Healthy Eating

We're championing fresh food that packs a flavour punch, from salads and vegetable-packed bowls to grains and light desserts.

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Fast autumn dinners

Autumn weather signals the arrival of soups, broths, roasts and more hearty meals.

Flour and Stone Recipes

Baker extraordinaire Nadine Ingram of Sydney's Flour and Stone cooks up a sweet storm for Easter, including the much loved bakery's greatest hit.

Roasted cauliflower salad with yoghurt dressing and almonds

The cauliflower is roasted until it starts to caramelise, which adds extra depth of flavour to this winning salad. Serve it warm or at room temperature.

All Star Yum Cha

What happens the morning after the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards? We treat the chefs to a world-beating yum cha session, as Dani Valent discovers.

Lemon tart

It's really important to seal the pastry well to prevent any seepage during cooking, and to trim the pastry soon after cooking. Let the tart cool in the tin before removing it, or it will crack.

Spelt cashew and broccoli bowl with yoghurt dressing

This nicely textured salad transports well, making it ideal for picnics or to take to barbecues. The broccoli can be kept raw and shaved on a mandolin, too.

Bali's new wave of restaurants, hotels and bars

The restaurant and hotel scene on Australia's favourite holiday island has never been more exciting and Australian chefs, owners and restaurateurs are leading the charge, writes Samantha Coomber.

Melbournes finest meet Worlds Best

Leading chefs descend on Melbourne in April for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. We asked local hospitality folk who they’d abduct for the day and where they’d take them to show off their city. There may be coffee, there may be culture, but in the end it’s cocktails.

Uncle Downtown, Melbourne

A coal pit is pretty much de rigueur for any self-respecting restaurant aiming for street cred in these smoke-obsessed times. Pair your coal pit with currently trending Vietnamese food, as Uncle is doing in St Kilda, and you're painting yourself in all kinds of cool.

Now known as Uncle Downtown, the ground-level bar in the Carlisle Street venue has a new fit-out by design firm Foolscap Studio that sees a flock of colourful woven plastic food covers crowding the ceiling and a tight focus on the new 1.2-metre coal pit.

The pit-driven bar menu is all about tapping into the memories of chef Dai Duong and Uncle co-owner Rene Spence. "One of my strong food memories is of the meat charred over coals in Hoi An in central Vietnam," Spence says. "Dai remembers all this food as a kid, too. Barbecue is so simple, so powerful… memories on a stick. We wanted to capture those memories, but the key is not to overcomplicate things."

Dai's memories of Vietnamese home cooking will see marinades to the fore in the likes of pork steeped in condensed milk and lemongrass, and chicken coated in a ginger, soy and pâté combination before being given the pit treatment.

Cocktails like the Smokin' Ho, a mix of pit-seared pineapple and chilli, lime juice, Vietnamese mint and tequila, will be on hand alongside an all-can beer list.

The opening of Uncle Downtown next Friday coincides with Uncle's first birthday and will no doubt see queues forming along Carlisle Street. Luckily, Uncle Downtown features a new takeaway window that will serve skewers and banh mi so there's no need to go hungry, even if you can't get in.

Uncle Downtown, Thurs-Sat from 5pm, 188 Carlisle St, St Kilda, Vic , (03) 9041 2668

Looking for more Melbourne dining options? Check out our list of the best restaurants in Melbourne.


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