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Jade Solomon

Jade Solomon

Food and drink writer, Time Out Melbourne

Articles (5)

What to eat at the Australian Open

What to eat at the Australian Open

In a city that takes its sport very seriously, the Australian Open ranks right up there as one of Melbourne's most important events on the annual calendar. And given we are a city that takes its food very seriously too, you can bet that the tasty bites being served at the Australian Open are almost as hot as the on-court temperatures. Each year the Open seems to amp up its food offerings, and in 2023 the line-up is looking stellar: think renowned Melbourne chefs, pop-ups from some of the city's best restaurants, guest appearances from celebrity Sydney chefs and, of course, plenty to drink to wash it all down. Here is a round-up of some of the best food on offer at the Australia Open 2023.  Looking for somewhere to eat after the tennis? Head to one of the 50 best restaurants in Melbourne for dinner.

The best places to host your Christmas party

The best places to host your Christmas party

We've (almost) made it! The end of the year is near, the silly season is upon us and you can practically smell the joy of the summer holidays. Before saying goodbye to your colleagues for a few sweet days or weeks of freedom, let your hair down together and celebrate getting through another year of the nine-to-five office grind with a Christmas party to remember. By this time of the year though, you're bound to be hanging on by a thread, so we have done the hard work for you. Don't waste your last precious drops of energy scrambling to find a venue for your Christmas event, use our round-up below to find the perfect spot to have a glass of bubbly together, and perhaps share too much personal information. Hey, at least you've got the summer break to try and recover from any embarrassment caused.  Time Out's 100 Days of Summer calendar is here to help you plan your entire summer in Melbourne.

Is the fall of Deliveroo the beginning of the end for delivery services?

Is the fall of Deliveroo the beginning of the end for delivery services?

Earlier this week, Deliveroo made the shock announcement that it was ceasing operations in Australia, effective immediately. Citing "challenging economic conditions", Deliveroo stated that "achieving a sustainable position of leadership in the market is not possible without a disproportionate level of investment which would have highly uncertain returns."  While the announcement sent shock waves across the city, with many customers left disappointed and employees left in the lurch, something Melburnian's didn't suspect was that this sudden closure could signal the beginning of the end for delivery services as we know them. One of Melbourne's hospitality giants, Chris Lucas, has announced that Lucas restaurants have "ceased all relationships with third-party delivery apps and are bringing [its] much-loved takeaway offerings at Baby Pizza and Hawker Hall in-house. This means we can give our crew more shifts and more hours, and we can better control the experience you have at home when you order with us. For those wanting to get their Baby or Hawker Hall fix, you can give us a call or jump on our website."  And it's not just Mr Lucas standing up for the hospo industry; Mr Miyagi, the Windsor favourite, has posted an announcement on Instagram overnight, calling out "'blue jacket wearing cyclist' workers" to work for the restaurant group. Mr Miyagi called out the "'blue company'" for leaving 15,000 riders without work: "As the hospitality industry continues to be impacted by a lab

Would you let a robot make your coffee?

Would you let a robot make your coffee?

When we were young, we thought by 2022 we would have flying cars and all be taking trips to the moon. While it seems advanced technology has been geared towards more important things (can't blame them), Melbourne has just got a taste of the shiny future, with the arrival of a robotic barista.¬† Rovii the robot is the 24/7 robot barista who has taken up residence at Westfield Doncaster. Set to cause a stir in the hospitality industry, Rovii's owners (parents? leaders?), Ilona Liu and Wilson Wang, are setting out to combat¬†systemic labour shortages by establishing an 'always-on' service to Melburnians whom they allege each drinks 203 coffees on average¬†a year (we honestly thought¬†that would be higher?).¬† Ilona says that Rovii has arrived at a crucial time. ‚ÄúSince the pandemic, the challenges felt across the hospitality and quick service industry have been significant," she says. "Staffing is an issue across all areas of hospitality, and Rovii is a solution for this. People in Melbourne have a high standard when it comes to coffee, and Rovii does a great job of exceeding expectations.‚ÄĚ Almost all stakeholders in the hospitality industry have suffered from the crushing blow of the last few pandemic years. Countless people lost their jobs during years of endless lockdowns. Many businesses went under as they struggled to make ends meet. Employees faced the harsh reality of losing foreign staff, as well as the nightmare that was rostering staff during forced isolation and quarantin

