Melbourne Darling’s Top 5 Picks for the Queen Victoria Wednesday Night Market

The Queen Victoria Night Market is back to excite your Wednesday night plans from now until the end of Summer. But before you race on down and make a bee line for the spiral fries like everyone else, read my wrap up of the top  5 things to do at the Wednesday Night Market this season:

1. Hammer and Tong’s Soft Shell Crab Burger

Last week I reviewed Hammer and Tong and their ever popular contribution to Melbourne’s gourmet burger scene with the Soft Shell Crab Burger. Well firstly, I advise you make the first thing you do when you arrive at the Night Market is to pinch yourself a table early, while you still can. I find the Night Market only gets busier and busier each year and the later the night gets, the increasing number of people flock to the dining areas and begin their hunt for a seat.  So before you go exploring the market stalls, I suggest you find a table with your group first and eat early in the evening.

That being said, if you were looking forward to trying the Soft Shell Crab Burger for yourself, the Wednesday Night Market is a great opportunity to do so. Hammer and Tong’s market stall is especially dedicated to pumping out those delicious burgers all night, so you’re getting the same delicious meal as you would if you were to order it in their restaurant, but for a few dollars cheaper too!

Hammer and Tong Soft Shell Crab Burger at the Night Market

Hammer and Tong Soft Shell Crab Burger at the Night Market

2. Vintage Hub

Among the sea of regular market stalls at the Queen Victoria Night Market – cheap sunglasses, handmade soaps, band t-shirts and jewellery - coconut watches anyone? This year it was refreshing to see the addition of the ‘Vintage Hub‘. Hosted by Vintage Garage, The Vintage Hub is a cluster of stalls selling an assortment of all things vintage from pre-loved and reworked clothing to retro homewares. Check out Grandma-Funk for her one-of-a-kind collection of vintage European leather patch jumpers and Vonruby for a gorgeous Vintage hairdo and makeover.


Vonruby Vintage Hair and Makeup at The Night Market

 3. Live Music

Your perfect summer evenings at the Wednesday Night Market are made complete with festive tunes hosted by Multicultural Arts Victoria. Each week features a selection of the diverse mix of performers. From my experience, some bands are extremely funky and engaging and will invite the crowd to get up and dance. A couple of sangria’s later and you may just be more than eager to get up and join them! You can view the full program of gigs for the 2013-2014 season here.

4. Dessert

After all that walking and talking (and perhaps after the last point, some dancing too?) you would have most likely worked up your second (or third) appetite for the night, and with so many exciting and exotic variations of food on offer, you’d be glad you did! There are so many food stalls you are bound to find something to tickle your fancy, but if you are having trouble deciding, try the Creme Brulee or Lemon tart macaron from Macaron De Paris, the Dutch Pancakes or the French Crepes (just look out for the giant tubs of Nutella)

Macarons from Macaron De Paris at The Night Market

Macarons from Macaron De Paris at The Night Market

5. Sangria!

It just wouldn’t be right if you didn’t put Sangria on your list of things to do at the Night Market! Not only do Running Bull Sangria offer a red and white wine variety, but they now have a couple of stalls set up around the market space, so you can sip on your fruity wine mix whilst browsing the market stalls in delight until…

oh! Whats that? You’ve finished your cup already and you’re already on the other side of the market by now? Oh look! There’s another sangria stall conveniently located two stalls down! And on it goes…

(Or for a non alcoholic sipping treat, try the original Lemonade stands instead!)


Running Bull Sangria at The Night Market

The Queen Victoria WednesdayNight Market

Every Wednesday night from 5pm-10pm

November 6th – February 26th (excluding December 25th & January 1st 2014)

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Ask Melbourne Darling: Bachelorette Party / Hens Night Ideas for Melbourne CBD

Hi Melbourne Darling,

A few friends and I (aged late 20′s early 30′s) want to organise a fun filled hens night for our work friend who is getting married in October. We’d like a fun girl’s night out, but want to keep it classy. We’d like to start in the CBD for dinner and then head out for drinks and dancing (the bride to be likes RnB). Any recommendations will be really appreciated! Also any suggestions of what we can do to make the night a memorable one will be great.

