Food: Centre Place, Melbourne, Australia

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Once you have finished checking out some of Melbourne’s free activities and attractions, it’s time to check out its laneways.

Centre Place, which runs between Flinders Lane and Collins St, is one of Melbourne’s busiest nooks. Its eclectic hole-in-the-wall cafes, restaurants and shops are surrounded by vibrant stencil art and graffiti.

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Source: Wiki Commons

Each bohemian-style eatery has its own flair, from Spanish inspired ‘Lorca Cafe’ and THE soup place ‘In a Rush’, to coffees and bagels at ‘Jungle Juice Bar’.

On the day I visited Centre Place, I decided to try the French-inspired ‘Aix Cafe Creperie Salon’ – and I was glad I did!

My dining buddies and I sat very snuggly – almost shoulder to shoulder –  as we waited for our well-priced food to come out. I chose the Nutella and fresh strawberry crepe special ($9) and my friends both chose the salami baguette ($7).

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The crepe was cooked to perfection and the chef certainly wasn’t stingy with the Nutella – in fact the last couple of bites were a struggle. But, I’m not a huge sweet tooth! My friends enjoyed their baguette, agreeing that it was full of flavour, with just enough bite to the salami and a tasty but not over-powerful olive tapenade.

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While we were munching away , we overheard a customer asking for a bowl of “the best minestrone soup ever”. The wait staff apologised to her, saying they hadn’t made any on this 29°C day. She was very upset, saying she had looked forward to it ever since she’d arrived in Melbourne for her holiday. I felt sad for her, but also somewhat pleased – I’d discovered a gem!

On our departure, we were charged only $19 for the bill. Apparently the baguettes are discounted to $5 after 2:30pm. Score!

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Source: Wiki Commons

Over to you now, fine readers. What are the best laneway cafes and restaurants in Melbourne?

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