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The latest places to eat in Canberra.
Forget the stretchy pants. Find yourself a kaftan. You’re gonna need it. We’ve rounded up more than 30 (count ’em) new places to eat in Canberra.
ANU POP-UP REUNION VILLAGE
The ANU’s stop-gap measure to prevent on-campus culture from stagnating while the main student amenities in Union Court are being redeveloped, this pop-up has plenty of enduring appeal.
We’re talking the street food stylings of Brod, La Empanada, Mikebabz, Mr Papa, What The Phở and Momo’s Tastes of Tibet alongside Coffee Lab, Kubrick, Sushi Smith, Zambrero Uni Corner Café and Molo Live bar.
Even if you’re not a uni student, the food is worth the trip to campus.
Read more about the ANU Pop-Up here.
ANU Pop-Up Reunion Village | Australian National University, Acton | hpop-up.anu.edu.au
AU LAC ROYAL VEGETARIAN CUISINE
Au Lac’s Dickson original has been a vegan institution since 2000, and the news that a Woden outpost was opening was met with fevered enthusiasm from Canberra’s meat-free eaters.
The fresh, quality and healthy vegetarian Vietnamese food will please any diner—vegetarian or not—and the menu is extensive (we’re talking pages and pages of deliciousness). Try the Claypot Sensations—you won’t regret it!
Au Lac Woden | Shop G90A Corinna Street, Phillip | aulac-restaurant.com.au
AN NGUYEN VEGAN
Vegan is the new black. This Kingston vegan restaurant opened quietly in July and is also grounded in Vietnamese cuisine. Everything on the menu is prepared using solely plant-based ingredients and it is huge! The dessert section looks especially delicious, and there is a selection of $12.50 lunchboxes, perfect for inner south workers.
Au Nguyen Vegan | 54 Giles Street, Kingston | facebook.com/AnNguyenVegan
BRODBURGER AT CAPITAL BREWING Co.
It won’t be just beer drinkers heading to Dairy Road when Capital Brewing Co open their Fyshwick brewery and tap room today—burger fans are sure to be beating a path to that iconic little red van dishing up Canberra’s most famous burgers.
Brodburger will be serving up a shorter menu than at their Glassworks HQ: four burgers two hot dogs and cheesy fries to complement the 12 beers brewed onsite.
Families will also love it, with a beer garden and cubby house for the kids. Oh, and there’s beer yoga (maybe leave the kids at home for that one!)
Brodburger at Capital Brewing Co | Building 3, 1 Dairy Road, Fyshwick | capitalbrewing.co
Something fishy is going on in Braddon—Socrates Kochinos is taking the humble fish and chip shop to the next level. Catch will receive daily deliveries of a selection of fish and you’ll be able to choose whether to have it battered, crumbed or grilled. You then choose your sides from a range of salads and hand-cut chips.
Everything will be made on the premises—from the tartare sauce to marinades—and a glass display will showcase fresh varietal seafood on ice, all of which can be cooked and consumed on site, or taken home for later.
And if the seafood doesn’t entice you, how about some 70’s classics or Chiko rolls, corn jacks, potato scallops, dim sims or pineapple fritters—all chased down with an ice-cream sandwich for dessert.
Catch is set to open this spring—no firm date has yet been announced. Read the full story here.
Catch | Corner of Eloura and Lonsdale Streets, Braddon.
Café by day and dining room by night, Circula hopes to create welcoming environment for family and friends. A focus on Canberra produce—local wines, farm-fresh organic eggs, meats and seafood— plus single origin coffee, cool cocktails and warm jazz make this Kingston Foreshore addition one to check out.
Find out more about Circula here.
Circula | 17/19 Eastlake Parade, Kingston Foreshore | circula.net.au
Locally-owned DL Collective has taken over the space previously occupied by Kingston and Co. in Westfield Belconnen, serving up fresh and flavourful meals from 7:30am to 5:30pm.
Geared around vegetarian and gluten free offerings, the menu balances the ‘naughty’ and ‘nice’. Our picks? The French Toast: brioche french toast, caramelised banana, nutella, fresh strawberries, ice cream, maple syrup, walnut praline and the Mushroom Burger: panko crumbed roasted field mushroom, halloumi, roasted capsicum, zucchini, sriracha kewpie mayo, baby cos, served with chips. The coffee is Single O, and there’s a range of inhouse baked goods.