PSA: Moon Dog is releasing a line of low-sugar, high-ABV summer bevs

PSA: Moon Dog is releasing a line of low-sugar, high-ABV summer bevs

Just in time for warm summer evenings, hot and sweaty day parties, beach sessions and all other kinds of summer fun, Moon Dog Brewery is set to release its latest thirst-quenching and ice-cold ready-to-drink (RTD) range: Razzler Alcoholic Disco Nectar.  The tasty bevs are set to make a splash not only because of the range of fruity flavours but also because they are low in sugar, making them a healthier option for your summer indulgences. The Disco Nectars contain at least 30 per cent less sugar, calories and carbs than a regular RTD.  You are sure to be a popular party guest when you next show up with a pack of Razzlers in hand. Choose between passionfruit, orange-mango, lemon-lime, watermelon or apple-blackcurrant. All five flavours will be available in a mixed ten-pack, and the passionfruit and orange-mango flavours will be available in a four-pack. The creative minds at Moon Dog have managed to lower the sugar without compromising on flavour. Unlike alcoholic seltzers which are a clear liquid with not much flavour or sweetness, Razzlers are colourful, naturally sweetened and still pack a juicy punch.  Look out for the Razzler Alcoholic Disco Nectar range launching on October 24, 2022. They will be stocked in independent bottle-os and on Moon Dog's online store.  Getting in the summer spirit? Check out Melbourne's best beaches here. 

News (22)

Guide Dogs Australia is seeking Puppy Rasiers for their first baby labradors for 2023

Guide Dogs Australia is seeking Puppy Rasiers for their first baby labradors for 2023

Here's some adorable news to brighten your day: Guide Dogs Australia has welcomed its first litter of pups for 2023. A labrador named Febe has given birth to six healthy lab pups: two male and four female, three black and three yellow. The first litter for the year is always an extra special one, with¬†Leah Willet of Guide Dogs Australia commenting that "there‚Äôs just something about the first litter of the year ‚Äď they remind us we‚Äôve got another beautiful year ahead of working with these amazing dogs to help them take on a life-changing role in our community". Generally, the names of each litter of pups would begin with the same letter, with the Guide Dogs team cycling through the alphabet as each new bundle of joy arrives. For example, a recent 'C' litter featured the names Casper, Connie, Cassie and Cara. But given the next letter up was 'X', and no working pooch can have the same name (Xanthe and Xia were already taken), an exception was made¬†and staff members were tasked with naming each pup whatever they wanted. So, without further ado, meet your first official Guide Dogs Australia labrador pups for 2023: Soda, Honey, Joyce, Rocket, Jina and Beau (we're not crying, you're crying). So what's in store for these puparoos now? The little labs will spend their first two months with mum Febe, before being welcomed into the homes of volunteer Puppy Raisers for 12 months.¬†These Puppy Raisers¬†will provide caring environments and play a crucial role in transforming these pups int

Want to do something good in 2023? Become a volunteer Puppy Raiser for Guide Dogs Australia

Want to do something good in 2023? Become a volunteer Puppy Raiser for Guide Dogs Australia

Here's some adorable news to brighten your day: Guide Dogs Australia has welcomed its first litter of pups for 2023. Across New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, while the rest of us were out celebrating the end of 2022, goodest girl Febe was giving birth to six healthy labrador pups: two male and four female, three black and three yellow. The first litter for the year is always an extra special one, with¬†Leah Willet of Guide Dogs Australia commenting that "there‚Äôs just something about the first litter of the year ‚Äď they remind us we‚Äôve got another beautiful year ahead of working with these amazing dogs to help them take on a life-changing role in our community." Generally, the names of each litter of pups would begin with the same letter, with the Guide Dogs team cycling through the alphabet as each new bundle of joy arrives. For example, a recent 'C' litter featured the names Casper, Connie, Cassie and Cara. But given the next letter up was 'X', and no working pooch can have the same name (Xanthe and Xia were already taken), an exception was made¬†and staff members were tasked with naming each pup. So, without further ado, meet your first official Guide Dogs Australia labrador pups for 2023: Soda, Honey, Joyce, Rocket, Jina and Beau (I'm not crying, you're crying). So what's in store for these puparoos now? The little labs will spend their first two months with mum Febe, before being welcomed into the homes of volunteer Puppy Raisers for 12 months, who will provide a loving and

