As we all know (and you’ll soon learn) Melbournians love their food. And even if you’re not a “foodie” (DEFINITION: Aussie slang for “someone who loves food”), you’ll soon become one.
Eating out is incredibly popular, but so is cooking from home.
Although I was eventually Kitchen Manager at my summer camp in Ontario, my largely-known secret is that I have never been that knowledgable about food. (Admittedly, I was most famous at Camp for seasoning all food with hundreds of cloves of garlic…good times!!!) :p
But soon wow’ed by the dinner parties of my Aussie friends, I know own 13 food magazines, a recipe scrapbook, and one fully-bound recipe book.
I still can’t cook. But here’s hoping you might fare better!
Although you can get Fruit and Veggies at the grocery stores, the most wonderful part of really realising you live in Australia (and the most environmental) is to shop for your produce at the markets.
This is one of my favourite weekend morning or afternoon events in Melbouren as everyone loads up their wheelie carts and heads off to patronise their regular Fruit shop.
Not only does it create a community feel, of knowing who you are buying your produce from (our Aussie fish man, Dr. Phil and the vegie spot we go to at Footscray Market greet us regularly and have even remembered to bring DVDs to lend to me!)
Which Market Where:
- South Melbourne Market: famous for it’s ‘dim-sims’ (just try them!) it’s a lovely market to stroll around and get a 10-minute neck and shoulder massage for $10 in. Wonderful produce.
- Victoria Market: here’s where to get all of your touristy treats–but I really caution you against buying electronics from here…what a nasty experience that was. Awesome deli section.
- Richmond Market: people from Richmond are absolutely in love with their market! You can get a massive tray of mangoes for dirt cheap, and I recently had a grape from there that took me 2 bites to eat!!
- Footscray Market: this little gem has a coffee man whose the ‘real deal’, a fantastic community feel and while not the largest selection (surely not for deli products) it’s my fav. Incredible fish selection.
Shelf Life: Where to Buy Groceries in Melbourne:
Hopefully you are as amazed by the hospitality and friendliness of Australians when you arrive as I was. We couldn’t find our nearest grocery store in Southbank, but at every shop we stopped to ask, they were opening address books and walking outside to try to point us in the right direction.
- Like Ontario, IGAs exist in Melbourne, but they are usually much smaller than Canada’s super stores. They are often “IGA Expresses” (and nearly like a 7-Eleven).
- Coles these are larger stores with a variation of Coles Expresses too. They carry their own product line that makes them quite affordable.
- Safeway (Woolworths) – these are great for their free magazine and 2 hours of free parking in South Melbourne! They are a larger store with most products.
- ALDI: lacking in the usual gloss of modern grocery stores this is by far the cheapest store to shop for groceries off the shelf. They are frequently in NSW, and we are starting to get them in Victoria more and more.