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Over many years in business, Earl.St has forged strong working relationships with a diverse range of professionals — from exciting new start-ups to global monoliths. We are constantly on the lookout for new partnerships with individuals and companies who can match our passion for surpassing industry standards and personal bests.

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EDUCATE: Yourself on Melbourne’s hottest restaurant openings.

One of our favourite things about Melburnians is their ability to create, innovate and think big even in times of incredible hardship. The fact that – after 3 months of lockdown – the streets are overflowing with new restaurants is a testament to the resilience of this beautiful, vibrant, multicultural city. To celebrate our forthcoming freedom, we’ve compiled a list of this year’s hottest and most highly anticipated restaurant openings – from a glamorous bar and kitchen tucked within a boutique city hotel to a lively French bistro amongst the hustle and bustle of Smith Street.

Let’s support these newcomers as well as all our favourite spots that have been hit so hard in the last couple of years. Here’s to a summer of wining, dining and reconnecting with loved ones.

Gimlet at Cavendish House
Since its grand opening earlier this year, Gimlet has already become a household name among discerning Melbourne foodies. The restaurant takes up residence on the ground floor of Cavendish house, a regal 1920s building on Russell Street, and is led by none other than Andrew McConnell of Marion, Cumulus Inc, Cutler & Co et al. The menu, designed in collaboration with head chef Collin Minds, is an ode to European culinary techniques and fresh Australian produce, complemented by an adventurous cocktail menu and elegant, Art Deco interiors. Perfect for romantic dinners, jaunty after work drinks and everything in between. 

Smith Street Bistrot –
As Scott Pickett super fans, we were over the moon when he unveiled his latest hospitality venture last week – especially when we heard it would have a particularly Parisian focus. Set to open in summer, Smith Street Bistrot will become a Collingwood institution, oozing with joie de vivre and inner-north vibrancy. Offering an express lunch menu complete with Quiche Lorraine, a formal dinner menu flaunting decadent Lobster Thermidor and a hearty list of organic and biodynamic wines, the restaurant is already looking like it might be our summer favourite. 

From Chris Lucas of Chin Chin, Baby Pizza and Hawker Hall, Society was possibly the most anticipated restaurant opening of 2021 – and it’s certainly living up to the hype. Nestled in the heart of the CBD, the striking venue encompasses four distinct dining areas including Society Dining Room, a supper-club style a la carte restaurant; Lillian Terrace, an elegant yet vibrant brasserie; The Lounge, a resplendent cocktail bar; and Private Dining, a series of immaculately appointed private dining rooms. The common theme amongst all sections is sophisticated design, culinary innovation and world-class service. We’re dying to visit. 

Yakimono –
While Society has had its name up in lights, Chris Lucas has been quietly working on another equally exciting project housed within the same building. Yakimono is a high-energy, charcoal-fired Japanese diner split over two levels, with an electrifying open-plan kitchen at the centre. Immerse yourself in bursting, smokey flavours along with kaleidoscopic interior finishes and buzzing inner-city atmosphere. 

La Madonna
One of Melbourne’s most dynamic hospitality duos, Danny Natoli and Adrian Li are the co-owners of Zia Rina’s Cucina in Armadale, with resumes spanning Neptune Food and Wine, Tokyo Tina and Saigon Sally. Their latest project, La Madonna, is a sumptuous restaurant and bar on the third floor of Next Hotel, Little Collins Street. Creating a striking impression from the outset, the venue is accessed via a sweeping marble staircase, opening out to an expansive dining and drinking enclave replete with leather booth seats, wooden barrels and glass bottles ageing various spirits. The menu fuses Li’s Hong Kong heritage with Natoli’s Sicilian one, culminating in an innovative dining experience that changes with the seasons.