These are our top places to be now we are free.
Now that Victoria is officially out of lockdown, it’s time to head out and explore our beautiful region once more, supporting all those local businesses who have been doing it especially tough over the past few weeks.
If dining in at restaurants, sipping cocktails at bars and meeting mates at cafes is your go-to, much like ourselves, we’ve come up with a quick guide to our absolute favourite places in Geelong to hit up for that taste of sweet, sweet post-lockdown life.
Before making plans, don’t forget to check the rules on what you can and cannot do in Victoria right now, and be sure to check with venues about their capacities.
The Brewery by Bells Beach Brewing
For good vibes and ice-cold beer.
One of the biggest losses in each lockdown is the satisfaction of enjoying a frosty, perfectly poured pint of the amber nectar at a vibin’ venue in the company of some of your best mates.
If this is just what you need to celebrate the return to Geelong life, then Bells Beach Brewing’s Taproom is the place to be.
If you’ve ever paid them a visit in the heart of the surf industry hub, then you’d already know that Bell Beach Brewing are the epitome of that relaxed, coastal vibe Torquay is renowned for, and this Geelong venue is no different, making it the ideal spot to spend your weekend.
Positioned conveniently at the iconic bar space located in Denny’s Place behind Beav’s Bar, The Brewery fits right in with an urban industrial fit-out and exterior, understated décor and abundance of seating room, truly making it the ultimate destination to sink a few surf-inspired pints with the crew, whether it be Saturday night or for a cheeky Sunday arvo session.
So what can you get?
Stocking many of the much-loved Bells Beach Brews on tap as well as in the fridge, the bar offers its entire range of fresh, locally produced beer. At a glance, their core range boasts a tonne of bold and interesting flavours, including the likes of Bird Rock Brown (coffee brown ale), South Side Saison (Belgian farmhouse ale), Addis Pale Ale (a crispy tropical pale ale), Bells Session Ale (mid-strength session ale), Posso’s IPA (hop-forward brew), Endless Summer Lager (a German Helles Style lager) and the Hells Bells XPA, an all-Aussie malt and hop beer brewed in honour of the cancelled 2020 Bells Beach Rip Curl Pro. The Hells Bells is our pick, but truly, whether you’re into lager, pale ales or a stout, you’ll most likely find yourself sipping on the best beer you’ve ever had.
But, if beer isn’t your thing, there’s also a collection of spirits as well as all the most-loved non-alcoholic drinks for the kids and designated drivers.
Easily one of the best breweries on the Surf Coast, whether you’re a beer connoisseur, or you’re on the hunt for a new post-iso celebration destination, you’re going to love this Geelong taproom.
Bells Beach Brewing Geelong is located at Denny’s Place (behind Beav’s Bar).
For the best morning dining Geelong has to offer
If you’re looking for somewhere new to go for a casual spot of coffee or brunch this weekend, definitely add Newfolk Café to your must-visit list
With hand-painted stools, a deep blue feature wall, indoor plants and stunning pendants, Newfolk sports a casual and mellow neighbourhood vibe, and one that all of Newtown know and love, sitting pretty in the old butcher’s building down Skene Street.
It’s the happy vibes though, as much for the friendly barista’s perfectly steamed milk, that has the locals coming back time and time again, especially with coffee made from Melbourne’s esteemed Small Batch Roasting. If you’re feeling adventurous, we recommend you do yourself a favour and ask Harry – the legend behind the coffee machine – for a filter coffee. It will definitely knock your socks off.
While the coffee is the gold standard (as well as the milkshakes and hot chocolates), it’s also got one of the best breaky menus in the land. And we can demonstrate in two words… Breakfast Gnocchi. Breaky gnocchi is what a hug from a long-lost friend would be like, and Newfolk’s is exactly that: a bowl of the soft, handmade potato with mushrooms in a butter and sage sauce topped with provolone. Unbeatable.
If gnocchi isn’t your thing, no stress, this trendy little café has you sorted with its all-day menu that deeply reflects everything that Newfolk set out to be – fresh, experimental, nourishing and delicious, with creations and flavour combinations that taste as considered as they look on the plate.
Keep it fresh with Avocado on Toast and spicy csabai jam, roasted bull horn pepper, provolone and a poached egg; warm yourself with a bowl of porridge, complete with berries, brown sugar and coconut flakes; or treat yourself to indulgent blueberry hotcakes with bloody orange, chocolate mousse and hazelnut.
There are also the classics like housemade baked beans, a breaky burger, Reuben sandwich, eggs benedict, corn and zucchini fritters, and of course, eggs your way with toast and however many sides you can handle. They also stock the very best pastries, including melt-in-your-mouth ham and cheese croissants from the well-loved Born and Bread Bakehouse and a fresh selection of house-baked treats.
Is your mouth watering as much as ours is right now?!
You can find Newfolk Café at 105 Skene Street, Newtown.
For an elevated dining experience
Since opening back in 2017, Frankie has become Geelong’s premier cocktail and wine bar, function venue and pan-Asian restaurant and is one of the best spots to go when you’re looking to impress or just have a high-quality dining experience any night of the week.
Housed inside one of Geelong’s most beautiful venues (with its high ceilings, large windows and architraves and intricate ceiling details), Frankie could be summed up as a perfect pastel diner, with all polished leather, beige leather couches, stunning art and soft rose-gold accents. It’s truly stunning and is a breath of fresh air when you’re looking to treat yourself post-lockdown.
With such an atmosphere, it’s only elevated further by the exceptional menu on offer, spanning all parts of Asia and resulting in a stunning feast that will transport your tastebuds to cloud nine.
