Chrissie’s buying trip to Melbourne last week included a mouth-watering, two-plate dinner at Higher Ground, a long-awaited cafe recently opened at the west end of Little Bourke Street.
Higher Ground opened nine weeks ago, two years after owners Nathan Toleman, Ben Clark, Diamond Rozakeas, Sam Slattery, Kim Sheridan and Nate Wilkins took on the heritage-listed 19th-century powerhouse.
Toleman says the venue is "not really a restaurant, not really a cafe – people can come in for coffee or lunch and stay for dinner".
With 16 chefs who've been through the likes of Jacques Reymond, Pope Joan and Supernormal on his roster, Nate Wilkins' daytime menu features smart takes on cafe brunch – maybe a cauliflower scramble with house-made flatbread; roasted mushrooms with polenta; or a wagyu short-rib roll with pickled daikon.
The evening menu, from Thursday to Saturday, is about plates which are inspired by the places the company of owners like to eat, such as MoVida, Embla and the Town Mouse; something to have with your favourite drink.
Coffee is from the group's own Square One roastery, which also supplies sibling venues Top Paddock and the Kettle Black.
The towering space winds over three levels, with lounge-type nooks giving it the feel of a hip hotel lobby and a monochromatic colour scheme lifted by greenery.
Open Mon-Wed 7am-4pm; Thu-Fri 7am-11pm; Sat 8am-11pm; Sun 8am-4pm.
650 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne, 03 8899 6219
I enjoyed every mouthful and received exceptional service in this amazing, new space. I trust you will too!