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A shot of a table with various dishes of food and glasses of bee
Photograph: Graham Denholm

30 hot restaurants for summer

You've got three months to tick off this essential foodie checklist. Ready, set, eat!

By Time Out editors
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Beach Burrito Fitzroy

Restaurants Fitzroy
You won’t get an authentic taste of Mexico from Beach Burrito, but you will get wallet-pleasing meals. There’s also a range of frozen margaritas with dangerous intentions.

Belleville

Bars Wine bars Melbourne
Rotisserie chickens are the stars at Chinatown eatery Belleville. The free-range chooks are saltwater brined overnight and miso butter-glazed and roasted to order in the Brazilian rotisserie. Pass the hot sauce please!
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Compass Pizza

3 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Brunswick
The generous Italian fare at this Brunswick pizzeria is classic to its bones, save for a few modern touches, like the option of vegan cheese and gluten-free bases. Even most of the prices are from a few decades back.

Delhi Streets

Restaurants Melbourne
See how Delhi does street food with Delhi Streets' spiced chickpea burgers, pani puri and kulfi icypoles. Try the pistachio version, made with condensed milk, pistachios, cardamon, saffron and cinnamon.
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Din Tai Fung

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Melbourne
Din Tai Fung's signature xiao long bao is all about the delicately constructed soupy explosion and they're so good that the truffle versions with a sliver of the good stuff are almost redundant.

Juanita Peaches

Restaurants Brunswick
Raph Rashid's All Day Donuts becomes a fried chicken shop come dinnertime. Juanita Peaches' bare-bones menu focuses on the important stuff: fried chicken, burros, Melbourne Bitter and doughnuts for dessert. 
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Longhorn Saloon

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Carlton
By day, Five Points Deli is where your sandwich dreams are made. By night, venture upstairs to Longhorn Saloon for a refined East Coast smokehouse menu and great tap beers and cocktails.

Shujinko

Restaurants Melbourne
How Melbourne ever made it for so long without a 24-hour ramen joint we will never know. Shujinko is a stone's throw away from some of the city's most popular late-night venues.
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Truck Stop Deluxe

Restaurants Werribee
The minds behind Melbourne’s best burgers have created a suburban burger joint to make city slickers envious. Finally, there's an alternative to Macca's if you find yourself hungry in the 'burbs.

Dexter

3 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Preston
This Preston spot is a carnivore's dream. Think tin trays with ribs and sauce, marrow trenchers (translation: chargrilled sourdough with bone marrow butter), pickles and 'slaw. Oh, and they have meat doughnuts.

Entrecôte City

Restaurants Melbourne
Dine like a Parisian in this CBD replica of South Yarra's chicest bistro. Expect the famous Entrecôte steak frites and daily happy hour deals that’ll buy you oysters and champagne on a poor man's budget.
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Lee Ho Fook

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Melbourne
Smith Street’s loss is the city’s gain, as Lee Ho Fook brings cutting-edge Chinese to Duckboard Place. It’s a slicker, more sophisticated package, with a rock’n’roll edge that suits Liong’s punchy regional cuisine.

Magic Mountain Saloon

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Melbourne
It’s not exactly a Thai restaurant. It’s not exactly a bar. Oh and it's next door to a club. Magic Mountain Saloon’s unwillingness to be pigeonholed matters not one jot because it’s an absolute winner. 
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Stray Neighbour

3 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Preston
Preston's Stray Neighbour is much more than a cracking local. There's a finely judged balance between drinks and food, plus great entertainment (pool table!) and al fresco areas for basking in the sun.
Fresh house made pasta at tipo 00
Photograph: Graham Denholm

Tipo 00

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Melbourne
Melbourne’s a town that does pasta either really well or terribly badly. Tipo 00 is a stand-out member of the first category so if you're a carb-dodger there is no place for you here. 
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A close up shot of a purple cocktail with flowers on the top  at
Photograph: Graham Denholm

Transformer Fitzroy

3 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Fitzroy
Vegetarians in all their stripes, including your hardcore vegans, will embrace this beautiful Fitzroy eatery as the restaurant they’ve been waiting for. 

Trattoria Emilia

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Melbourne
Trattoria Emilia focuses on the fundamentals. From Gill’s Diner's looser European menu they’ve drilled down into the particular delights of regional Italy. Here, pasta is as it should be – simple, unfussy, utterly satisfying.
Vietnamese-style steak tartare served with rice puff wafers
Photograph: Graham Denholm

Anchovy

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Richmond
Just like its namesake, Anchovy is small but piquant and delicious. Young chef Thi Le's Vietnamese take on steak tartare is the ultimate example of her modern Asian reimaginings of classic flavour combos.
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A dish at Kappo being prepared by a chef
Photograph: Graham Denholm

Kappo

5 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Melbourne
Kappo is an omakase restaurant. That either translates here as “no menu – but you get to flag likes and dislikes” or “slow”. Choose from five, seven or nine courses, but commit yourself to the cause for at least two hours.

Lamaro's Bodega

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants South Melbourne
A bodega? Not exactly, but South Melbourne's Lamaro’s is thoroughly Iberian with a menu that's crowded with pork products in many forms. Don't miss the suckling pig for an unadulterated plate of porcine loveliness.
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A close up shot of the chocolate caco pod dessert at Lume
Photograph: Graham Denholm

Lûmé

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants South Melbourne
Epic. That’s what you can call a 15-course degustation featuring things like cow’s udde, calamari entrail and cured emu and finishes with a painted chocolate cacao pod smashed with a delicate silver hammer.

Minamishima

5 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Richmond
Melbourne’s best sushi. It’s a big call. But after encountering Minamishima, it’s one we’re prepared to make. Leave your dining experience to the experts for an exquisite 15-course omakase selection.  
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O.My

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Beaconsfield
Run by three young brothers (Blayne, Tyson and Chayse Bertoncello) all under 30, you won't be blamed for underestimating the fine dining capacity of this degustation-only restaurant in the outer suburbs.

The Roving Marrow

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Carlton
What was once a sports bar frequented by Carlton's older gents now houses the Roving Marrow. Here, you'll find a contemporary Australasian and European menu, plus a yum cha service – but not as you know it.
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Saint Urban

4 out of 5 stars
Restaurants Richmond
This Richmond eatery ticks a lot of boxes regarding the age-old ideal of the local restaurant, including the tone of the service (casual yet sharp) and the wine list (as easy as Sunday morning).

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