5 restaurants to visit around the Grand Prix in Melbourne

Heading to the Grand Prix this April?  

It’s no secret that a day out at Melbourne’s Grand Prix event is a sure-fire way to work up a healthy appetite. While the fastest Ferraris and McLarens on the planet may be enough to get your heart racing, unless you’re in one of the catered marquees, the faster food options may leave a little less to be desired, especially if you are one of the 2.3 million Aussies enjoying special dietary requirements.  

Foodini takes the bellyache out of tracking down some of Melbourne’s top dietary-friendly feeds close to the action so you can focus on the race and keep yourself out of the pits. 

Grand Prix 2022 - Melbourne restaurant - Foodini - fancy hanks dinner

Fancy Hanks BBQ 

Track to table = 4.4km 
Keto/Carnivore, GF friendly  
Lunch Wed-Sun 

Melbourne’s very own meat mecca. If free-range Gippsland slow smoked meats are your thing while keeping your ketones up and your insulin down, look no further than this Bourke St institution. The American style BBQ eatery is no stranger to locals having upsized from its humble beginnings alongside the Victoria Markets to their new digs smack bang in the middle of the CBD. With a hefty drinks list to match the fare, kicking off your day before the  track with a lunch time platter is sure to fill your tank.  

What’s on our plate? 
Pitmaster BBQ Platter- $42 Deviled egg (V,GF), Nuts (V), 14 hour Smoked beef brisket (GF), 12 hour smoked pulled  pork (GF), Coleslaw with chicken salt mayo (GF), Fries with mojo mayo (GF) (Fries are optional of course!)

Grand Prix 2022 - Melbourne restaurant - Foodini - lona misa

Lona Misa  

Track to table = 4.5km  
Vego/ Vegan speciality/ GF Friendly 
Dinner 

Lona Misa is vegan food with attitude. The brainchild of renowned Melbourne chefs Shannon  Martinez of Smith & Daughters and Ian Curley of French Saloon, Kirk’s Wine Bar, the vego and vegan delicacies at Lona Misa will re-energize you after a long day on your feet with the piquant aromas and zesty flavours of this Latin inspired eatery. Self-described as loud, vibrant and unapologetic, think shredded chicken braised in a roasted tomatillo salsa, wrapped and steamed in mesa and topped with lime crema, or shredded oyster mushroom ceviche. Wait…chicken?! I hear you say? Correct! The team behind Lona Misa present some of their dishes complete with their 100% plant-based animal protein alternatives. Some are so ingenious you will be asking yourself “how do they do it?!” Conveniently located under the Ovolo Hotel, save this one for a big night out and work your way through their cocktail list as you enjoy the set menu. 

What’s on our plate?
Set menu- $85 per person (Check the website as menu is rotated seasonally)

Grand Prix 2022 - Melbourne restaurant - Foodini - st ali coffee roaster

St Ali coffee roasters  

Track to table = 2.5km 
Coffee/Vego/Vegan/GF Friendly  
Breakfast/Brunch/ Lunch 

Melbournians love to brag about their coffee and after a visit to St Ali Coffee Roasters for a late breakfast, you can see why. The chances of trying a St Ali cup of joe in Melbourne are pretty high these days (they supply much of the city’s top café’s with fresh beans), so why not head straight to the source. Big on vibe and even bigger on flavour, the high ceilings and heady aroma at this bean barn make the perfect accompaniment for brunch. With plenty of options for GF & V, and an all-day breakfast menu, everyone is sure to walk away caffeinated and content.  

What’s on our plate?
Herbivore Deluxe- $33 Poached eggs, avocado, fetta, mushrooms, tomato, potato hash, broccoli, toast Barista Breakfast – $15 
Selection of ST. ALi approved coffee served three ways — 
Cappuccino, espresso & filter

 
Grand Prix 2022 - Melbourne restaurant - Foodini - a25 pizzeria

A25 Pizzeria  

Track to table = 4km 
GF Pizza/Vego/ Vegan options
Lunch/Dinner  

Ask any coeliac or gluten intolerant foodie where to find the best gluten free pizza and they are sure to have a favourite recommendation. A good gluten pizza is always two things – 1.  Hard to find and 2. Always eaten quickly! Recently receiving accreditation by Coeliac  Australia, A25 is a pie worth chasing down. With 3 locations all close to the action A25 is an easy lunch or dinner option no matter where in Melbourne you are staying for the big event.  

What’s on our plate? 
Veggie Explosion 2.0 w gluten free base- $22.50 
Pappardelle Porchini- $16

Grand Prix 2022 - Melbourne restaurant - Foodini - firebird

Firebird 

Track to table = 5.2km 
GF/vego/ Vegan options  
Dinner  

Vietnamese seems to be one of the cuisines truly infused into the lifeblood of the Melbourne food scene. From the always affordable Pho strip- Victoria St- in Richmond to one of the many Vietnamese bakeries serving up a classic Bahn mi in Footscray, Vietnamese food and  Melbourne are great mates. Enter Firebird. A suave and modern take on traditional flavours brought together with the heat and flame of their very own woodfired oven. Firebird boasts a  predominantly gluten free menu with some delectable V options plus a few extras for the animal protein lovers in the group. The dimly lit diner boasts an impressive wine and cocktail list which compliments the smoke and char on the menu perfectly. Situated 30 seconds from Chapel St, the venue is the perfect weekend launch pad and a 5-minute cab ride from the  Albert Park trackside.  

What’s on our plate? 
Fire tossed pipis- $36 
“canh chua” reduction, charred tomato, pork oil, herbs + grilled Chinese donuts (GFO) Smoked Margarita- $21

By Jack Gibson