Republic of Moreland

AC Nelson POLL on pubs and cafés! VOTE NOW!

new moon 1 This is my vote. Its service is non-existent, it has no menu, and it hasn’t opened for umpteen years. But the typography, the distressed paintwork, the name, the Venetian blinds, the whiff of Memphis diner, the vestiges of Asian migrant settlement, and (if you press your nose to the window) the stencilled walls and faux stone floor — it’s perfect.

new moon 2

You may have other ideas of Moreland’s best café, bar or pub, and your nominations and reasons for them are urged invited.*

*No, your name and email won’t be sold to spammers, and your nomination will not be used for market survey purposes, but for this site’s links and info bank.


  1. Shouldn’t that read “Memphis dinner”?

    Comment by Bob Bygone — December 24, 2006 @ 10:44 pm | Reply

  2. Is that a joke?

    I nominate the place in victoria st, just west of sydney rd, with the red awning. Mr C and I always say, “let’s go to that place”. I don’t know what the name is. Help, anyone?

    Comment by Chloe — December 24, 2006 @ 11:10 pm | Reply

  3. I think, Chloe, you mean Ray’s.

    Comment by Girl on The Avenue — December 25, 2006 @ 10:13 pm | Reply

  4. It seems that if we’re talking cafes then we need to nominate categories. Clearly, Girl’s “New Moon” that is in need of a Heritage Listing cannot be compared to Ray’s with its nothing facade yet chic low-rent interior.
    My OWN category of cafe is “good, cheap takeaways” which are neither trendy nor tumbled-down, and I nominate three on Sydney Road between Hope St. and Albion.
    The first is Tabet’s Bakery at 607 (next door to the best butcher shop in the Southern Hemisphere – Istanbul – but that’s another story). Tabet’s makes great Lebanese cheese ‘n spinach pies and oregano pizzas on which you can order extra salad and all around $2.50.
    Further up towards Albion on the same left-hand side there’s the famous A1 Bakery (next to the excellent Hot Price Variety Store – but that’s another story). A1 has similar Lebanese pies (only different) and is also a great place for any Middle Eastern foods, packaged and fresh.
    And between these two bakeries, next door to the newsagent, is the Sahara Cafe. For $5.50 you can get one of the best falafel wraps around! So if you’re anything like me and occasionally prefer something a little more interesting than what your own fridge offers, try any of these three five-star foodstops.
    PS All of them are kind of opposite the IGA Supermarket (which cannot be compared to the fabulous Mediterranean Foodstore – but that’s another story).

    Comment by Leonardo — December 30, 2006 @ 12:19 pm | Reply

  5. My vote goes to Café Lamour [sic], Lygon Street, East Brunswick. The staff are ace blokes, the ciabatti are tops, and there’s absolutely no bullshit. The coffee is the best you’ll find, too. Plus it’s open all hours (although I’ve never been able to brave it late on a Saturday night when three sheets… much better fun to stumble down to Café Romantica, play Billy Idol on the jukebox, drink beer and eat pizza).

    But, while the sun’s above the yardarm, Lamour rules!

    Comment by Bane of Malakas — January 3, 2007 @ 8:36 pm | Reply

  6. Leonardo, I just put in New Moon to kick off the conversation, and be neutral, and because I love it and wish it were mine. I have my own favourite cafés, and I’m ashamed to say they’re much more yuppie than your or Bane’s nominations, which are fabulous.

    My vote goes to A Minor Place on Albion Street. Service can be crap on the weekends, but during weekdays it’s lovely. The boys who own it are lovely, too, and the food is just what you feel like (though I wouldn’t mind a fresh fruit salad in summer). In winter it’s just the cosy place to go with your laptop to hook into the café’s wireless and plough into a soupy thing.

    Must say I’m impressed with Sarah’s new place on Lygon Street Brunswick: the little green place tucked away near the park. (You know Sarah, erstwhile Small Block proprietor?) Can’t remember the name, though Flamingo comes to mind (it’s not Flamingo.) The service, as ever, is wonderful, the food is great, and good prices.