DL Collective | Westfield Belconnen, Lathlain Street, Belconnen | instagram.com/dlcollective
THE DOUGHNUT DEPARTMENT
The Doughnut Department, open now in the city’s No Name Lane Precinct, shuns the typical doughnut style (small, mass produced and full of pre-bought tinned fillings and toppings). Instead, their larger handmade doughnuts are made by Chef Nathan Frost with yeast-raised dough, table-cut by hand and filled with fine sweet—and savoury—ingredients.
The Doughnut Department | No Name Lane Precinct, 40 Marcus Clarke Street, Canberra City | thedoughnutdept.com
ESPRESSO ROOM CANBERRA CENTRE
It’s the latest addition to this wildly successful local coffee franchise and it’s right at home in the modern confines of Canberra Centre’s Beauty Precinct. Espresso Room’s city incarnation is small and intimate, but with a glamorous feel thanks to marble bars and brass trim. Hang out on a stool at the at the window to watch the passing trade and wait for your caffeine to hit. Or just grab it and go.
Customers are encouraged to try a new way of imbibing their caffeine. Have you tried a filter coffee? A cold brew, a batch brew, or a pour-over? This is the place to do it.
Read more about Espresso Room Canberra Centre here.
Espresso Room Canberra Centre | Ground level, shop DG38, on the Bunda Street side of Canberra Centre | espressoroom.com.au
The civic stalwart has been given a new lease on life by Fish Zafar and Hazel Tate (also owners of Mister Zee and The Hospitality Store), but retaining many of the elements that made the original Gus’ such an institution. Open from 7am to 4pm every day, the all-day menu features modern classics and house-ground coffee will be sure to please city workers.
Gus’ Place | 8 Bunda Street, Canberra City | gusplace.com.au
From the team behind East Street Canberra, whose Vietnamese street food has been delighting local tastebuds for the last couple of years, Hello Hanoi is soon to open in the City Bus Interchange.
Offering Banh Mi, Pho, Ca Phe Sua Da, juice and more, we cannot wait.
Hello Hanoi Canberra | Alinga St, Canberra City (behind platform 5, city bus interchange) | www.instagram.com/hellohanoicbr
Dickson caffiends will rejoice at the news that the old Suburban space is set to get an all-day café from the team ONA Coffee and The Cupping Room.
Set to open in October, The Canberra Times reports that “Highroad will be open 7am til midnight daily, offering up all-day dining, snacks, dinner and drinks.”
Read The Canberra Times story here.
Highroad | 1 Wolley Street, Dickson | facebook.com/Highroad.cbr
LE BON MÉLANGE
The road to opening Le Bon Mélange certainly wasn’t a short one for Natalie Vanden Bosch. When we spoke to her in March 2016, she said “My biggest dream now is opening a French patisserie—I want to create an eclectic place where people can get lost in a moment, transporting them to what I imagine to be a little piece of Europe”. She’s certainly succeeded.
This charming little corner really is a world away from Gungahlin and dishes up the most delectable range of sweet treats. All day breakfast served 7am to 4pm Wednesday to Sunday also has those with a savoury tooth sorted.
Read more about Le Bon Melange here.
Le Bon Mélange | Corner Bruning Street and Gungahlin Place, Gungahlin | facebook.com/parisbrest22
LOLO AND LOLA
They gathered a loyal following during their team at Westside Acton Park and now LOLO and LOLA have found a permanent home for their delicious Filipino Cuisine. A weekly-changing menu, $10 lunch specials, their always-amazing desserts, and a pop-up dinner series set for this month already have a loyal following flocking to their doors.
Read more about Lolo and Lola here.
Lolo and Lola | 3 Watson Place, Watson | loloandlola.com.au
You may have tasted his Dutch delights at the Old Bus Depot Markets, and now they’re available at Willem den Hartog’s L’Orange Patisserie in Manuka. Get your hands on ‘Vlaaien’—flans filled with flavoured custard and fresh fruit, ‘Stroop Koeken’—shortbread biscuits filled with a goey caramel, and many more sweet treats.