I think there some great options you can choose from in the CBD for a fun (but classy) girl’s night out on the town for your friend’s Hens Night.
Wherever you choose to go for dinner, because there will be a group of you, I strongly suggest you choose a restaurant where you can book a table in advance, as a lot of popular restaurants in the city usually have a no booking policy, so I haven’t suggested many of these, as unless your group is extremely patient, you will not want to spend the majority of your night lining up for dinner!
I’ll  provide suggestions for three places, restaurants, cocktail bars and clubs. I think going to different venues is an exciting change of scenery and hopping from one venue to another becomes a bit of an adventure in itself to make it an exciting night! But don’t worry, I’ve tried to keep the places fairly close to each other so they are as stiletto friendly as possible!
Please note I have provided links to the Urban Spoon website entries for all restaurants and bar locations, as I find you get a more honest judgment of the venues through the reviews and votes on Urban Spoon, as I’ve been to most of the places noted, I haven’t yet written a review on my own blog about them all yet! All Urbanspoon entries also have links to the venue’s official website.
Here are my suggestions:
A wide range of different cuisines, depending on the preferred tastes of your friends, please note that calling at least a week before hand to secure a booking is ALWAYS advised…
(Popular Asian eatery)
(Thai food, similar to Chin Chin, also do great cocktails)
(Mexican food, festive atmosphere, similar to Mamasita but take bookings)
(Asian fusion cuisine, again, similar to Chin Chin, delicious cocktails!)
Cheaper options:
(great Japanese sushi train venue, small intimate space, you may be seated on a bar setting ie. not facing eachother as a group, so if you don’t mind that its a great, fun place with delicious food!)
(Authentic modern Italian and pizza restaurant)
Gingerboy. Image Via.

Gingerboy. Image Via.

Cocktail Bars:
I like to suggest girly cocktail bars for Hen’s nights, because a girly night out is what Hen’s Nights should be all about!
All gorgeous venues, and full of yummy cocktails! The Emerald Peacock is notorious for being strict on entry so it’s always good to have a back up option, just in case!

Madame Brussels. Image Via.

Younger crowd (18-28)
Modern Rnb and Hip Hop Music
Live Jazz / Soul band playing before 11pm
Guestlist recommended ($10 entry charge before 10pm, $15 after 10pm)
Contact Nathan on 0431 237 553 for all your guestlist needs or group packages at Club YoYo.
Older crowd (25-35)
Mix of dance music
Guestlist recommended
Cover charge (generally $15)
Older crowd (25-35)
Very pretty and elegant venue (used to be a bank!)
RnB music and Top 40
Guestlist recommended
Cover charge ($15-$20)

Silk Road. Image Via.

That being said, I’ve some of these options together a couple of suggested itineraries to help you plan out your night:
Restaurant: Sakura Kaiten Sushi or Gingerboy
Cocktail Bar: Lily Blacks or Madame Brussels
Club: Spice Market



Restaurant: +39 Pizzeria , Red Spice Road, Cookie or Touche Hombre


Cocktail Bar: The Emerald Peacock or Seamstress


Club: Key Club


Here is a link to a Google maps I created to help you see how close each place is to one another and help you plan your night.
Place the below link in your browser to access it:
In addition to that,  I think a good combination of delicious food, exotic, girly cocktails and lots of dancing will be a perfect Bachelorette Party / Hens Night for the modern cosmopolitan woman! There are always little things you can do as a group if you want to make the night a little more fun. For example, your group could all wear a matching accessory ie. a playful beaded necklace or bracelet. It doesn’t even have to be a typical flashy, borderline tawdry piece, it could all just be the same cute but inexpensive cocktail ring or wearing the same flower in your hair or flower crowns (visit Colette, or Lovisa for some cheap and chic pieces) for a nice alternative to a hot pink flashing sashes or tiaras. Alternatively, if you did want to incorporate small games into the night, it could be as simple as getting the bride-to-be and or/ guests to try an exotic food item or making the bride-to-be hold the cocktail menu and closing her eyes, she must order and drink the first cocktail her finger lands on!
Hope these suggestions assist and inspire you in planning your fun and memorable night!
Melbourne Darling xo

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Melbourne Darling’s Weekend Picks 4th – 6th October

I cannot believe it is October already! Not to scare you but there is 11 weeks until Christmas, 13 weeks until we are officially in 2014, not to mention that we are already one month into Spring! So if you thought September was a busy month, get ready darlings, because October is going to be jam-packed with fun!


Girl’s Night In

October is officially National Breast Cancer Awareness month, and what better way to show your support then to host your very own ‘Girls Night In’ this October!

Register your event via the Cancer Council Pink website and get your girlfriends together for a fun night while raising money for this worthy cause and don’t forget to Think Pink!

Register to host your own Girls Night In online.

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Garage Sale Trail

Now that we are in the middle of Spring, there is no better time to spring clean your homes and wardrobes, and with the Garage Sale Trail you may even find yourself making some extra cash along the way.

The Garage Sale Trail is a national event that organises individuals to hold Garage Sales on the same day around Australia, and this year, the day will be Saturday October 26th. With three weeks away, why not register yourself to host a garage sale, it could be the motivation you need to finally get around to de-cluttering your home!

Register to host your own Garage Sale for Saturday October 26th online.


Lavazza Italian Film Festival

Set your sights on Italy this October, even if it is only for the duration of one of the diverse range of movies the Lavazza Italian Film Festival is presenting this month. It certainly is one event that will make you fall in love with all things Italian and from the collection of films on offer this year, there looks to be something for everyone. There are a selection of dramas or for something a little different go for The Worst Week of My Life for some laughs, The Lithium Conspiracy for a captivating thriller,  The Human Cargo for an eye opening documentary. Alternatively if you can’t make up your mind or are up for any genre, it’s hard to go wrong with their opening night pick The Great Beauty which featured at Cannes.

