Friday, May 28, 2010

Stellini Bar - A happy little find on Little Collins.

I don't think I've done a random saunter around the city to try and figure out what to have for lunch for a long time. David and I decided to meet up for lunch, but we hadn't pre-determined where, which is very strange for me.

But we decided we eventually wanted to end up at Ralph Lauren, so made our way down to the Collins St end of town and then decided to go to Little Collins since there always seem to be cute eating places around the area.

As we walked along, some large lovely windows came into view and in them, a perfectly adorable looking restaurant. The charm of the place just oozed out of the windows and struck right into my little Melbournian heart.

I decided for us.

We had found Stellini Bar.

The space was just quaint, cosy and intimate. It felt like somebody loved the place, and didn't just own it.

A lot of these cafes I'm loving at the moment I've suddenly just realised, all have this communal table thing going on. And it's always a beautiful thick, sturdy wooden table. Hmm. Maybe that's what's winning me over. Clearly. (or well I'm sure it factors in somewhat...) It just makes a place seem more approachable and friendly since strangers can sit together if tight on space...

Specials were scrawled onto the tiles behind the counter, with what I thought looked to be very reasonable prices!

Although of course we had to have a quick glance over the menu.

I can always appreciate a place that has short, but exceptional sounding menu items, I'd much rather go somewhere that can do 10 dishes excellently, than 30 dishes decently.

Both David and I went for a chai tea, not chai latte this time! Which was lovely and soothing.

Whilst a lot of things on the menu were tempting me, the special of black pork stew just appealed to me incredibly, especially since it's a bit of a gray, overcast and cool day in Melbourne. The stew fit that perfectly, it was comforting food, warm and hearty, but without feeling seedy and unhealthy. It was rich with vegetables, I absolutely loved the peas and the pork was just so tender and fell apart in my mouth easily.

David got the warm pearl cous cous salad with poached chicken. This was so fresh, in looks and taste. The pearl cous cous was something I hadn't really had and I really enjoyed the texture and the flavour, as David said it was like eating a pearl...but squishy. Hmm. Maybe not the best metaphor, but it's certainly interesting. The tomatoes were sweet and juicy and I'm not sure what the dressing was, but it was quite delightful as well.

I may be a wee bit of a faster eater than David is...

As we went up to pay, we couldn't help but ogle at the dessert selection and when I discovered the biscotti was gluten looked so good. And was apparently made fresh that morning. I couldn't resist. It had chocolate, pistachios and almonds (I think) in it, a nice light treat after a very heartening meal.

I think I may have potentially found another favourite and/or regular spot for lunch, and maybe even dinner! All of the lunch meals didn't really go over the $16 mark and as you can see, they're a fairly good decent size. I saw some gnocchi go by me while paying which looked absolutely amazing as well.

From the website, I'm getting a feeling that Stellini is owned/run/something by the same people at Mess Hall, since they are linked to them, which is another place I've had a very nice and honest meal at with David as well.

I'm almost half hoping not too many people notice this place, as even during the typical Friday lunch rush period, the place wasn't too busy and I'd love to always be able to get a seat....

Stellini Bar
198 Little Collins St
Melbourne VIC 3000
(03) 9654 5074
Stellini Bar on Urbanspoon


  1. Hi,
    You always find such great places...
    I think eating with you guys would be very nice...

    Have a great day . SP

  2. Thanks for the tip - this is right near my work and I've never been! Food looks good, prices reasonable.

    Jetsetting Joyce