L’Orange Patisserie | Shop 50, 11-17 Bougainville Street, Manuka Court, Griffith | lorangepatisserie.com.au
The Bailey’s Corner space that was home to Tosolini’s for many years will once again be filled with the aroma of wood-fired pizza when Luca Brasserie opens soon. According to The Riot Act, the pizzas will be named after characters from The Godfather and the menu will feature “Mediterranean styled share items, including antipasto and generously portioned seafood platters, will be offered alongside pasta dishes and steaks.”
Read The Riot Act story here.
Luca Brasserie | Baileys Corner, Corner London Circuit & East Row, Canberra City
MARKET ST EATS
Just opened in Belconnen Markets, Market St. Eats looks set to become a foodie destination in its own right. Serving Lonsdale St Roasters coffee, a full breakfast and lunch menu as well as quick options such as salads, bagels and desserts, we have our eye on their cronuts (and their Eggs Benny!).
Market St Eats | Belconnen Markets, Lathlain Street, Belconnen | belconnenmarkets.com.au
Milkys Diner is set to take over the original birthplace of its parent-café, Milkcrate, and it’s going retro. Inspired by old school American diners, patrons will sit at the bar to be served pies, hot dogs, Philly cheese steak sandwiches, Po’ boys, shakes and black coffee (with free refills – just like the movies!).
Milkys Diner is set to open in a couple of weeks.
Milkys Diner | Shop 6, 12 Moore Street, Canberra City | chttp://belconnenmarkets.com.au
Mookie Burger combines American-style burgers with a Japanese twist: think a classic beef burger with special Mookie sauce or a Southern-style chicken burger coated in a mixture handcrafted from 32 ingredients.
Fries will be getting the royal treatment with a range of delish-sounding toppings, and there will be sweet potato fries with maple syrup and crispy bacon or sweet paprika, sour cream and chives.
For dessert? Concretes—American-style sundaes where custard is mixed with toppings like Oreo and chocolate. Oh, and a peanut butter miso shake. Seriously.
Read more about Mookie here.
Mookie Burger | 28 Genge Street, Civic | mookie.com.au
A thirty-minute drive from Canberra at Shaw Vineyard, the restaurant takes its name from the historic mid-19th century wool producing property that was taken over by the Shaw family and turned into a vineyard 19 years ago.
Replacing the vineyard’s previous restaurant, Flint in the Vines, Executive Chef and General Manager Keith Jones says that Olleyville’s food will be “local, rustic and wholesome”.
Read more about Olleyville here.
Olleyville | 34 Isabel Drive, Murrumbateman | olleyville.com.au
An English high tea house and Parisian patisserie, Passiontree Velvet is a dessert café celebrating the best of what Europe has to offer. Inspired by Anne Maria Russell, The Duchess of Bedford, it provides a range of high teas to suit any occasion—think ribbon sandwiches, freshly baked scones, French macarons, cakes, a tempting array of chocolates and quality full-leaf teas and craft blends by Harney & Sons.
Opening second half of September.
Passiontree Velvet | Canberra Centre Beauty Precinct, Bunda Street, Canberra City | passiontreevelvet.com
RAKU is aiming to bring the bustling streets of Tokyo to Bunda Street. Promising to be a sleek, modern Japanese bar and restaurant, the venue is helmed by Head Sushi Chef, Hao Chen, and features a traditional robata grill and sushi bar.
A 70+-dish menu offers dishes like scampi and truffle, kingfish sashimi, Moreton Bay bug tempura and staple gyozas. There is also a massive selection of Japanese whiskey and sake.
RAKU | 148 Bunda Street, Canberra City | rakudining.com.au
Rashays is practically a compulsory Westfield inclusion, with both Belconnen and Woden now boasting this ‘family dining’ destination.
Uncomplicated meals, huge serving sizes, massive kids’ menu, vegetarian and gluten-free options and ridiculous desserts make this a no-brainer when you’re heading out with the kids in tow.
Rashays | Westfield Belconnen and Woden | rashays.com
It was Francisco’s Mexican for years and now there’s a new kid filling the light-filled atrium space in Manuka Village. Secret Garden is, as the name suggests, a hidden gem and it certainly looks worth the hunt.
The interior is modern and bright, the menu inviting—an Asian influence hinting at the owners: Jack Zhong, co-owner of Kingston pollie haunt, Wild Duck, and commercial banker Bill Wu.
The perfect spot for a Campos coffee post-manicure or Witchery spree.
