Look out past Platform 13 at Flinders St Station and you may notice a new alfresco dining space that has seemingly popped up out of nowhere.
Meet The Arbory, a new outdoor eatery and bar that has breathed new life into an unremarkable stretch of the Yarra River. It has taken four years to transform the space that was originally home to the Sandridge line since 1854 but has spent the last three decades gathering dust. The result is a 150 metre long space of timber decking that connects the Southbank footbridge with Princes Bridge, with the plane trees overhead creating a natural canopy.
The kitchen, two bars and bathrooms are housed inside a large corrugated iron container with the overall design overseen by Jackson Clements Burrows Architects.
Last week, Melbourne Girl had the great pleasure of experiencing Chef Nick Bennett’s specially designed tasting menu at The Arbory.
Open from 7:30am till late 7 days a week, The Arbory offers a varied menu of approachable comfort food including breakfast for early birds and burgers, toasted sandwiches and both small and large sharing plates from 11am.
The menu has been designed by Executive Chef Nick Bennett (Trocadero, Cecconi’s) and Chef Michael Fox (2012 Young Chef of the Year). A strong list of local and Spanish wines complements the food, along with around a dozen beers on tap including Brooklyn Lager and Stone and Wood.
To begin we were served roving canapés of mushroom and cheese croquettes ($3 ea) and a very tasty pea and herb arancini ($9), as we sampled some Cava (Spanish sparkling wine) and admired Melbourne in all its glory.
From the small plates menu we sampled the buffalo mozzarella and fried artichoke ($16), which was served with a refreshing green sauce, raisins and almonds. The steak tartare with cheese toast and Béarnaise sauce ($16) was overwhelmingly the favourite dish of the evening.
For vegetarians there is a very flavoursome roast onion and cauliflower pie ($27), which is served with a leek and pecorino salad. The roasted salmon ($26) is perfectly cooked and the fennel, orange and hazelnut salad is the perfect accompaniment.
For the carnivores, there is a peppered steak ($29) that is served with a Kohlrabi (part of the cabbage family) remoulade and crunchy battered onion rings.
Sweet tooth’s need not be disappointed with the Popcorn and Salted Caramel Sundae ($10) the pick of the dessert menu. Popcorn + salted caramel= heaven!
The Arbory Bar & Eatery is the perfect place to #stayawhile and take in Melbourne from a different perspective.
Flinders Walk, Melbourne
Ph: 03 9621 2260