Cover Photo: Alessandra Sio \ Unsplash

Sometimes the best cure for a bad case of homesickness is a (literal) taste of home.

As Australia's culinary capital, Melbourne is home to some of the nation’s finest dining destinations. Enriched by its proud, diverse community, the city is a vibrant gastronomic playground that spoils the palettes of tourists and locals alike, boasting infinite flavours and international cuisines - Filipino fare included. From classic street food to family comforts and even bagels with a Filipino twist, here are seven of the best places to get your taste of the Philippines, in and around Melbourne.

Read More: Filipino Food—How Can We Go Further? Margarita Forés, Chele Gonzàlez, And More Speak Out

1. Chibog

Since opening in 2020, Chibog has made massive waves across the Melbourne Filipinx community. This modern, whimsical restaurant serves an delectable array of Filipino favourites including kinilaw, crispy pata, kare kare, pancit malabon, biko, and sans rival. To top it all off, they even have calamansi juice, San Miguel beers, and innovative cocktails inspired by Filipino flavours like the ube macapuno colada and Pinoy old fashioned. If you ever feel like it’s time to chibog, you know where to go.

Tatler Tip: Chibog is known to host fun, festive dinners in collaboration with other talented Filipino chefs - follow their socials so you don't miss out!

2. GJ's Grill

GJ’s Grill is an establishment near and dear to the hearts (and stomachs) of many. Specialising in a variety of roasted and grilled delights, GJ’s is your go-to spot for lechon, barbecue pork, and roast chicken, among other mouthwatering offerings like sinigang and beef tapa

3. Kariton Sorbetes

Led by the dynamic duo that is chef John Rivera (S. Pellegrino Young Chef Pacific 2018, and former head chef at the Restaurant Lûmé) and pastry chef Minh Duong (former head pastry chef at Maha), Kariton Sorbetes serves artisanal gelato in familiar and funky Filipino flavours. Whether you take home the classics like ube halaya and buko pandan or dig into their more experimental tubs like truffle keso and champorado, their ingenious take on dirty ice cream is sure to leave you wanting more.

Tatler Tip: keep an eye on their socials to snag their seasonal flavours before they sell out!

4. Hoy Pinoy

If you’ve ever come across a large crowd in front of a fragrant, smoke-filled tent at one of Melbourne’s many food markets, there’s a good chance that the never-ending queue was for Hoy Pinoy - and yes, the food does taste as good as it smells (if not better). While the glorious aroma of their succulent barbecue pork is more than enough to seduce you into line, Hoy Pinoy also provides other delicious offerings including lumpiang shanghai, pork liempo, and meal kits for longganisa, sisig, and many more.

5. Migrant Coffee

Migrant Coffee is not just another Melbourne café - step into their inviting space to discover delicious bagels given playful Filipino twists. Expand your world of bagels and opt to add coconut jam or atsara to any of their bagel bases, or for a heftier meal, try out their Bok Bok Manok, Pastrami Mami, or Summer Ensalada.

Tatler Tip: mark your calendars for Sunday, the 11th of July! The Entree Pinays are hosting the Merkado market from 9AM to 2PM at Migrant Coffee with Filipino food, clothing, and other goodies available for purchase.

6. Boba Bar

Get irresistibly sweet and silky taho delivered straight to your doorstep with Boba Bar!  While you’re at it, check out their other sure-to-please products like the Boba Partea Kit with boba, sago, and three tea flavours, and browse through their Instagram to see all the other inventive desserts and beverages they’ve done for events and catering - the malunggay strawberry milk and ube basque cheesecake are especially impressive.

7. Sweet Cora Cakes

Grace Guinto fuses her kitchen craftsmanship and Philippine heritage by producing beautiful, unique sweets available from Sweet Cora Cakes. Scroll through her baking adventures to find turon banoffee pie, calamansi and poppyseed puto, cornflake crunch polvoron, and even ube swirl cheesecake with an Oreo crust!

Read More: Meet The Food Evangelists Promoting Filipino Cuisine Across The Globe

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