HOT: Slow Food Farmers’ Market, Abbotsford Convent, 1 St Heliers St, Abbotsford

In the grounds of what was once a home for pregnant ‘wayward girls’, the foundation of Abbotsford Convent now holds a slow food farmers’ market on the fourth Saturday of every month.The market was humming by 10am and after a thorough investigation of the stalls, my grocery budget bought:– a shoulder of Bultarra Saltbush lamb, […]

HOT: Loafer Bread, 146 Scotchmer St, Fitzroy North

If you’re going to visit two bakeries in the same area, then it’s only right that you should conduct a comparison visit of the third bakery. Cheerful Loafer Bread seemed to specialise more in cakes, pastries and pies than bread, and their window display of delectable pastries convinced me to try a walnut scroll ($3.50). […]

HOT: Dench Bakers, 109 Scotchmer St, Fitzroy North

Midday at family-owned Dench Bakers, and their fruit loaf was already sold out! Undeterred, I decided to taste-test one of the fruit buns instead and it was the kind of sticky-glazed bun pressed with buttons of fruit that I’d imagine featuring in an Enid Blyton book. Personally I thought it was nice but not particularly […]

HOT: Milawa Cheese Shop, 665 Nicholson Street, Carlton North

A little bit of regional Victoria can be found in North Carlton at the Milawa Cheese Shop. The knowledgeable staff will talk you through flavours, textures, ripeness and storage of their huge range of cheese. They are all as far away from insipid rubbery Kraft singles as you can imagine so of course none of […]

HOT: Maria’s Pasta, 677 Nicholson St, Carlton North

Making fresh filled pasta (other than using wonton skins) is such an intricate and time-consuming process that for me it crosses into a task which provides low culinary return on investment. Thank God for places like Maria’s Pasta, with its upright wall-to-wall freezers bulging with a wide assortment of frozen tortellini, ravioli, agnolotti and cannelloni. […]

HOT: Canals Seafood Appreciation Centre, 703 Nicholson St, Carlton North

Other than in the major Melbourne markets, fishmongers appear to be dying breed on the high street. Canals is Melbourne’s oldest ‘seafood appreciation centre’ and I think the reason for its longevity is good old-fashioned service. If you’re at a fishmongers, I think the quality of the seafood should be a given, so the staff’s […]

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