    Comment by Girl on The Avenue — January 4, 2007 @ 9:46 am | Reply

  7. A Minor Place (named after the Bonnie Prince Billy song of the same name) is a great little cafe, excellent breakfasts, nice atmosphere. Even good music. They were playing one of my fav bands there the other week when we went for brekky. Try the white beans, they’re delish.

    Apparently this mob have set up a new cafe on Lygon too, but I also forget the name, unless this is the place that you (Girl) are talking about. Nice little place with a dartboard out the back, away from the city from Small Block.

    Fav pub is still The Retreat, but I’ve been trying to get a mob down to The Lomond on Nicholson & Blyth. I’ve heard that since RRR moved in across the street that that place has really picked up.

    Anyone been there?

    Comment by Marty — January 10, 2007 @ 12:00 pm | Reply

  8. I don’t think we’re talking about the same place, Marty. Sarah’s new place is on the West side of Lygon St, between Blyth St and Glenlyon Rd. It’s indented away from the footpath: and has outside walls painted a warm green. Has very nice industrial wooden assembly chairs, and quite minimalist in design. She aint got no dartboards, as far as I can tell.

    I don’t know Johnno’s and Hutain’s (sp?) new place. But it’s funny, I was told once that Sarah, these boys and Ray’s were considered the Bermuda Triangle of cafés in Brunswick. Forget why.

    Comment by Girl on The Avenue — January 10, 2007 @ 11:05 pm | Reply

  9. Oh yeah I know the one. I haven’t checked it out yet, but it looks cool.

    This other place only opened very recently, on the east side but down towards the city more.

    Comment by Marty — January 11, 2007 @ 8:54 am | Reply

  10. I’ve been to The Lomond, Marty, probably some months ago now. I too had heard it was better since RRR moved in across the road, but I didn’t see any evidence of that in the public bar. It was still all bright fluoro lighting, loud TV and subbies in stubbies tucking into meat and 3 veg. You know the drill.

    Stayed for one quick pot and then split for The Railway on Nicholson, North Fitzroy. Best beer garden around, and, although not actually in Moreland, you can certainly lob an ice cube at it without too much hassle.

    Comment by Bane of Malakas — January 11, 2007 @ 11:37 am | Reply

  11. Best pub: Definatly the Brunswick Hotel, cnr Sydney rd & weston st
    Best Cafe: Thats a difficult one. We need some criterea, cos some have great food yet you need to wait. some have great coffee yet lousy menu. One of the best would have to be Sara’s new venture “El Mirage” mentioned earlier. Great service, coffee and excellent food. Yet myself personally prefer somthing a little more intimate. Check out 3a and tell me what you think. Thats 3a Edward st Brunny.

    Comment by Max Franc — January 27, 2007 @ 5:23 pm | Reply

  12. Oh, is that the one just a few shops up from Sydney Rd? Very nice choice. Haven’t been there for about 3 years (it’s only about that old, isn’t it?) Used to live in Edward St and was the nicest cafe around at the time.

    Comment by Girl on The Avenue — January 28, 2007 @ 9:29 pm | Reply

  13. Best Pub: The Retreat

    Best Cafe: Moka Gigi’s on Sydney Rd just north of the Cornish Arms. Not everyone’s cup of tea I imagine but its got good coffee, friendly service and a nice sense of community

    Comment by Chris Anderson — February 8, 2007 @ 3:01 pm | Reply

  14. Yes! I’ve been there and it’s lovely.

    Comment by Girl on The Avenue — February 8, 2007 @ 7:21 pm | Reply

  15. I think the Edinburgh Castle is fast overtaking The Retreat as the better pub on Sydney Road. Excellent Old Skool beer garden, like the Standard or others of auld. Some of the crusty old clientele still linger in corners, but most punters are young locals and the whole place has a much better vibe since changing hands. Food’s pretty good, too.

    It’s creeping north, citizens!

    Comment by Bane of Malakas — December 7, 2007 @ 9:54 am | Reply

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    Comment by sandrar — September 11, 2009 @ 8:21 am | Reply

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