


Sit by the Argentinian grill for a show in itself. Open from midday, so there's no rush.

19 ACDC Lane, Melbourne


Make sure to reserve at table at this Japanese hotspot from Andrew McConnell.

180 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
Book a Table

Boilermaker House

For whisky and beer before or after the show. Or both.

209-211 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne

Eau De Vie

Cocktails served table-side to enrich your night.

1 Malthouse Lane, Melbourne
Book a Table


Shane Delia's modern Middle Eastern restaurant is set menu only – perfect for big groups before a show.

21 Bond St, Melbourne
Book a Table


Sit at the sushi bar for a quick pre-show bite, or head to the upstairs Chablis Bar, which packs 80 choices.

175 Flinders Lane, Melbourne


Sit at the bar for a pre-show cocktail and snack or reserve a table in the restaurant to enjoy the modern Indian menu.

20 Duckboard Place, Melbourne
Book a Table

Chin Chin

There will be lines at this fiery, no-bookings Thai diner. Visit only if you have time to spare.

125 Flinders Lane, Melbourne


A taco and tequila bar that's a perfect pitstop for groups before seeing a show.

Level 1 11 Collins Street, Melbourne


Like Bomba, this Spanish restaurant's tapas format makes controlling the length of your meal easy. Reservations are recommended for a pre-show dinner or drink.

1 Hosier Lane, Melbourne


A beer hall, cocktail bar and Thai restaurant in one. A good option at any time of day or night.

First Floor, Curtin House 252 Swanston Street, Melbourne

Don Don

The service at this Japanese curry joint is faster than at most fast-food chains, and it's cheap.

198 Swanston Street , Melbourne

Arbory Bar & Eatery

Enjoy a drink and burger on the Yarra before the show. If the weather permits of course.

Flinders Walk, Melbourne

Izakaya Den 2029

An underground Japanese restaurant and bar that's open late for a post-show snack and drink.

Basement 114 Russell Street, Melbourne

HuTong CBD

Some of the city's best dumplings, paired with a BYO policy. Perfect.

14-16 Market Lane, Melbourne


Catch a drink at this indoor-outdoor bar and enjoy the stars.

22 Whitehart Lane, Melbourne

Shanghai Village

Fifteen dumplings for $10 – a no-brainer for a cheap pre-show dinner.

112 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne

The Carlton Club

A multi-storey bar open late serving cocktails. Perfect spot for a drink after the show.

193 Bourke St, Melbourne

Rooftop Bar

A favourite among locals, ideal for a pre-show drink with a view.

Level 7, Curtin House 252 Swanston Street, Melbourne


Open late with DJs spinning records. Pop by for a post-show drink and a boogie.

Levels 1 and 2 31 Tattersalls Lane, Melbourne


Pre-batched cocktails and classic rock on the jukebox – there’s only one result here.

234A Russell Street, Melbourne

Gin Palace

Sink into the velvet sofas and choose from an extensive list of gin-based cocktails for a fancier post-show drink.

10 Russell Place, Melbourne

Section 8

DJs playing in an old shipping container. Head here after the show for a drink with friends.

27-29 Tattersalls Lane, Melbourne