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January 21, 2015

6 Ways to a Successful Restaurant Business

The popular notion is that if you have good food to offer, success in the restaurant business is yours for the taking. This is not always the case. The food is only the product and it has been shown time and again that products alone, no matter its quality or desirability, do not always guarantee business success. As in other types of enterprise, the restaurant business requires an amalgam of factors to be able to hit the big time.  

Here are 6 ways to make a success of that restaurant business you have long planned to embark upon:

Best Restaurants Melbourne

#1 Never start without the big three. The big three are a great chef, a great location, and a great concept. These all work together. Your location should fit your concept. Your chef or “talent” must fit this concept otherwise your restaurant’s cash register will not be ringing merrily. It’s foolhardy to say location doesn’t matter because you have a destination restaurant. Location is everything. So do some research on a target area and understand what local patrons are missing and ask yourself if you can fill that void successfully. The restaurant should be in a busy location with a lot of parking.

#2 Always overestimate your capital needs. Plan on capital expense that would last six to nine months before you can break even. Many start-up restaurants see a major downswing in business after the opening’s initial excitement. That’s when capital is critical. You have to wait to see if the restaurant would really catch on. A lot of restaurant owners start out with cash in reserve and start blowing it because they think the honeymoon phase will last forever. That’s why most restaurants go out of business. So never let initial success go to your head. Success is only determined years later.

#3 Don’t get cheap with guests. The most important money you will spend is money that adds value to the guest. Don’t try to go cheap on certain things like equipment, valets, and even desserts. This is short sighted because everything that touches a guest is important. Bear in mind that guests love it when a dish comes out and the server says, “The chef wanted you to try this.” This creates a real connection and makes the experience more personal. Hence, make sure you spend as much money as possible on the guest experience. Spend money on the people already in your restaurant because that’s the best way to generate positive word of mouth.

#4 Focus on organization and systems of operation. Failing to put systems in place is one of the biggest mistakes an independent restaurant owner makes. Many restaurant owners don’t want to come across as a corporate entity on the belief that this would make their diner impersonal. This idea is misplaced. Developing a system will make your restaurant build guest demand, hold on to key people, and make money. Otherwise it would have been impossible to open two locations. Organization gives you the freedom to be creative.

#5 Be ready to evolve. Many businesses are started by a craftsperson with an idea for a product. Rarely does that idea become anything unless that person partners with someone with a complementary ability, like, “You carve wooden bananas and I can sell them for you”. That’s when an idea becomes a business. So always look for people who are smarter than you. As a restaurant owner, the smartest thing you can do is partner with people who know things you don’t—and then give them a reason to care.

#6 Acquire experience in all areas of the restaurant business. Again, this is so you can understand and appreciate the responsibilities of your staff, and also so you can motivate and guide others effectively. Dish washing, waiting tables, and bar-tending are some of the positions you should undertake. You need to know how to perform every position in your restaurant so you can both train new staff members if necessary and know when a staff member is misinforming you.


SEE ALSO: 10 Best Restaurants Worth Visiting in Essendon North, Melbourne

January 6, 2015

Seafood Restaurants in Melbourne

Seafood Restaurants Melbourne
(Beer Battered Fish and Chips - Salad, chunky chips, tartare sauce and lemon)
The reason is that the state is blessed with the rich fishing grounds of Lucky Brighton, which in turn boasts of Fish Tank, the leading seafood restaurant in Melbourne. Fish Tank is an ever popular seafood restaurant that prides itself as a healthy dining place. It’s a fishmonger doubling as a smart seafood cafe where you can browse and buy glistening, market fresh local seafood to cook at home; pick up fish and chips to go, or enjoy a sit-down meal with a refreshing glass of local wine. 

