El Atino, Latino Food, at 366 Bridge Road Richmond. Picture: Eugene Hyland
As the city gears up for the blockbuster match between Brazil and Argentina at Melbourne Cricket Ground on June 9, Neymar vs Messi are not the only South American entertainment available in Melbourne, the city’s Latin-inspired dining options provide muchos deliciousness for visitors and locals alike.
In Meyer’s Place, one of the city’s many narrow laneways, San Telmo recreates the feeling of the barrio diner with it’s warm wood panelling, soft lighting and segregated areas for groups. Diners can choose to take a stool at the bar and have a glass of malbec and an empanada (Argentinian fried pastry) or choose from the extensive menu of steaks and meat dishes with premium beef sourced from Gippsland. San Telmo’s location at the top end of town close to the Melbourne Cricket Ground and Melbourne Park make it a perfect for pre-match dining option. 14 Meyers Place, Melbourne, +61 3 9650 5525.
El Atino & Co.
Serious about their Latin American routes and “presenting a new way of sharing honest latin food”, Chef Martin Zozaya and his team of latin trained chefs offer a menu of dishes that include the crowd-pleasing huevos rancheros, jalapenos rellenos, and guacamole as well as some more unconventional dishes from all over Latin Amercia. Special degustation events, group options and cooking classes showcase the team’s creativity. 366 Bridge Road, Richmond, +61 3 8529 4222.
Tucked away in one of the city’s coolest street art adorned laneways with Tonka and Lee Ho Fook as neighbours, Pastuso is Melbourne’s flagship Peruvian restaurant – with a nod to its neighbouring South American countries ‘from the coast through the Andes to the jungle’. Diners can take a seat at the ceviche bar and sip on pisco sours, or grab a table in the warm, wood paneled restaurant and choose dishes from the Street Food, Fire or Argentine Beef Cut menus. Chef Alejandro Saravia creates traditional Peruvian fare using local produce such as Gippsland beef as well as produce local to Peru, as in the alpaca croquette. 9 AC/DC Ln, Melbourne VIC 3000, +61 3 9662 4556.
A typical Brazilian restaurant, B’Churrasco Brazilian Dining focuses on big serves and big flavours and diners are advised to bring their appetite. With the barbecue-style cooking techniques of Brazil served up in a contemporary setting, guests will experience the excitement and theatre of food cooked over an open fire as freshly barbecued sword-length skewers are carved straight onto the plate. No need for menus, guests simply take their seat and the staff do the rest. Upstairs at 61 A’ Beckett Street, Melbourne, +61 3 8060 4770.
A stalwart of the Smith Street trip offering the traditional Brazilian BBQ Churrasscaria dinner on Friday and Saturday nights, including options for vegetarians and other specialist diets. However it’s not just the food that draws punters to Copacabana International, the fun is all in the music and dancing. Every Tuesday night Salsa classes, every Thursday night bar and dance classes and every weekend dancing and live floorshow performances. Made all the more fun by the washing down of the traditional Brazilian cocktail, Caipirinha, made from sugar cane spirit, crushed limes and ice. 139 Smith street, Fitzroy, 3065, +61 3 9417 7099.