The Lavazza Italian Film Festival runs from October 2nd to October 27th at the following participating cinemas in Melbourne:

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Level 2, Como Centre, Cnr of Toorak Road
& Chapel Street, South Yarra
(03) 9827 7533 (Tram 8, Stop 31)

231 Whitehorse Road, Balwyn
(03) 9817 1277 (Tram 109, Stop 46)
294 Bay Street, Brighton
(03) 9596 3590

89 High Street, Northcote
(03) 9482 2001 (Tram 86 & 112, Stop 27)
Umbertos Bar
Pizza Miene Liebe

Lower Ground Floor, Collins Place,
45 Collins Street, Melbourne
(03) 9650 2100 (Tram 109 & 112, Stop 8)
The European
+39 Pizzeria

To enhance you’re Italian experience with an Italian dinner before your movie session, if you are attending a movie session at Palace Westgarth, I can recommend Umberto Espresso Bar in High Street Thornbury for an authentic Italian dinner or Pizza Miene Liebe for fantastic pizza close by. Alternatively if you are wandering into the city to Kino Cinema, you can’t go past Pellegrini’s for a comforting Italian dish, The European for something a little more fancy and a romantic atmosphere or +39 Pizzeria for tasty pizza.

For more information, head to the official website.



This event is for all the Hip Hop Honeys out there…

I specifically remember being a young girl, flicking through an older cousin’s old high school yearbook and being fascinated by the page of senior year students and their ‘life motto’ written underneath each of their photos. While most of these quotes were inspirational sayings of famous figures or motivational words of wisdom, the one that stuck with me that I still remember to this day was one girl’s life motto that simply read ‘Just get Jiggy with It’. Maybe it was because I didn’t understand what on Earth it meant but the repercussion of this memory is that I get a mental image of the pensive look on that girl’s yearbook photo to this day, every time I hear that phrase …

Honestly, even with a little help from Urban Dictionary, I’m still a little confused by what exactly it means to ‘get jiggy with it’… but what I can tell you is that Sugar Nightclub make it very clear they know how to get down like Will Smith and ‘get Jiggy on Fridays’ with their new Hip Hop & RnB night.

Jiggy’ on Friday nights celebrates its opening night tonight, Friday 4thJonn Hart October. The new regular Friday event guarantees to be playing a mix of new and old school RNB and Hip Hop favourites every week from 9pm. Attendees of the launch party tonight are also promised a performance by rapper Jonn Hart of Who Booty’. If you and your guurls love a bit of booty popping than this looks like a fun new place to twerk dance the night away.


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Jiggy Fridays at Sugar Nightclub

8 Jackson Street

Toorak, Victoria, Australia 3142

Guestlist / Function Bookings email

$20/$25 cover charge

Free Parking available on Toorak Rd & Jackson St


Finders Keepers Market

With the promise of warmer weather, you can expect to see the start of some fun night markets popping up across Melbourne from now through summer. The Finder’s Keepers Market is a wonderful design and art market, not only selling local designer goods and quirky pieces, the Finder’s Keepers Market ensures an enjoyable outing with DJ sets, great food, alcohol and of course, good coffee. I personally want to check out the Frankie Vintage Emporium as well as a range of other exciting stalls and unique pieces on offer from the likes of Sophie.B and The Lost Words


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October 4th 6pm – 10pm

October 5th 10am – 5pm

The Royal Exhibition Building
9 Nicholson Street, Carlton

Entry Fee: $2 entry fee, children under 12 enter free.

For more information, refer to their website or event page on Facebook.


Kinki Gerlinki Garage Sale

If you are like me, you love Kinki Gerlinki but may find that your wallet sometimes finds it difficult to keep up with your frequent moments of  lusting over yet another colourful patterned print dress or pom pom and petal embellished accessory. The good news is that the Kinki Gerlinki Garage Sales are unmissable events for lovers of all things Kinki… Gerlinki that is! A great opportunity to revisit the items of your affection or maybe even discover some new lust-worthy pieces at bargain prices.

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October 5th and 6th

9am – 5pm

209 Sydney Rd
Brunswick Vic 3056

You can find more information on their Facebook event page.




Hip Hop High Tea

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You heard right. Grab your shorty and head on down to sip T like a G!

Celebrating all things East Side, this Hip Hop High Tea follows on from their sell-out first event, so get your bookings in quick! Offering ‘dope eats, teas and beats’ dine on a  selection of Japanese tapas while listening to some great Hip Hop and Soul tunes with an Eastside influence as well as live Hip Hop performances. Have a listen to their soundcloudteatape’ to get that vibe ready.

Sat Oct 5, 4–6pm

Horse Bazaar,

397 Little Lonsdale Street,

Melbourne, Victoria 3000

Bookings $30 plus booking fee.

Buy your tickets online here.

For enquiries or advising of any dietary requirements, contact:

For more information, head to their Facebook event page or website:

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