Brunswick is known for its fine food, bustling streets, culture and live music scene, which are reflected in the trendy restaurants that reside here. One street in particular is the iconic Lygon St. There are many reasons to visit Lygon St, the biggest being their reputation for being a hotspot for some of the most sought after restaurants in Melbourne.
Apart from being a melting pot of traditional cuisines from around the world, Lygon St is famous for having a great selection of alfresco cafés and Italian restaurants. Named after the British cabinet minister Lord Lygon, many consider Lygon St to be the ‘Little Italy of Melbourne’ or the ‘Italian Precinct’ due to its thriving Italian community.
Whether you’re looking for a romantic dinner for two, a night out on the town or a family-friendly atmosphere with plenty of entertainment, Brunswick has it all. If you want to know where to find the most delicious food in Brunswick, then here are the best restaurants on Lygon St you absolutely have to check out!
Rumi has earnt itself a reputation for being one of the go-to restaurants when in Brunswick, serving some of the best Middle Eastern food in town. Their menu includes choices from the a la carte menu (ranging from small, medium to large choices) and banquet style dishes – specialising in charcoal meats/seafood and a variety of vegetarian meals as well.
Rumi is the perfect setting for a casual mid-week meal, after work drinks or special occasion dining including private or corporate events.
The ethos behind Rumi is to provide a diverse range of food options for everyone to enjoy. Rumi caters to all dietary requirements, including a large selection of both vegan and vegetarian dishes to choose from – to create a seamless night out that everyone can participate and enjoy.
Some of their signature dishes include their caramelised eggplant ‘M’nazleh’ braised with tomatoes & green peppers and their fried cauliflower with caramelised onion, currants and pine nuts. For the meat lovers, their fall-of-the-bone marinated lamb shoulder with mint sekanjabin (sweet and sour mint dressing) and persian style meatballs cooked in tomato and saffron, accompanied with labne.
But you really can’t leave without trying their Sigara Böreği, cheese cigars filled with haloumi, feta and kasseri (cheese) – they’re bound to please anyone, vegetarian or not. Rumi now delivers meal kits to wider Melbourne, Regional Vic and interstate with Providoor, making it easy for you to enjoy their delicious middle-eastern style cuisine from the comfort of your own home.
Another middle eastern restaurant that mustn’t be overlooked is Mankoushe, a family-run business that’s located in both Lygon St, Brunswick East and inside Schoolhouse Studios in Collingwood.
‘Mankoushe has built a menu that reflects the depth of Middle Eastern cuisine, stretching from Iran to Morocco, while working with the best ingredients Australia has to offer.’
Brothers, Jady and Hady and the rest of the Choucair family are passionate about sharing their love of Middle Eastern food with the public. Jad is the chef, brother Hady is the baker and their mother Gisele is the soul of the restaurant and often working hard behind the scenes in the kitchen. Mankoushe secrets lie in a notebook, where Gisele journaled her recipes over the years, which has helped to formulate the menu that’s offered today.
Their menu is market-driven, which means their menu changes frequently to reflect the best of the produce that they came across on their trip to the market. Their traditional baked goods consist of many crowd favourites including Zaatar, herb bread with oregano, sumac and sesame seeds, halloumi pie and falafel wraps. Their current Autumn menu reflects delicacies such as pumpkin pilaf rice with pine nuts and dill and of course their signature slow-cooked lamb shoulder with butter beans.
Mankoushe is available for takeaway across multiple different services, including UberEats, Deliveroo and Meulog, giving you plenty of opportunities to enjoy their delicious meals.
The Moldy Fig
In the mood for something a little different? Then head out to The Moldy Fig, an authentic cajun creole restaurant that brings a slice of New Orleans to Melbourne.
The original concept behind The Moldy Fig was dreamed up by Dorelle and her husband many moons ago.