Best of all, this place is made for sharing so there’s no shame in ordering up an absolute feast.
There’s housemade dim sims, Asian vegetable fritters, crispy prawn and chicken spring rolls, Japanese style crispy popcorn chicken and flash-fried calamari to keep the hunger levels at bay. We recommend ordering the prawn and ginger steamed dumplings and the pan-fried pork and chive gyoza, both served with delicious accompanying dipping sauces.
If you like dishes with a little more heart, there’s also crispy sesame rice balls, Southeastern Asian lamb, BBQ pork ribs, Korean fried chicken and Japanese beef kushiyaki. Round it all out with rice, Asian greens and a selection of bao buns and you’ll be reminiscing about this place for years to come.
Alongside the blissful atmosphere and outstanding food menu, Frankie is renowned around town for its killer drink’s menu, featuring wines from local and state wineries, and gorgeously garnished exotic cocktails, courtesy of the award-winning staff.
Standout cocktail concoctions that you just HAVE to try include the Clover Club (usually made with Bombay Sapphire Gin, Lemon Juice, Raspberry Syrup, Aquafaba), the Cosmo (42 Below Vodka, Lime Juice, Cointreau, Cranberry Juice), Expresso Martini (Vodka, Fresh Expresso, Crème de café, Baileys Irish Crème) and the Bees Knees (Bombay Sapphire Gin, Lemon Juice, Honey Syrup).
We sometimes come here just for the cocktails – they’re that good.
You can find Frankie at at 9-11 Little Malop Street, Geelong. Book your table here.
For that American BBQ feast
If you’re craving the best of American cooking with a touch of Mexican flavours, Mulita BBQ – a joint for all burger lovers – is the place to be post-lockdown.
Located out in North Geelong, these guys have earned themselves a solid reputation for their American BBQ with fresh and vibrant Mexican influences, with their dedication to the Texas-style smoked meats (with some dishes requiring up to 12 hours of smoking) bringing us back time and time again.
Just one taste and you’ll become a loyal customer, we guarantee it.
Open on Friday and Saturdays, here you’ll find a selection of incredible dishes, from the 200g black angus brisket, to the red gum smoked pork belly, smoked jalapeno and cheddar sausage, or the smoked then fried BBQ chicken wings. For those that like a bit of everything from the smokers, there’s a pretty tasty ‘Pitmasters Selection’ dish which gets you everything we’ve just mentioned, plus your choice of two sides.
They’ve also got a range of out-of-this-world delicious burgers, packed high and forced with flavour. Think Black Angus Reserve Brisket Burger, Smoked pulled pork burger or even the Nashville Hot Chicken, available in Southern, Hot, Extra Hot, Medium or Inferno… ooofftt.
Alongside the burgers, you’ll also find Nachos, Tex-Mec Tacos, fried chicken tenders, cowboy Caviar (fresh bean salad), creamy potato salad, Texas chilli cheese fries, seasoned fries, and some tasty kid’s meals – plus a pretty engaging space for the kids to run off and play.
If you’re planning on getting together with your squad (well, up to 10 of them), Mulita are actually doing BBQ table share platters, with brisket, pulled pork, fried chicken, sausage, BBQ wings, sides, sauces and bread. This part is $39 per person and available as the whole table…. Or you can pay an extra $30 and it will be a bottomless affair. You can get as much delicious BBQ until you stay stop.
And of course, you can’t have BBQ without beer, and they’ve got a bunch of local drops (including Furphy and Blackmans) to keep you going.
Sign. Us. Up.
Mulita BBQ is located at 64 Separation St, North Geelong
Sweet Adeline Desserts
For something sweet
Whether you’re keen to hit the walking track or just stock up on some sweets, Sweet Adeline Desserts is the pop-up you need to swing by.
Serving artistic desserts and delicious beverages out of a vintage caravan bar at an open riverside space courtesy of the fantastic team at Elite Training Centre in Newtown, right on the river, this little gem is giving sweet tooths something to get excited about.
Spawned from the notion that life’s all about following your dreams, the brains behind Sweet Adeline Desserts – Geelong locals Lee and Angie Mifsud – are making good on the promise to offer something truly special to Geelong; ‘something sweet, with a touch of the whimsical’.
Here you will find plenty of outdoor seating, aromatic barista coffee, hot chocolates, milkshakes as well as a selection of their delicious handcrafted desserts and cakes and even delicious pastries from local Ket Baker and toasties, available for both dine-in or takeaway.
While everything here is an absolute treat, it’s certainly the wow factor (and taste) of their artisanal desserts that has us coming back time and time again. Using fresh and locally sourced ingredients combined with the latest techniques, Sweet Adeline Desserts continually produce innovative dessert designs. The multiple layers of their creations bring a harmonious balance of flavours and textures that will tickle your taste buds, and they offer a range of creations that seamlessly blend with each event setting, creating a wide appeal.
From the white chocolate and coffee mousse/caramel and donut infused creme brulee centre/Kahlua jelly/espresso sponge base/espresso dark chocolate spray (yes really!), to the Rum Poached Pear with vanilla mousse, Hazelnut Praline and Dark chocolate Ganache, and the sleek strawberry yoghurt mousse cake, these creations are seriously next level.
Just take a look at their creation below – Salted Caramel, chocolate and Bailey’s dessert. Just wow.
With just a glance at their Instagram, we’re already salivating for the indulgent creations.
Sweet Adeline pop-up is located at 1/560 Latrobe Boulevard, Newtown, right on the edge of the picturesque Barwon River.