Experience rich Vietnamese culture and cuisine, enjoy live music, get your sporting fix and drink craft beer all in the heart of Richmond.
Richmond is home to a thriving Asian community and Victoria Street, also known as Little Saigon, is a veritable hot spot for Vietnamese eateries where fragrant aromas and tasty morsels abound. Some swear that the steaming bowls of pho at I Love Pho are some of the best in Melbourne. For quick and delicious takeaway bahn mi, pork rolls, coconut scrolls and mung bean desserts, Nhu Lan Bakery is your one-stop shop. If you’re after a more extensive menu of Vietnamese dishes, head to Pho Hung Vuong 2.
Alternatively, take matters into your own hands and spend an afternoon at OTAO Kitchen on Victoria Street. Owner Ha Nguyen — one of the friendliest guys in Richmond — runs half-day cooking classes where he will take you through the cuisines of India, China, his native Vietnam and many more. It’s loads of fun, delicious and what’s more, you’ll take the lessons home with you! They also run super-popular kids classes.
The suburb is also home to some of Melbourne’s finest restaurants. Minamishima is regularly mentioned in ‘best restaurant in Melbourne’ conversations; its sushi is the stuff of legend. Other fine dining institutions include Noir and its French delicacies, Saint.Urban, featuring classy European fare and a wine list to match, and the smooth wine bar The Ugly Duckling.
Richmond is home to one of Melbourne’s best music venues, the Corner Hotel. From rock to reggae, it has drawn punters to its sticky carpet for decades. Browse the gig guide to see when your next favourite band is playing. As well as its renowned band room, its rooftop beer garden is perfect for late-afternoon, pre-gig drinks as well as a post-work tipple with friends.
No overview of Richmond is complete without mentioning the mighty Melbourne Cricket Ground. The MCG is the home of Australian Rules football, and from March to September the stadium erupts with the sound of footy-mad Melburnians. It’s also where you’ll find the National Sports Museum, an exploration of Australia’s love for sport.
Afterwards, if you’re looking for a bar with a difference, check out Mountain Goat, a local brewery hidden in Richmond’s backstreets. Join a free brewery tour — there’s one every Wednesday night — or pop into the bar for a freshly poured pint and delicious pizza in the evening (open Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays). Another place to try is Slow Beer, Australia’s first dedicated craft beer store. Its beer cafe has four regularly rotating drops on tap and, if you’re feeling peckish, cheeses, panini and charcuterie are also on offer.
If you wake up in Richmond feeling a little worse for wear, you’ll find one of the best breakfasts in Melbourne at Pillar of Salt. Take up a seat at the communal table or hide away in a booth and tuck into a dragon fruit chia bowl or buttermilk pancakes. If you want to be more adventurous go for the Greek Board of scrambled eggs with saganaki, Greek dips and pita and more, or the Eggs Royale — smoked salmon, beetroot-pickled baby corn on kipfler potatoes. Whatever you choose, it’s sure to start your day off on the right foot.