Visiting your favourite beach on a hot and sunny day is one of the best things to do, and when you are a tourist beaches sure are the main attraction. But combining your favourite beaches with hot spot cafes can be difficult at times; especially when all you want is to relax at a cosy, European restaurant. Here are some of our favourite beach cafes for you to try on your next beach visit!
Fish and chips with a Spin
Beach Bites in Altona isn’t just a complete bargain, but a complete find because of its variations on the usual. They function chowder topped with a floating pillow of fried bread. There are sweet, salty kumara fritters, the hamburgers are made and pressed to order. Plus, as it is run by New Zealanders, you will find Kiwi soft drinks in the cupboard and a “fush and chups” pack on the blackboard.
Details: 137 Esplanade, Altona, 9398 1444
I scream, you scream…
Again, controversy will predominate but for sheer quantity of choice, Williamstown has got it in spades along Nelson Place from the bay. iScream is a cute and colourful parlour twirling frozen yoghurt in addition to ice-cream. Williamstown Ice Cream Shop boasts over a hundred ice-cream flavours (such as Red Bull and red velvet dough) in addition to triple-choc-coated cones and a popping candy dip.
Details: iScream, 225 Nelson Place; Williamstown Ice Cream Shoppe, 199 Nelson Place, 9399 9594; Capriccio, 171 Nelson Place, 9397 0887
There is nothing nicer than a brisk walk from the shore to start your day, but a zesty Lebanese breakfast of hummus, falafel and labne or a brekkie pizza with haloumi and roast tomato comes a close second. Mr. Lawrence is a beautiful, airy new restaurant at the bright white Art Deco London Hotel, where you can sit outside with a view of the bay, the Spirit of Tasmania and a plate of joyful food.
Details: 92 Beach St, Port Melbourne, 9077 4992
For the Melburnians who do not want to burn, NSHRY (pronounced Noshery) at Albert Park is as close as you can get to eating on the beach without those UV rays giving you a beating. This spunky glass box, perched between the footpath and the sand, has a lush, slightly Japanese-influenced menu (the umami hamburger is sensational). They serve coffee and they are licensed too, so it is excellent for a long black or a very long neck, while maintaining your complexion peachy and light.
Details: 129A Beaconsfield Pde, Albert Park, 9682 1077
If you want to enjoy an icy beer from the water without getting sand in your can, visit Authentic South, a slick microbrewery in a renovated Art Deco garage overlooking Half Moon Bay. Beer aficionados will have their work cut out for them picking between season, single batch or regular brews, or perhaps a tasting wheel, whilst cider fans have an easier time of it with the bright, refreshing Little Miss Muffet. There is an Argentinian menu — with great drinking snacks to dine on also.
Details: 298 Beach Rd, Black Rock, 1300 878 360
Get a picnic
If you work it right, a beachside picnic is about as glamorous as it is obtaining (just don’t go if it is windy or sandwiches take on a whole new meaning). Shake out a blanket, pop up that striped umbrella and feast out of a basket of baguettes, smoked salmon rillettes, oozy cheeses, cornichons and champagne, courtesy of this beachside Small French Deli — a perfect place to enjoy delicious foods from this European styled bistro.
Details: 524 Nepean Hwy, Bonbeach, 9776 0855
Coffee from the bay
Vintage shoppers will be enticed to a large treasure trove called Felix — and coffee fans should follow suit, stat. Inside you’ll find a stunning café called The Alley, with comfy sofas, laminex tables and a pink flamingo mural from the plant-filled street outside. Come here for knock-out java — espresso, pour overs and aeropresses; from local roasters Escobean and Little Rebel, in addition to house-baked treats like large, rustic scones and locally sourced Spicy foods such as a zippy Black Russian tomato bruschetta.
Details: 167 Point Nepean Rd, Dromana. 5981 4624