Eat, drink and play the month away at Melbourne Festival
Melbourne Festival is now in its 31st year and is better than ever. With critics hailing this year’s celebrations as some of the best yet, what could be better than to kick things off with a special night of cocktails and canapés at some of the festival’s favourite haunts?
The night started off at Lucy Lui and their signature cocktail, The Floating Market, a sweet concoction of Pear puree and lime swizzled with rosemary vodka. Lucy Lui, already notorious city-wide for its vibrancy and panache, totally outdid themselves with their simplicity and preternatural couplings of flavours and textures.
The fresh betel leaf with crisp rice and chilli and lime smoked trout, was a revelation- it was as much as I could do not to take the whole plate. The ensuing evening was a curated tour of cocktails and canapes across some of Melbourne’s finest venues, but as the first stop, Lucy Lui was hard to top.
We travelled on through Garden State with its stunningly compiled cocktails and cheesecake doughnuts. Next, a pit stop at Harley House with its weird interior and self-proclaimed best Pisco Sour this side of somewhere. Finally, we ended up at the luxurious Collins Quarter for a suavely relaxed wine tasting with the Yarra Valley’s very own Mandala winery.
When you think of after-work drinks, the quiet courtyard and the cool breeze, the large glasses of wine and the calm, you’re thinking about Collins Quarter whether you know it or not.
And on the way home, delving into the party bag we’d been gifted, it was a welcome treat to discover two tickets for the much anticipated House of Mirrors. For the as-yet-unacquainted, this enormous construction has been resurrected from its recent time in Sydney onto the forecourt of our very own Arts Centre. Forty tonnes of steel and 15 tonnes of glass make up this mirrored masterpiece, you feel part exposed, part intrigued and all the while, a little lost.
A little advice: make sure you’re wearing your Sunday best because you’ll be seeing a lot of yourself, with more mirrors than you’re ever likely to encounter again! The whole experience opens one up for a little self-examination which certainly isn’t the time to be donning that much-loved-but-tattered t-shirt you like to wear to bed sometimes.
The city is lit up for Melbourne Festival until the 22nd of October with all the flavourful, colourful and artful delights Victorians take so much pride in. Look through the festival progam and you’ll find a smorgasboard of art, performance and music. Our pick of the festival is New York cabaret star Taylor Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music.
Restaurants and bars featured on the opening night event:
Lucy Liu Kitchen & Bar
Garden State Hotel