Watch this space: 1800 Lasagne is slated to open two new venues in 2023

Watch this space: 1800 Lasagne is slated to open two new venues in 2023

It seems that one brick-and-mortar storefront was not enough for Joey Kellock, the¬†lasagne fanatic behind 1800 Lasagne, with plans in place for not just one, but two more Northcote venues to open in 2023. The popular lasagne joint is expanding¬†its horizons with a sandwich shop and a wine bar, both slated to open later this year.¬† 1800 La-Sanga, the aptly named new sandwich joint coming to High Street, is set to sell stuffed ciabattas spilling at the seams with savoury delights such as porchetta, cotoletta and lasagne, of course. And just¬†a few doors up¬†will be Dopolavoro ‚Äď the details may be scant at this stage, but word on the street is that the former watchmaker's store will be transformed into a dynamic and easy-going after-work wine bar. Given the success of 1800 Lasagne, we suspect that whatever Joey's bechamel-coated hands touch, will definitely turn to gold (or at the least, a golden lasagne crust).¬† Watch this space for further details, but we expect 1800 La-Sanga to pop up at 555 High Street in Northcote in the coming months, with Dopolavoro to follow a few months later at 567-569 High Street. Hungry now? Check out the 50 best restaurants in Melbourne. On a budget? Explore the 50 best cheap eats in Melbourne.¬† ¬†

Hell yeah! Melbourne has just been named one of the top five drinking cities for 2023

Hell yeah! Melbourne has just been named one of the top five drinking cities for 2023

Well how 'bout it Melbourne. We have just been named as one of the top five drinking cities worth travelling to in 2023. Punch, a James Beard Award-winning media brand focused on drinks and drinking culture, was given the unenviable task of choosing the world's top five travel-worthy drinking destinations. And boy does it feel good to be listed among such worthy company, with Buenos Aires in Argentina, Lisbon in Portugal, Madison in the United States and Osaka in Japan rounding out the rest of the list.  Punch has determined that Melbourne's must-drink cocktails are the New York Sazerac (made here with a 50:50 split of rye and brandy), the Espresso Martini (an easy drinking, much-loved favourite) and the Japanese Slipper, which is allegedly Melbourne's only true classic cocktail, having been invented in the 1980s by a French expat bartender.  Fred Siggins for Punch says that "it’s Melbourne’s cultural diversity that makes it a truly world-class drinking city. Joining long-standing Italian and Greek populations who have left their mark on the city’s dining and drinking scene, more recent waves of immigration from across Asia have spurred a late-night culture that spans everything from karaoke to soju bars".  While we know that we know how to drink, this recognition makes us more proud than ever of the impeccable bar scene in Melbourne. Whether it's rooftop bars, beer gardens, late-night bars, cocktail bars, wine bars or just the good ol' corner pub, our fair city certainly ha

Cute alert: these adorable puppies are graduating from guide dog training

Cute alert: these adorable puppies are graduating from guide dog training

Life is hard. The world is a scary place. It has been a rough year for many. But there are always puppies. Puppies to brighten your day and to remind you of the good in the world. And these are no ordinary puppies (is there such a thing as an ordinary puppy? They are all extraordinary, really). These are smart, selfless, and obedient puppies ‚Äď the goodest bois going around. And they just happen to be graduating from guide dog school.¬†In total there are 81 dogs graduating in the class of 2022, and they will go on to¬†help Victorians in a number of heroic ways as qualified guide dogs, therapy dogs, companion dogs, ambassador dogs and more.¬† The pups who managed to complete the training program will soon fulfill the invaluable role of providing support and care to people living with low vision or blindness, such as Antony Rako. Antony has been paired with Brett, a guide dog who he credits for helping him achieve confidence and independence. ‚ÄúI¬†believe that Brett has given me the freedom to be independent and travel around unfamiliar places again,‚ÄĚ says Antony.¬†‚ÄúAs I embark on the final chapter of my studies and look to get a new job when I graduate, I will feel very confident with Brett by my side. His presence has been truly life-changing, and I am so very grateful for the wonderful work guide dogs do.‚ÄĚ And even those little labs who may not have got as far as Brett did in his training will still go on to play crucially important roles in their lives, providing comfort, emotiona

Mad about Middle Earth? Don't miss this once-in-a-lifetime deal to stay in Hobbiton

Mad about Middle Earth? Don't miss this once-in-a-lifetime deal to stay in Hobbiton

