The gradual disappearance of old-school milk bars and corner shops has left holes in the fabric of suburban Melbourne. When sisters Sam and Alli Fisher decided to open a venue, they were drawn to the idea of a milk bar serving as a neighbourhood hub - a place where locals could reconnect and restore some of that fading community spirit.

Their place, Tyler’s Milk Bar, is equal parts retail store and cafe, with a focus on Preston produce and Indigenous-owned businesses. Lining the shelves in the retro dining room, there’s Warndu tea from South Australia, kombucha by Lore, milk and butter from Gippsland Jersey, and Chappy’s Chips. Tyler’s also covers household essentials for when you’d rather not head to the supermarket, with a focus on sustainable and reusable packaging.

The cafe side blends old-school comfort with plenty of modern twists. Locals prize the bacon and egg breakfast muffin, filled with sharp cheddar and house-made tomato, capsicum, pepperberry and fennel relish. (The English-style muffins were developed specially by local bakery, Back Alley Bakes.) For lunch, it might be a salad sanga or a mushroom-and-lentil meatball sub, followed by sweets such as lemon almond sponge cake with lemon-honey buttercream and raspberry grappa jam from Jam Lady Jam in Healesville.

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Updated: October 3rd, 2023

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