Melbourne’s Best BYO Restaurants for Your Next Group Dinner Date
For a boozy dinner that won't break the bank, these are our favourite BYO restaurants in Melbourne.
Whether your budget is a little (make that ‘a lot’) tighter than you’d like, or you’ve been saving that special bottle of something for just the right occasion – there’s nothing like a top-shelf BYO dining experience. But sometimes it can be a little tricky to know where you’re allowed to turn up vino in hand. Here at Sitchu, we’ve done the legwork for you. So sit back, and raise a glass to Melbourne’s best BYO restaurants.
A favourite of penny-strapped students and weekend pre-gamers looking to line their stomachs, Shanghai Village is a local treasure. While the dumplings draw the crowds (fifteen will set you back a tenner), you’ll find page after page of hearty Shanghai-style plates to satisfy every mood. Charming chaotic with an enviable BYO policy to match, Shanghai's no-fuss brand of hospitality is everything we love about Chinatown.
112 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne
Melburnians might love dumplings, but they really love pho. Just don’t make them choose their favourite. I Love Pho, situated smack bang in the middle of buzzing Victoria Street, is one of the originals, and the best – serving up steaming bowlfuls of winter warmers, with a no frills, all-flavour mentality. And nothing elevates a low-key meal quite like sharing a pre-purchased bottle sparkling amongst friends.
264 Victoria Street, Richmond
When it comes to cheap, cheerful and traditional Malaysian eats, Mamak is the place to go. For the ultimate in comfort food, their mouthwatering satay and crispy roti are the only craving cures. The thing that makes this street food fave even better is that you can pair your fave meal with your fave drop, no corkage.
366 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne
Serving up authentic, home-style Italian cuisine, Emilia brings to life the flavour, atmosphere and vibe of regional Italy. On any given night, expect a lively dining hall and an intoxicating scent lingering from the kitchen. To sweeten the deal, from Monday-Wednesday, from groups under 8 people, you can BYO your wine of choice to pair with their rustic fare. (Disclaimer: corkage $15 per bottle).
360 Little Collins Street, Melbourne
This gastropub-slash-wine store is Fitzroy North's pride and joy. The Recreation is the local watering hole that serves hearty meals with a refined French twist – think ham and gruyere croquettes and dry-aged duck breast. Better still, you can either sip your way through their International wine menu or BYO for $20. If you forget to pick up a bottle, don't worry, you can stop in at the onsite bottle shop and purchase one there.
162-170 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Melbourne is a town that loves its dumplings. And HuTong, named for the alleyways that wind through China’s bustling cities, is unanimously agreed to be one of the best. Luckily, it also happens to be BYO. So prep that bottle of white, rally your crew and prepare to gorge on xiao long bao and mountains of other authentic street food until your heart's content.
14-16 Market Lane, Melbourne
Nestled in leafy Fitzroy North, the colourful Horn Please has become a local institution, known for its delicious menu of regional Indian dishes and inventive specials such as Papdi Chaat – described as ‘the motherland's version of nachos and salsa’. The perfect occasion to share a special drop with friends, this delightful eatery is a real crowd pleaser.
167 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North
Delicious Greek delicacies served with a side of FUN. They don't get more festive than Jim's. Food is simple yet spectacular, with hearty traditional classics including pan-fried Saganaki, homemade Greek dips, and a veritable smorgasbord of chargrilled meats and seafood. Raucous crowds and joyful tunes bring the party vibes, so you can truly make a night of it. And the best bit? You can also bring along your own tipple – so grab a bottle or two and join the party.
32 Johnston Street, Collingwood
A true Melbourne icon, Abla’s has been dishing up traditional Lebanese cuisine for over thirty years. This homely restaurant offers a friendly serving of hospitality alongside its moreish fare, with everything from hummus to tabouleh, falafel and kibbee on the table to keep the diehard fans coming back for more. Pair your fattoush with a bottle of your favourite wine, and you’re in for a winning evening.
109 Elgin Street, Carlton
Nestled just off bustling Victoria Street and its mecca of Asian eateries, much-loved Jinda Thai has garnered a host of devotees who can’t get enough of its celebrated Thai cuisine –think fragrant curries and local classics like Tom Yum and Pad Thai. As well as sipping on chilled Thai beers, you’re welcome to bring along a bottle of your favourite drop – all the better when paired with a spicy jungle curry.
1-7 Fergus Street, Abbotsford
One of Melbourne’s hippest restaurants, in one of Melbourne's hippest suburbs – Pizza Meine Leibe serves up some of the city’s tastiest pizzas fresh from the stone oven. Crispy, thin bases are complemented by fresh produce (from classics like prosciutto to spicier additions such as jalapenos) and cheerful 60s décor. All that’s left to add is a glass of your favourite red – straight from the home cellar.
231 High Street, Northcote
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