Before we start, set your alarms for 8am AEST (10am NZDT) on December 14, 2022. For any Tolkien fans, this is one date you do not want to miss because for the first time ever, guests will have the opportunity to book a stay at the original Hobbiton movie set through Airbnb, as featured in the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit film trilogies. What's the catch you ask? Perhaps it's exorbitantly expensive? Not at all. Property owner Russell Alexander is offering up the property for just $10 a night. However, there are only three, two-night stays up for grabs. Hence, the urgency not to miss the booking opening time.  In celebration of the 10th anniversary of The Hobbit: an Unexpected Journey, those crazed fans lucky enough to secure a booking will gain access to 44 permanently constructed Hobbit Holes and other fantastical locations in the Shire. Overnight accommodation will be in the Millhouse, a two-bedroom Hobbit-inspired home with decor curated by the trilogies’ creative director Brian Massey himself. The experience will also include private access to a personal Hobbit Hole, set up for memorable moments of preciousss relaxation and afternoon tea; an evening feast in the Green Dragon Inn with a magical meal of beef and ale stew, whole roast chickens, and plenty of ale; as well as second breakfast and elevenses served daily. And the stay wouldn't be complete without a private behind-the-scenes tour of the Hobbiton movie set to explore all the fanciful makings of the world-famo

It's official: Melbourne has been named the friendliest city in the world

It's official: Melbourne has been named the friendliest city in the world

Melbourne has had an impressive 2022. One of its neighbourhoods was named the coolest in Australia. It was then awarded the title of the most LQBTQIA+-friendly city in Australia (and the fourth worldwide). And a Melbourne barista was even crowned the champion of the World Barista Competition. And now, Melbourne has been named the world's friendliest city.  Melbourne triumphed over 23 of the most visited cities across the globe (including Sydney!), to take out expat insurance company William Russell's title for the world's friendliest city. The winners were decided on a number of factors: resident happiness, safety, LGBTQIA+ inclusivity, top attractions and highest-rated hotels.  Using its city-friendly criteria, William Russell scored Melbourne a Friendly City Score of 6.06, stating that “Melbourne is a forward-thinking, rapidly growing city, and it is recognised for being a fully open, inclusive and competitive city, as well as a welcoming place for the LGBTQI+ community, who are often among the most marginalised communities around the world".  And would you have guessed that our city's top attraction (according to Yelp) is the Queen Victoria Market? The insurance company stated that the Queen Victoria Market scored a staggering 7.296 out of ten, helping to push Melbourne into the top spot.    Photograph: Steven Wright     Coming in behind Melbourne was Paris, with a score of 5.99, with William Russell commenting that Paris' fancy dining scene contributed to the happiness

Dreaming of a holiday? Score cheap tickets to the Northern Territory today

Dreaming of a holiday? Score cheap tickets to the Northern Territory today

There is no better way to treat yo' self this Black Friday than with a holiday. And from today,¬†Jetstar is¬†offering flights¬†to Uluru for as little as $89. Yes, just $89 ‚Äď that's probably less than you'll spend on a coupla rounds of frothies tonight at the pub. Jetstar is also slinging a bunch of super cheap (and direct) flights to Darwin from Melbourne, Sydney and Cairns, to help make all your holiday dreams a reality.¬†You can also score yourself 25 per cent off a bunch of top travel deals and experiences across the Northern Territory.¬†For those who have always dreamt of¬†exploring the wonders of Uluru¬†or experiencing the delights of¬†Kakadu, don't miss out on these offers, running on both Friday, November 25, and Cyber Monday.¬† Check out all the¬†deals ‚Äď from the tropical¬†magic of the Top End to the mysteries¬†of the Red Centre ‚Äď right now before it's too late. See you in the NT!¬†¬† Keen to stay closer to home? These are the best carless day trips from Melbourne.¬†