‘Together we managed, operated and owned restaurants, pubs & bars across England and Australia with myself as the chef and him running the FOH. One day my husband gave me my first Cajun Creole cookbook, which I began cooking from regularly. There was nothing like it yet in Australia, and combined with our personal love of jazz & blues music, the seed was set and we knew that we needed to build a piece of New Orleans in Australia.
We knew that music had to be a core part just like it is to the culture of New Orleans. We host live music every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night and Sunday lunch featuring great local talent performing their own originals and well-loved standards and classics from jazz & blues.’
The Moldy Fig menu consists of delicious, classic dishes including slow-roasted lamb ribs, jambalaya, blackened chicken and gumbo – the gumbo recipe is over 100 years old. As well dishes of Dorelle’s own creation that were inspired by the traditions of Cajun Creole in fusion with great local produce.
Dorelle is a firm believer that everyone should be able to enjoy a great meal no matter their dietary requirements which is why the menu facilitates gluten-free, vegan & vegetarian dietary needs and can cater to low FODMAP/no onion garlic as well.
The Origin Tales
Vegans, this one’s for you. The Origin Tales is another family run business, the two brothers from Singapore have been cooking up a storm of vegetarian cuisine for more than 20 years. The Origin Tales prides itself on serving authentic vegan cuisine, while providing a comfortable dining space that’s versatile to suit just about any occasion.
Their menu is extensive and extremely diverse. Nothing on the Origin Tales menu contains onion or garlic, which is perfect for FODMAP sufferers.
We’ve heard great things about their Zinger Tower Burger – consisting of a crunchy fried chicken patty, layered with bacon, lettuce, tomato, cucumber and topped with burger sauce. Another dish that mustn’t be overlooked (according to plenty of positive reviews) is the Sizzling Hotplate Noodle – a delicious, sizzling dish of pan fried noodles combined with thick BBQ sauce.
The Origin Tales is available on multiple delivery services including Menulog, Ubereats and Doordash (we’re sure there’s more) so we encourage you to explore their diverse range of options to enjoy.
The Stonemill 347 Food & Wine Bar
The Stonemill offers a real Sicilian experience, down to the hand rolled pasta that’s served fresh every morning. The venue was established in December 2013, and has become one of Melbourne’s best kept secrets ever since.
Their food relies on a simple formula; cook with passion and use fresh, market-driven ingredients that cater to the season. Bringing a wealth of experience from his previous ventures in the CBD, owner Salvo’s vision was to create a relaxed homely atmosphere, offering something for everyone.
Salvo’s Sicilian heritage highlights a warm, at times a bit cheeky, hospitable and charismatic personality; combined with a passion for people, food and service. Salvo’s partner Marie joined the Restaurant a few years ago and together they run this local hidden gem.
“Our Artisan philosophy stretches to our fresh pasta, with signature dishes such as our fluffy soft Gnocchi renowned across Melbourne or our Agnolotti, Lasagna. Then of course the popular Cartoccio or Zuppa di Pesce, the delicious variety of pasta, seafood, meats, desserts, the list keeps going.
This cosy Sicilian restaurant welcomes everyone. It is suited to an intimate dinner for two; or a relaxed get together with friends and family.”
Royal Eatery is an authentic Indian restaurant situated on Lygon Street in the heart of Brunswick East.
Their menu offers a wide variety of dishes, including specialised meals featuring chicken, seafood, beef, lamb, and vegetarian style meals.
Their signature dishes include Butter Pumpkin Masala and Daal Makhni, and delicious meat options including Rogan Josh and Lamb Vindaloo. If you’re a little uncertain about what you feel like but know that you’re in the mood for something delicious than Royal Eatery is the venue for you.
These are our top picks for the best restaurants on Lygon St. For a truly spectacular breakfast, lunch or dinner, head down to Lygon St and experience its thriving community atmosphere for yourself! Whether you are in the mood for a delicious meal, a proper Italian coffee, a gelato or a walk through the beautiful nearby parks and gardens, Lygon St has something for everyone.