On being obsessed with new + iconic restaurants🍴

Plus the best new CKT in town + 24 Vietnamese & Cambodian breakfast spots

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A Vietnamese feast for breakfast in Footscray at Bun Cha Co Dao

A Bite-Sized Summary:

  • Feature: why we are obsessed with new and iconic restaurants (and what it takes to be a stayer)

  • Just Open: Kakilang serves Melbourne’s best char kway teow in the most unlikely location

  • List: 24 Vietnamese & Cambodian breakfasts in Melbourne
    (Off Menu subscribers only)

  • Turn the Tables: a very embarrassing customer review

  • Revisit: access past newsletters here

I’ve settled on the title of my memoir: A lot on my Plate. But I don’t have time to pen it. Between restaurant reviews, freelance work, events and writing and producing this newsletter, I’m positively rammed. But for my 50th dispatch (!!!), I want to tell you about a non-food project: Shut Up! for MND. I’m MND Victoria’s proud ambassador in the wake of my dad being diagnosed with motor neurone disease last year.

I won’t keep typing at you; it’s all in the 90-second video below. Here is the donation link, in case you’re in a position to help those with MND live as well as possible for as long as possible. If nothing else, do me a favour this weekend and be ultra present as you communicate with loved ones and share meals. Don’t wait for a diagnosis to stop taking the little things for granted.

Sofia x

FEATURE: In with the Old, In with the New

We are utterly obsessed with “hot new” and “iconic” restaurants. I wanted to find out what it takes to survive past "JUST OPEN" and "FIRST LOOK" features and become a stalwart. It turns out that whether you speak to the owner of the world's oldest restaurant or a consumer psychologist, the answer’s the same.

The mural room at Florentino (now Grossi Florentino), 1935

JUST OPEN: Is this Melbourne’s best CKT?

Speaking of newbies, enter Kakilang: a restaurant specialising in smoky char kway teow that’s run by a family who’s been making sesame oil since the Qing Dynasty era. It’s in the most unexpected spot beneath a dated hotel, with queues of Malaysians lining up on weekends for a taste. Don’t miss it.

OFF MENU: 24 Vietnamese & Cambodian restaurants that serve non-boring breakfasts

FYI, many of Melbourne’s Vietnamese and Cambodian restaurants open first thing in the morning. These are seriously good feeds, and much more nourishing and interesting than avocado toast. This is the fifth instalment of the Melbourne Alt-Breakfast Series, for Off Menu subscribers only. Sign up here for access.

TURN THE TABLES: Brutal Customer Reviews

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