20th April, 2014
LYGON ST, EAST BRUNSWICK
Not to be confused with the spag bol tourist drag in Carlton, Lygon St in East Brunswick is a diverse offering of eating. As DAN STOCK discovers, you can find great Japanese and Middle Eastern fare, excellent coffee and the world’s best pizza.
1001 Lygon St, 9380 6680
Brothers Charlie and Antoine Taouk celebrate the food and recipes passed down to them from their “Teta” Mona. “All the recipes are our grandmother’s,” Antoine says, and include dishes such as special lamb cigars, chilli snapper and home-style falafel. The fatte hommus, a spiced lamb stack, has proved popular since the duo opened the doors four months ago. And the salads, with an emphasis on wholefoods such as brown rice, are as healthy and good for you as they are delicious.
MIRAMAR NUT SHOP
313 Lygon St, 9387 6805
Mohammed El Ayoubi has been selling nuts and other Middle Eastern supplies at Miramar since 1978. Along with the dry roasted nuts for which the shop is famed – warm roasted hazelnuts, almonds or pistachios are just $18/kg – there’s a huge range of legumes and other dried goods sold by weight. There’s halva and many other sweet treats, too.
99 Lygon St, 9380 2320
Johnny di Francesco was crowned No.1 in the world last week at the Parma Pizza World Championship. You can try the world’s best margherita at his restaurant, 400 Gradi. The defining characteristic of a neopolitan-style pizza is in the cooking, he says: “We cook at 400C (hence the) for only 90 seconds.” Bellisimo!
THE BRUNSWICK EAST PROJECT
438 Lygon St, 9381 1881
The Padre Coffee roaster/café arrived on the strip in 2008, and while the Brunswick East Project is still Padre’s spiritual home, the brand has grown to include cafés in South Melbourne, Queen Vic market and League of Honest Coffee in the CBD. At the Project, you can pick up an expertly made coffee along with fre4ashly roasted beans and accoutrements for home in this clinically cool space.
152 Lygon St, 9388 1505
This slick Japanese izakaya has been serving sexy sashimi and yakitori for the past 2 ½ years. The warehouse space is filled with stylish booths, bar seating and long communal tables, perfect for groups to gather and sip sake (the range is one of the city’s best). The pan-fried gyoza have fans who come from afar, and there’s good line in all manner of fried delights.
RUSSO CONTINENTAL BUTCHERS
115 Lygon St, 9380 1166
At first blush Russo looks more like a deli and foodstore that does a bit of meat on the side – and it’s true to a point. You’ll find great cheese, lots of smallgoods, salads and sauces and sausages, including home-style cacciatore. But you’ll also be able to pick up some extraordinary steaks along with quail, poussin and porketta.
500 Lygon St, 9939 7301
What began as supply store for hobby apiarists and their beehives has evolved over the past three years into a full DIY foodstore, where you’ll find everything needed for your kitchen to be self-sufficient. So along with beekeeping equipment (and a range of local honeys for home) there’s beermaking equipment, DIY cheesemaking and grain mills, where you can have your own flour milled on the spot.