Australia

Southern Comfort – Eating My Way Around Melbourne in 36 hours

Australians are more than a little parochial about our cities. I’m from Sydney, and as such I am bred to have a fierce dislike of all things Melbourne – namely AFL. Think of Sydney as Los Angeles and Melbourne as New York. It’s a Sydneysider’s God given right to slag of the Melburnians. And of course we have the better coffee. A good explanation can be found here – Australia’s Greatest Rivalry

But I have a secret – I quite like Melbourne. I enjoy the couple of days I spend there each year as Qatar Airways flight direct there from Doha, I use it as my jet lag buffer before heading to Sydney.

Good morning Melbourne

Good morning Melbourne

One of the first places I head to is Coda which is located in a laneway close to Grand Hyatt Melbourne where I usually stay.

Coda’s executive chef Adam D’Silva offers up an east west fusion – think Vietnam meets France meets Mod Oz.

Ha Noi Style Crispy Spring Rolls

Ha Noi Style Crispy Spring Rolls

The spring rolls are a must order for me – pork, taro and nuoc mam
dipping sauce served Ha Noi style wrapped in a lettuce leaf – every mouthful an explosion of flavor.

I also deviated this visit and tried something a little more hearty – 12 hour beef ribs with radish kimchi – the meat literally falling apart.

12 hour beef ribs

12 hour beef ribs

For a bit of color and texture, I also tried the Calamari, green papaya and cucumber salad, with nahm jim, peanuts and crispy anchovies which was a riot of color and sweet and savory notes.

Calamari, green papaya and cucumber  salad, with nahm jim, peanuts and crispy anchovies

Calamari, green papaya and cucumber
salad, with nahm jim, peanuts and
crispy anchovies

My other landmark meal in Melbourne this visit was at Cumulus a busy and welcoming restaurant in Flinders Lane. My partners in crime for this visit were my Melbourne friends James and Lingam who are worthy culinary guides.

It was a mild winter’s day so we opted for the Whole roast lamb shoulder to share. You had me at LAMB.

LAAAAAMB

LAAAAAMB

Our sides ran the gamut of winter goodness.

Broccoli salad, green harissa, black garlic and Espelette

Broccoli salad, green harissa, black garlic and Espelette

Cracked wheat and freekeh salad, preserved lemon, barberries

Cracked wheat and freekeh salad, preserved lemon, barberries

Great food, great company. That’s all I could ask for.

I kinda like Melbourne – but if you tell anyone I will of course deny it.

Melbourne skyline

Melbourne skyline

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