The Grain Store

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Once you’ve ditched the car, you can concentrate on the space. If you’re after a warm atmosphere with homely food, go elsewhere. The Grain Store is a terrifically polished tribute to when buildings in the area were holding stores for shipments of grain. The room feels like a provincial-inspired trophy kitchen with its polished marble tables and bench tops framed by flawless timber. The design is undoubtedly slick, but it’s a touch too shiny to fit the ‘rustic’ mould.

Service was spot on, with waitstaff well informed about the locally grown and harvested food. The Grain Store just gets away with being one of the last cafés to use ‘seasonal’ and ‘honest food’ as selling points. These days, those elements are more or less expected. But these guys practise what they preach; The Grain Store is the only CBD location that doubles as a designated CERES Fair Food Organic Food Delivery Service pick up point.

Coffee is by ST. ALi or Axil Coffee Roasters depending on your preference, or for an extra 50 cents you can sip single origin or clasp coffee of the day between your wintery hands. My cold drip – which was poured at the table – was refreshing, but if you’re willing to spend $8 on juice, the house-made spirulina with pineapple, pear and mint is the way to go.

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Sofia Levin

Culinary travel journalist Sofia Levin uses food as a medium to celebrate difference. Based in Melbourne, she has a decade of experience writing for publications such as Lonely Planet, Good Food, Nat Geo Traveller, SBS Food, delicious., Domain Review, Broadsheet, Time Out and in-flight magazines. She co-authors travel and restaurant guidebooks and has a fiercely loyal social media following that embraces her mission to #EatCuriously. In 2020 Sofia launched Seasoned Traveller, a newsletter and website that encourages people to learn more about other cultures through food. Referred to as “one of Melbourne’s most influential and creative social media personalities” by Visit Victoria, she also works closely with brands and tourism boards to create and host content campaigns.

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