There are two types of late-night snacking. There's the kerbside gobbling you'll regret the next day, and there's the Arlechin model, where classy ballast is served till 3am. Owned by the Grossi family, Arlechin inhabits the walk-in cellar for Florentino, which backs onto the other side of the lane. It's been decked out like a wine cave with an arched cork ceiling and drop-down lights. The mood is cheeky, the cocktails are frisky and the food is snacky and light- hearted. You might chomp on a Sloppy Joe stuffed with baccalà and fried leek or a Bolognese jaffle, both Italian in inspiration but rethought for Melbourne's laneways. Cured kingfish might be jazzed up with grapes and cucumber; quail is salty, fried and drizzled with a secret barbecue sauce. The key dish is the midnight spaghetti, an instant classic, furled on the plate with spiced tomatoes and capers: simple and perfect, especially in the wee hours. Service is as nimble as the food with banter doled out like snacks. Just like an all-night train, Arlechin is a community service for a 24-hour city.
- Wheelchair access
Accepted card types:
- American Express
- Diners Club
This review was made independently for the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. The guide's reviewers visit unannounced and pay their way.