When the sun goes down, Melbourne’s northside comes to life, with delicious dining, live music experiences and entertainment beckoning. Choose your own adventure and explore Northcote’s night scene...
As far as casual dining goes, Welcome to Thornbury [520 High Streey, Northcote] is a mecca for food truck connoisseurs. This High Street haunt was formerly a car yard and now hosts a rotating lineup of some of Melbourne’s best food trucks. There’s also a bar (hello cocktails!) and beer garden to enjoy. From burgers to bahn mi, tacos to churros, you won’t be short of options here.
For an experience with the right balance between casual and refined, head to Estelle Bistro, [243 High Street, Northcote] a welcoming restaurant founded by renowned Aussie chef Scott Pickett. Here you’ll enjoy delicious modern Australian dishes injected with a hints of French cuisine. Expect flavour-packed mains like slow roasted lamb shoulder with brussels sprouts and pomegranate, with sides including chickpea fries with parmesan and sesame. The attention to detail here, not only in the food but also in its presentation and sleek decor, make for a dining experience you’ll be talking about for months.
If cultural eats are more your cup of tea, Lam Lam [209 High Street, Northcote] is sure to please. Serving their Vietnamese dishes with fresh, high-quality ingredients, expect fragrant meals with quick service in an unpretentious, understated setting. Crowd favourites include the pho, spring rolls and fried bean curd. Not only are meals here delicious, they’re also friendly on the old hip pocket.
Image credit: @estellebistro
Your dessert stomach will be all smiles after a sweet treat from this gelato joint. Black Waffle's [262 High Street, Northcote] flavour offerings include bubblegum (that’s both gluten free and vegan), peanut butter and jelly, honeydew melon, chocolate mint (also vegan) and much more. If you don’t feel like ice-cream, try one of their waffles or cannoli. Starting to feel a little tired? They also serve St Ali coffee.
Nestled in Westgarth Village, you’ll find this little gem, waiting to satisfy your sweet-tooth cravings. The gelato at is traditional which means no preservatives or artificial flavouring — just the good stuff. Il Melograno [76 High Street, Northcote] serves up classic flavours like strawberry, Dutch chocolate and lemon, as well as unique tastes like orange infused ricotta or chocolate and rosemary. Get your favourites served in a cup, cone or a brioche bun. If you visit when the weather’s cooler and need something to warm your insides, give the gelato hot chocolate a whirl — it’s the delicious Dutch chocolate gelato infused with hot milk.
Looking for more than just your typical cone of gelato? If you’ve been to Turkey, you might recognize the stretchy Turkish ice cream (Dondurma) being served up at Cuppa Turca [244 High Street Northcote]. Watch your ice cream twist and stretch as it’s plated up with the aid of a metal wand. Harun Yalcin, the owner of Cuppa Turca, spent months perfecting the texture of this cold treat of his homeland. This was no mean feat as the ingredient that makes the Dondurma stretch (salep), is rare outside of Turkey, so Harun developed an alternative. Choose from flavours like halva, rose, chocolate pistachio and the curious feta and melon, and for a real Turkish delight, try it served between baklava.
Image credit: facebook.com/cuppaturca
If you love music, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better place to go than the Northcote Social Club. It’s the quintessential Melbourne music venue and has been playing host to niche local and international musicians since 2004. The band room is smaller than many other Melbourne music venues, making for a more intimate experience of listening. Discover the next big thing in indie music while enjoying a few drinks into the wee hours.
Palace Westgarth is not your average local cinema. It’s situated inside a striking art deco building, that will take you back to a time when going to the movies was an opulent occasion. Westgarth covers all bases, screening a good mix of big-budget Hollywood films and alternative flicks, so there’s something to suit most tastes. Order a glass of wine or a coffee from the bar, sit back, enjoy the movie and relax in old-world style.
Fancy a nightcap after all the delicious dining? Head straight to Francesca’s Bar. It oozes cool, with its exposed brick walls accented with vintage frames and mirrors, and industrial lighting hovering over the bar. Did we mention it has a ping pong table, perfect for your late-night dose of competition? Add to this some neat beats and cocktails and the remainder of your night is set.