Just in: hospo giant Andrew McConnell set to open new Gimlet bar

Just in: hospo giant Andrew McConnell set to open new Gimlet bar

It's always a good day for Melburnians when hospitality legend Andrew McConnell announces plans for a new venue. And in a first for the Trader House company, the intimate new establishment is set to be a stand-alone bar that will double as a sister venue to Gimlet.  Having just signed a lease for 165 Flinders Lane, McConnell and the Trader House team are engaged in early-stage discussions about the concept and plans for the new Gimlet bar. They will continue to work with Acme, the Sydney-based design house, responsible for the oh-so-glamorous fit-out at Gimlet.  The Gimlet bar will stand just a few doors down from the immeasurably popular Gimlet at Cavendish House. The restaurant, which opened bravely during the dark pandemic years, had the makings of a Melbourne institution before it even began service with an iconic 1920s building as the foundation, an old-world European nostalgic feel, a wood-fired oven taking centre stage in the kitchen, and McConnell at the helm. The restaurant has found favour in the hearts of Melburnians, with trying to get a table at the culinary hot spot becoming like an Olympic sport.    The details might be scarce at this stage, but based on McConnell and Jo McGann's Trader House's track record, we expect only great things from the new venue. Watch this space for further details, but at this stage, the bar is slated to open in early winter 2023.  If you need a drink now, check out the best bars in Melbourne.   

The end of an era: late-night venue Colour is closing its doors

The end of an era: late-night venue Colour is closing its doors

After serving the Carlton and wider Melbourne communities for a solid three years, the Queensberry Street cult-favourite club Colour has made the devastating announcement that it will be closing its doors at the end of 2022. Citing "ever-increasing financial pressures" in the industry, the team behind the late-night live music venue said that the continued operation has become unviable.  Despite opening its doors not long before the global pandemic struck, Colour quickly became a beloved local hangout with live music, an inclusive performance space and a highly sought-after 24-hour licence. In an announcement on its Facebook page, the team said, "We built the club in 2019 as a means to continue to support the amazing local dance and live music community, and we are proud to have played a small role in filling that space. It’s been incredible to work with such an amazing amount of new talent, and to watch many of our peers grow into the amazing artists they are today."  Colour has thanked its staff, friends, family and customers for all their support, which was even more appreciated given those never-ending lockdowns. And hey, Colour is certainly not planning on going out quietly, with an aim to feature as many guests and special events before 2023 arrives. The first of those send-off parties has been announced, with long-term residents Proto Moro set to perform for a final time in Colour's orange room on December 2, alongside Delivery, Mammoth, DJ Shio and many more. This new

Deliveroo is ditching operations Down Under

Deliveroo is ditching operations Down Under

Given how much food we have had delivered to our doors over the past few years, we are shocked and saddened to hear the news that Deliveroo has made the challenging decision to leave Australia. In a sudden and unsuspected move, Deliveroo has announced it has entered voluntary administration, appointing KordaMentha as the administrator for the process.  In an email to customers, Deliveroo announced that "like all other companies, [Deliveroo] is now doing business in challenging economic conditions, which requires us to take difficult decisions...In Australia, we have concluded that achieving a sustainable position of leadership in the market is not possible without a disproportionate level of investment which would have highly uncertain returns." The number of food delivery services operating across Australia has certainly increased in recent years, as evidenced by the sheer number of delivery people riding their bikes on almost every street you encounter. With competition from Uber Eats, Menulog, HungryPanda and DoorDash, and with many people returning to dining in restaurants several times a week, the competition may have proven too tough for Deliveroo.  Deliveroo says: "We have been proud to bring so many people amazing meals from Australia’s great restaurants over the years. We want to thank everyone we have worked with." We too want to thank all the drivers and bike riders who kept us going through lockdown after lockdown, who braved the outside world when the rest of us

Deliveroo is ditching operations Down Under

Deliveroo is ditching operations Down Under

Given how much food we have had delivered to our doors over the past few years, we are shocked and saddened to hear the news that Deliveroo has made the challenging decision to leave Australia. In a sudden and unsuspected move, Deliveroo has announced it has entered voluntary administration, appointing KordaMentha as the administrator for the process.  In an email to customers, Deliveroo announced that "like all other companies, [Deliveroo] is now doing business in challenging economic conditions, which requires us to take difficult decisions...In Australia, we have concluded that achieving a sustainable position of leadership in the market is not possible without a disproportionate level of investment which would have highly uncertain returns." The number of food delivery services operating across Australia has certainly increased in recent years, as evidenced by the sheer number of delivery people riding their bikes on almost every street you encounter. From Uber Eats to Menulog, HungryPanda to DoorDash, and with many people returning to dining in restaurants several times a week, the competition may have proven too tough for Deliveroo.  Deliveroo says "We have been proud to bring so many people amazing meals from Australia’s great restaurants over the years. We want to thank everyone we have worked with." We too want to thank all the drivers and bike riders who kept us going through lockdown after lockdown, who braved the outside world when the rest of us were stuck on the

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