Along with black trevally, blue grenadier or King George whiting cooked to your liking (with or without hand cut chips), menu options could include salt and pepper calamari, baked salmon with chilli sauce, or for the less seafood inclined, tasty burgers, souvlaki and dim sims. Seafood grill is your first option, which is half crayfish mornay, prawn and fish skewers, half shell scallops, salt and pepper calamari, salad and chips

Then there’s Anchorage Restaurant whose menu highlights a selection of fresh seafood, showcased in dishes like the seafood platter for one and sumptuous mains such as squid ink risotto with buttered poached prawns, scallop and diamond clams with basil and chilli. Those looking to deviate will find solace in alternatives like the Gippsland free range Black Angus eye fillet steak.

Reeling you in for a seafood feast in Melbourne’s southern suburbs is Tommy Ruff Fish Bar, a recent addition to the Mordialloc dining scene. Like its founding father in Elsternwick, this breezy casual eatery draws the crowds in with its funky seaside boathouse fit out (think octopus murals and fishing rod lighting) and menu of fresh seafood sensations. Take your pick from options like the marinated scallop skewer served with either chips and salad or rice and salad, or perhaps opt for the tacklebox for two, featuring house fish, king prawns, calamari rings, potato cakes and chips. 


There are more of the Melbourne restaurants notable for their excellent seafood offerings as featured in the Australian Good Food & Travel Guide: Melbourne Seafood Restaurants... 

(Order by: Popularity)

Matteo's Restaurant   Fitzroy North, - Modern, Japanese, Seafood 
Rockpool Bar and Grill   Southbank, -  Modern, Seafood, Steakhouse 8 Whiteman 

Gingerboy  CBD  - Asian, Seafood, Tapas 29 Crossley St 

France-Soir  South Yarra/Toorak, - French, Seafood, Steakhouse 11 Toorak Rd.

Claypots Seafood & Wine  St Kilda, - Seafood 213 Barkly St 

Chef Lagenda Flemington, - Malaysian, Seafood, Chinese 16 Pin Oak Crescent 

Jim's Greek Tavern  Collingwood, - Seafood, Greek, Mediterranean 32 Johnston St.

Railway Club Hotel Port  Port Melbourne, - Steakhouse, Seafood, Gastropub 107 Raglan St.

Richmond Oysters   Richmond, - Seafood, Steakhouse, Fish and Chips 443 Church St 

Ebi Fine Food   Footscray, - Japanese, Fish and Chips, Seafood 18A Essex St.

Matteo's Restaurant   Fitzroy North, - Modern, Japanese, Seafood 533 Brunswick St.

Sette Bello  Glen Waverley, - Italian, Breakfast, Seafood 540 Springvale Rd.

Hunky Dory Fish and Burger  Port Melbourne, - Seafood, Fish and Chips, Burgers Shop 3/181 Bay St.

Pacific Seafood BBQ House  South Yarra/Toorak, - Barbecue, Chinese, Seafood 210 Toorak Rd.

Chez Olivier - Le Bistro  Prahran, - French, Wine Bar, Seafood 121 Greville St.

Dalmatino  Port Melbourne, - European, Seafood, Mediterranean 280 Bay St.

December 25, 2014

Fine Dining at Lunch Time


Fine dining is a style of eating that usually takes place in expensive restaurants where good food is served to discriminating people.  But it is not always about eating out for dinner as is the common impression. Fine dining restaurants are also a beehive of activities at midday, pandering to the lunchtime crowd of fastidious diners with delightful and dedicated meal courses.  This is true in Melbourne which abounds in restaurants that serve fine diners with an array of fine lunchtime menu. 

The décor of these restaurants feature higher-quality materials with an eye towards the "atmosphere" desired by the restaurateur. The wait staff is usually highly trained and often wears more formal attire.  Fine Dining in Melbourne are almost always small businesses and are generally either single-location operations or have just a few locations. Food portions are visually appealing. Fine dining restaurants have certain rules of dining which visitors are generally expected to follow, often including a dress code.

Typical of the Melbourne restaurants that provide fine dining for lunch are Allegro, Alluvial, Alpino, Amiconi, Bacash, Becco and Bergerac.  They are spread in such places as Collins street, Domain Road in South Yarra, Crossley street and King street and serve lunch food with all sorts of international flavors. 

