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Eight reasons to re-visit Dickson

Beatrice Smith

“Oh right…” said my housemate from the couch. “Didn’t think that was Dickson.”

Her comment was in response to the new ‘Dickson, find your flavour‘ ads that have been cropping up on our TV recently. You may have seen them. Lots of close up shots of juicy looking dumplings, noodles, burgers and glass upon glass of wine with a big ‘reveal’ at the end: it’s actually good old Dickson you’re seeing.

The fact that I refer to it as ‘good old Dickson’ is probably half the reason these ads are being made.

With the recent restaurant and cafe boom of the past few years changing the face of almost every suburb BUT Dickson, it’s been easy for some people to skip over it as an option when wondering where to go for food. Dickson’s perception problem lies in the “but I’ve eaten there before” response that people give, not realising that actually a bunch of new venues have opened in Dickson – as recently as last month.

Luckily for me, my housemates and I are actually moving to Dickson later this year, so here are my top eight reasons I’m excited to re-visit Dickson.

Best group food ever

My parents are not huge foodies, at least not for food other than their own*. My childhood was earmarked by a distinct lack of visits to restaurants or cafes, the exception of which was the occasional (read: yearly) trip to Pho Phu Quoc at their old location on Woolley Street. 10 years later, it’s probably still some of the best Vietnamese I’ve ever had, and their new location (literally just around the corner from the old shopfront) is perfect for group bookings.

The friendly, animated staff bring the food out quickly and are never grumpy about splitting the bill (which always makes big group meals sooo much simpler). And the food? Delicious. My favourite order is the curried chicken with coconut cream and vegetables, fresh rice paper rolls and a lychee frappe. 

Good Brother, good coffee

I don’t know why I’m telling you about Good Brother, really, because it’s one of the Northside’s best secret hide outs for coffee enthusiasts. Highlights other than coffee include large breakfasts, freshly baked goods and a very quiet outdoor area.

Good Brother is a great place to bring that really good book you’ve been meaning to read, catching up with friends or just grabbing a takeaway coffee. On weekends it’s MAMIL (Middle Aged Men In Lycra) central so you know the coffee is good.

Plaka

I’m excited to try Greek restaurant Plaka (one of the new kids on the Dickson block) because my housemates and I haven’t eaten Greek food together since we were IN Greece together in 2010…god that’s a long time ago.

Plaka have a serious focus on seafood, which is great as one of my housemates is fructose and gluten intolerant. Fresh fish and greek salad (hold the onion) is a great match for her, and it’s good to know there’s somewhere local we can pop into to suit her needs as Asian food can sometimes prove to be a little tricky with her dietary requirements.

I now have a local

I love the atmosphere of a decent pub. One of my favourite things to do in Melbourne is to visit a corner pub that always has a TV or two tuned to the footy. Luckily, the cheekily named Ducks Nuts offers all the atmosphere without the beer stained carpet.

We saw firsthand on their opening night that they’re not just serious about the drinks side of the operation – the food is just as important. The fact that there’s $15 burgers with a craft beer on Wednesdays and $15 steaks on Tuesdays is just icing on the cake (or the Diane sauce on the medium rare steak, if you please).

Winter laksa 

There’s little that warms you better in the depths of a Canberra winter than a Laska from the Dickson Asian Noodle House. It’s a question for the ages as to whether you choose between the Pad Thai or the half Chicken Laksa, so that’s why you take a friend along and order both!

At around $20 per person for generous entrees, hearty mains, rice and a glass of wine it’s a seriously warming, seriously frugal way to feel decadent during winter.

Weekend brunch

My university friends introduced me to the glory that is Hudson’s Cafe breakfast. Sometimes it seems like the only people you can rely on the morning after a big night are the chefs at Hudson’s.

You don’t have to be a university student to appreciate just how big the breakfasts are, and for way less than you’d pay for a modest breakfast on Lonsdale street or in the Inner South. A stack of three pancakes is just $8.50, which is less than you’d pay for toast at some places.

$13.90 will get you an enormous stack of pumpkin fritters with a generous side of crispy bacon AND avocado AND hollandaise sauce. And for lunch? Warm Thai beef salad is just $13.50 so you won’t feel bad about ordering a fresh banana smoothie too. You’ll still pay under $20.

YOUR FAVOURITE BAKED GOODS

When I visit the Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets, I always grab a Breakfast Roll from Bean and Grain and it’s always a struggle getting past the crowds at the entrance. What most people don’t realise, however, is that Bean and Grain have another location – in Dickson. The menu is even bigger in there, but you can still grab the same amazing bread and coffee.

ALL OF THE WINE

It goes without saying that having a premium selection of wines less than 100 metres from my new house is kind of a danger drawcard. As we found out at our very first HerCanberra Click + Connect, the Canberra Wine House stocks a surprisingly varied range of wines to taste, have a glass of, or purchase a bottle.

No longer left to wander the aisles of the liquor store wondering what type of red (or is it white?) goes with roast duck, I’m expecting The Canberra Wine House to become my go-to for a quiet after work drink with my housemates…and a bottle of wine for dinner afterwards.

*Mum you’re still the best cook I know I promise.

This isn’t a sponsored post. We actually really like Dickson.

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Beatrice Smith

Bea loves that her job as HerCanberra’s Editorial Coordinator involves eating, drinking and interviewing people - sometimes simultaneously. The master of HerCanberra’s publishing schedule, she’s usually found hunched over a huge calendar muttering to herself about content balance. Otherwise you’ll find her at the movies, ordering a cheese board or ordering a cheese board at the movies. More about the Author

  • Ashlee Betteridge

    I’m a Dicko local (well, been here three years, long enough!) and agree with your list (though have not been to Ducks Nuts yet, for me I was disappointed to see the TV screens). Would add Dickson Dumpling House to the list, which does what it says it does (dumplings) really well. We’re also blessed with two great Indian restaurants – 7 Village and The Wild Spice. Allara’s is great for Turkish pide (amazing value, they are massive). Two Sisters is good Thai takeaway. Also, we have a hipster pizza shop in the hood now too, called Walter G’s Pizza Obsession, (a recent delivery I ordered from there was very good). My Rainbow Dreams at Dickson Shops is good for veggies/vegans/fairtrade coffee and is also affordably priced. Au Lac is also great for veggos (and if it is your birthday they play you a song and give you icecream). The little cafe called Kickstart also does decent coffee and had some nice baked goods/sandwiches when I went in there.

    • Amanda Whitley

      We’ll have to make a longer list! Thanks Ashlee 🙂