Having worked at Mortgage Choice in Oakleigh for 10 years, I have enjoyed eating and drinking at the excellent cafes, restaurants and providores around Eaton Mall (a 2 minute walk from my office). While the general standard is very high, I have some favourties.
If you need food for entertaining in the holiday season, or somewhere to meet up with friends, here are my top tips...
My favourite souvlaki and gyros in Oakleigh is from Mythos, Eaton Mall. Great quality meat, just right pittas and delicious chips on the side.
My favourite cafe latte or piccolo is from Vanilla, Eaton Mall. Their baristas make it with the right coffee-to-milk ratio. The milk is always perfectly frothed and at the right temperature. And if a warm, fresh out of the oven bougatsa happens to slip into my order, well...
My favourite fresh pasta is from Just Italy, a small cafe on Atherton Rd. They cut your pasta from fresh sheets when you place your order. Their sauces are classic Italian - simple and full of flavour. A lunchtime staple for me.
My favourite cakes are from Nikos, Eaton Mall. I'm not a sweet-tooth, but their baklava is hard to resist. So is eavesdropping on the men of Greece, sipping their short blacks and solving the problems of the world at outside tables.
Last but not least, my favourite butcher in all of Melbourne is Paragon, on Portman St. We get all our bbq and entertaining meats from Paragon - every time at least one guest will ask "where did you get that meat?". The quality and taste is excellent.