Here are some of the best-selling foods in Brickmakers Arms Fine Dining in Melbourne lunch menu:

Grilled Chicken Salad    Avocardo, Meredith goats curd, tomato, leaves

Pork Belly Sliders    Aioli, relish, leaves

Spaghetti Amatriciana    Bacon, olives, fresh tomato hint of chilli

Chargrilled Asparagus & Goulburn Smoked Trout Salad  Soft boiled egg, capers, buttermilk & herb dressing

Beer Battered Fish and Chips   Salad, chunky chips, tartare sauce & lemon

Scotch Fillet 300g Riverine Grain Fed, British Breed, NSW

Gnocchi with Slow Cooked Beef Cheek Ragu  Shaved parmesan

Brickmakers Arms Tasting Board  A selection of our favourite entree items, perfect for sharing

Salad of Marinated Buffalo Mozzzarella  Tomatoes, oregano, basil, fennel seed, fried sour dough and extra virgin olive oil

Chicken Schnitzel   Herb & parmesan crumbed

Tempura Zucchini Flowers Herb ricotta, chili jam

Fillet of Cone Bay Barramundi   Salad of MT Zero grains, pistachios, sultanas and broccolini, saffron vinaigrette
Chermoula Spiced King Prawns  Aioli, lemon

December 10, 2014

A Fine Wine Bar in Melbourne

Welcome to the Brickmakers Arms, home of the cocktail elite and discriminating wine connoisseurs. You won’t find drinks better shaken or stirred in Melbourne than at this fine wine bar where bartending has been elevated to an art form, ice is hewn from giant blocks, hair is slick, and the four-ingredient cocktail is king. But the piece de resistance really is its vast collection of fine and rare wines obtained from all four corners of the earth.


At Brickmakers Arms, you get the opportunity to taste some the world’s finest wines. The wine cellar is a stunning display of premium wines that seats up to 20 guests at a time.  Whether you come solely for cocktails, fine dining or both, the wine bar is the place to be. 


Here is a list of the wine collection in this wine bar in Melbourne, with a description of the characteristics and origin of each wine selection:

Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough, NZ. Cloudy Bay has produced a Sauvignon Blanc of vibrant intensity. The Characteristically uplifting aromas of ripe lime and grapefruit, nectarine, papaya, mango and floral notes.

Mitchell Watervale Riesling, Clare Valley, SA. Intense aromatic Riesling fruit flavours are the hallmarks of this wine.

Cantina Zaccagnini, il Bianco, Italy. Pale straw yellow with green highlights, its bouquet is intense and persistent following through to ripe apples, peach and a hint of almond biscuit on the palate.

Pink Claw Grenache Rose, Heathcote, VIC.  It's a crisp, semi dry style with a vibrant, red berry character. The Pink Claw is a variation of the Red Claw to help awareness of breast cancer. A portion of the profits from every bottle of Pink Claw goes towards supporting women affected by breast cancer

Te Mata Cabernet Merlot, Hawkes Bay, NZ. Te Malta make some sublime Bordeaux style red wine and wonderful floral aromas with intense blackberry, currant and dark plum flavours

Poliziano Chianti DOCG, Tuscany, Italy. A fresh, fruity wine with a wonderful vinosity and suppleness, making it ideal for an early drink. It's and ideal to accompany tasting board, pasta dishes, risotto or duck

Louis Roederer Cristal Champagne. Louis Roederer Cristal Champagne is the epitome of class and elegance from the house of Roederer. A super limited and hard to find top echelon Champagne, Cristal is a 55% Pinot Noir and 45% Chardonnay blend that was harvested in near perfect conditions. The resulting wine is a blend of vineyards from the finest vineyards of Montagne de Reims, the Vallée de la Marne and the Côte des Blancs

2004 Vintage Dom Perignon Champagne.  Dom Pérignon is the most famous Champagne in the world, and for good reason. The bouquet sparkles with delicate fresh violets in a setting of white peaches. The soft delicate flavours continue while the senses are tickled by the most delicate of fine bubbles. Though this is such a fine delicate wine, the complexity is astounding, along with its length.

