A gameshow-slash-disco party combining confetti, glitter and twerking; a much-anticipated new city rooftop spot opens; and three of Melbourne’s best eateries hit the coast. Here’s what Broadsheet Melbourne editor Ellen Fraser will be checking out this month.
Christmas is over, but that doesn’t mean the excessive eating has to stop. Until the 10th, Bluebonnet Barbecue is throwing a Texas-style bottomless barbeque party where you can stuff yourself full of a never-ending supply of smoked meats from chef Chris Terlikar. $65 will get you all the slow-cooked brisket, ribs, sausages and sides you can handle over a two-hour sitting, and there’ll be drink specials too. Book ahead.
Anything involving confetti, glitter and twerking has my undivided attention, so I’m looking forward to a performance by London’s queen of cabaret, Miss Behave (La Soirée, La Clique, Absinthe). She’s presenting a wild night of subversive games, mischievous antics and full-audience participation that’s been described as equal parts gameshow and disco party. It’s on until the 27th.
Cheek is expanding upward. The team behind the contemporary American barbeque spot (also responsible for Preston’s Dexter and Takeaway Pizza) has long-promised us a rooftop, and in mid January it’ll land, along with a bar directly above the dining room.
While technically not in Melbourne (it’s a short jaunt across Bass Strait), the sometimes bizarre, sometimes confronting, never mediocre Mona Foma is happening from the 13th to the 20th. After 10 years in Hobart, David Walsh is taking his award-winning summertime fiesta of art, entertainment and music to Launceston for the first time. There’ll be live performances from Courtney Barnett, Swedish R’n’B artist Neneh Cherry and Oneohtrix Point Never alongside a host of visual artists. Don’t miss Rosie Deacon’s Fashion Forest Seduction, a nostalgic ’90s-inspired installation billed as “an explosion of technicolour Australiana”; or Parer Studio’s Man at the stunning Cataract Gorge. Stay at The Florance, a carefully restored old Victorian house in the city centre.
If you’re spending time on the coast this month, three top-notch Melbourne eateries now have beachside siblings. MoVida is bringing modern Spanish to a permanent new spot at Lorne, taqueria-and-more Mamasita is popping up at Barwon Heads, and Raph Rashid’s Taco Truck is spending some time in Point Lonsdale.
Andrew McConnell is bringing Supernormal Natsu back for a 10-day pop-up in St Kilda. Natsu means “summer” in Japanese, so you can expect an ultra-seasonal vegetarian menu leaning on foraged and organic ingredients. It’ll kick-off on the 14th with a dinner party hosted by Sydney chef Brent Savage, who heads up vegetarian fine diner Yellow.
Finally, summer in Melbourne wouldn’t be the same without few 40-plus-degree days at Rod Laver Arena. The Australian Open this year has more happening off the court than ever before, including performances by Craig David, Angus & Julia Stone, Jet, Something for Kate and Jebediah. And Beijing Betty is launching, serving refined, ’80s-inspired Cantonese food from the Tokyo Tina and Hanoi Hannah crew. There’ll also be eats from Mamasita, Neil Perry’s Burger Project, Nobu and 400 Gradi.