Secret Garden | Manuka Village, 33 Bougainville Street, Manuka | secretgardenmanuka.com.au
In Ellacure’s central Bruce location, Stanley’s has quietly sprung up. The new name is obviously drawn from the suburb’s forefather, Prime Minister Stanley Bruce and in place of Ellacure’s relaxed fine dining, Stanley’s proudly proclaims itself a pub.
The menu is made up of gastropub classics—schnitty, pizzas, Parma and steak—with an impressive beer list to wash it down. Families are looked after with a Junior Menu and footy fans will love the live games.
Stanley’s | 2/21 Battye Street, Bruce | stanleys.net.au
THE EUROPEAN & CO
Just across the New South Wales border is a fresh take on the classic QBN Steakhouse. Chef Gurdit Singh’s menu focuses on seasonal and fresh ingredients, brought to life with a rustic yet refined cooking style, and generous portions.
The European and Co | 101/103 Monaro Street, Queanbeyan | theeuropeanandco.com
The answer to your salad dreams. That’s the tagline, and The Goods does what it says on the box. There’s a rotating menu of fresh plant-based, gluten-free salads, to which you can add protein and dressing of your choice.
There’s also a delicious smoothie menu (Salted Caramello, anyone?), customisable breakfast bowls, and a range of a menu of tempting toasts.
Read more about The Goods here.
The Goods Wholefood | No Name Lane, 40 Marcus Clark Street, Civic | instagram.com/itsthegoods
THE KINGSTON COLLECTIVE
The newest venture from the couple behind Braddon’s Knightsbridge Penthouse, The Kingston Collective is an ambitious venture, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days.
The menu has a little something for everyone: for breakfast, Acai Bowls and Ancient Grain Porridge will please the health-conscious, while the Bubble-O-Bill Waffle (Bubble gum ice cream, fair floss, chocolate sauce, caramel, strawberry) may be one best saved for Cheat Day. Dinner is a range of classic bistro dishes, with woodfired pizzas a feature.
Read more about The Kingston Collective.
28/6 Trevillian Quay Kingston | 02 6170 3844 | facebook.com/thekingstoncollective
THE PUBLIC PLACE AT DAIRY ROAD
Not so much a new place to eat, as a makeover of an old favourite. The Station Bar and Café has had a spruce up and re-opened as The Public Place in the Dairy Road precinct, which is fast emerging as the next big thing.
The sister to the Chisholm café (opened this year), it’s open weekdays from 6.30am to 3.30pm, offering a breakfast and lunch menu of reliable favourites.
The Public Place at Dairy Road | 1 Dairy Road, Fyshwick | stationbarandcafe.com.au
They’re a shopping centre staple in New South Wales, and the first ACT outlet opened quietly in Westfield Woden a few months ago. Nestled just near Country Road, the shed is a little urban oasis—earthy tones, industrial metal, concrete and brickwork and soft greenery—among a bustling shopping centre.
They serve a seriously smooth coffee, and we have it on good authority (hello, Mr HerCanberra) that their Egg and Bacon Burger is up their with Canberra’s best.
The Shed | Westfield Woden, Keltie Street, Phillip | theshedcafe.com.au
Who doesn’t love toast? Whether you’re a fan of smashed avo, eggs, cheese, or even just the classic butter, toast is the wind beneath our breakfast wings. Choose from a variety of breads and sweet and savoury toppings for a really satisfying meal—personally, we love the Avo Good Day—avo with chilli flakes and lemon, with a side of halloumi.
In good news for breakfast lovers in general, the Toasted menu won’t be limited only to toast—there are waffles, acai bowls, porridge, baked goods, a salad-of-the-day, and toasties.
Read more about Toasted here.
Toasted | 22 Lonsdale Street, Braddon | facebook.com/toastedcanberra
YAT BUN TONG
Having conquered Woden and Braddon, Yat Bun Tong is bringing their plump little morsels of deliciousness to Westfield Belconnen. Dumplings, steamed buns and yum cha are the star attraction here, but you’ll find a wide range of Asian delights on the menu. And it’s always hard to resist BBQ Roast Duck.
Opening end of October.
Yat Bun Tong | Westfield Belconnen, Lathlain Street, Belconnen | westfield.com.au/belconnen
Feature image: Tim Bean Photography.