Te Mata Elston. Elston ’12 has a brilliant, pale lemon colour, with inviting aromas of golden grapefruit, toasted brioche, brazil nuts and popcorn. The palate shows immediate characters of ripe nectarine and nougat, together with both the sweetness and acidity of fresh pineapple that contribute to its long, fine finish.

1999 Giaconda, Chardonnay. A perfect growing season and vintage has provided a wine of significant depth. The 1999 Chardonnay continues the theme established by the 1996, and in our opinion, surpasses it both in terms of intensity and complexity. In a glass, the wine looks rich and enticing. The vibrant glow of white gold and green suggests richness. Hazelnuts, oatmeal, fig and white peach meld with the oak and "dirt" to provide an intoxicating aroma. Creamy and intense with lingering spicy oak, the core flavours of white peach and oatmeal build and build on the palate. As is the custom, the oak character is perceptible at this stage, but the sheer explosive intensity of the wine will in time ensure complete harmony.

Torbreck ‘The Factor' Shiraz. A homage to the great old Shiraz vines of the Barossa Valley and the growers who painstakingly tend and nurture them each year. The Factor displays the concentration & fruit purity that only the most meticulous farming can achieve. Delicate scents of wild blackberries, pipe smoke and pepper are supported by a dark core of espresso roast, black currants and coal.

Te Mata Coleraine, Cabernet Merlot. A deep crimson colour with intense aromas of blackberry syrup, espresso, marzipan, and dried roses. The palate has a concentrated core of perfectly ripe blackcurrants, with layers of damson plums and chocolate leading to long, powerful, tannins and refreshing acidity and closed with a natural cork !

Torbreck 'Run Rig' Shiraz. RunRig, although wonderfully aromatic, is a wine that exhibits so much power and latent richness that it could easily be mistaken for the hugely concentrated wines sourced from the sun drenched hill of Hermitage (the historic home of Syrah and some of the worlds most powerful and longest living wines

2005 Penfold Grange Hermitage. 2005 may not be the most profound Grange, nor will it be the most long-lived, but, oh my goodness, is there some complexity tucked into its crevasses! It is not the blockbuster of 2002 and doesn’t have the stamina and hidden secrets of 2004 (which took hours to reveal itself) but there is no question that this is a great vintage for Grange, as exuberant and expressive as any young Grange I have seen. In no way precocious or simplistic, this is a wine with a plethora of layers. The bouquet is particularly lifted and spicy this year, with violets and mixed spice hovering over fruit mince and dark chocolate oak. In time, coal, black olive and Satsuma plum aromas unravel.

November 30, 2014

The Best Restaurant Menu for Breakfast in Melbourne

Best Restaurant in Melbourne

Starting your day right is the whole idea behind taking breakfast right, which simply means never skipping your first meal of the day and having healthier food choices as well.  According to nutritional experts, skipping breakfast or having too little can set us up for overeating later in the day. But a healthy breakfast can give you energy, the feeling of being full, and set you up for smart decisions in your day-to-day activities. It is a definitely a plus if you take your breakfast in style, your meal prepared and served with a flourish in fancy restaurants.       

The options for healthy and scrumptious breakfast meals are plenty. Here's a look at some of the Best Restaurants in Melbourne menu for breakfast, along with expert tips for making them even healthier:

November 4, 2014

10 Best Restaurants Worth Visiting in Essendon North, Melbourne

Best Restaurants Melbourne

In the Essendon area in Melbourne, restaurants are as diverse as they are many attracting people from surrounding areas and even out of state. Most of these restaurants are award winning too, attesting to the fact that Australian chefs have come into their own as among the world’s best. Sky is the limit on the culinary range of the offerings of these Essendon. They serve authentic Mediterranean dishes, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Italian, and French cooking.  You name it. They have it.

Brickmakers Arms Location in Melbourne

European Fine Dining in Essendon - Brickmakers Arms Restaurant


Physical Location: 

1018 Mt Alexander Road,
Essendon, VIC 3040, Australia

Telephone Number:

+61 3 9337 4422

Best Restaurants in Melbourne - Brickmakers Arms

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