Whether you want to share a meal with a pal, save some cash or taste a bit of luxury on a budget, we've dug up some neat eats.
Sashimi can make your credit card whimper but for $20 you can get your kingfish (or your wagyu udon) on as part of Akachochin's weekday lunch sets, available Monday to Friday noon-3pm.
33 South Wharf Promenade, South Wharf, 03 9245 9900, akachochin.com.au
Belles Hot Chicken, Fitzroy
Winner, winner, chicken dinner. Grab some friends and share some Nashville-style fried chicken. The Baller Bucket at Belles includes 16 wings, four sides and sauces for $65. (Also Richmond and Windsor.)
150 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, 03 9077 0788, belleshotchicken.com
Captain Baxter's Friday lunchtime feast. Photo: Supplied
Captain Baxter, St Kilda
For a gorgeous five-course Asian buffet and St Kilda sea views, head to Captain Baxter for their $35-a-head Friday lunch. Minimum four people.
10-18 Jacka Boulevard, St Kilda, 03 8534 8999, captainbaxter.com.au
Inside the renovated Cutler and Co.. Photo: Wayne Taylor
Cutler & Co, Fitzroy
A regular degustation at Cutler & Co will start around $150 but a lush, seasonal, four-course Sunday lunch comes in at exactly half that. The last Sunday of each month showcases a favourite Australian producer.
55–57 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, 03 9419 4888, cutlerandco.com.au
Duck noodles also feature on Long Chim's weekday lunch menu. Photo: Supplied
Long Chim, Melbourne
Get a taste of David Thompson's revered Thai street food cooking with a choice of four seasonal bowls – noodles, soups, a laksa – and specially brewed Thai sodas to match for $25. Available Monday to Friday noon-2.30pm.
Crown Melbourne, Yarra Promenade, 8 Whiteman Street, Southbank, 03 9292 5777, crownmelbourne.com.au/restaurants/premium/long-chim/
From Monday to Thursday, you can grab a barbecue bun, a side and a can for just $18. So make that a fried chicken bun, a side of green bean slaw and a Moon Dog beer and still get change from a lobster.
167 Swan Street, Richmond, 03 9041 5393, meatmother.com.au
Lunch with a view at Naked in the Sky. Photo: Eddie Jim
Naked in the Sky, Fitzroy
Naked for Satan does rockin' pinchos, but head to the rooftop bar and not only are you afforded astonishing city views, you can also get any tapas dish for $9 at lunch on weekdays or on Sunday evening.
285 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, 03 9416 2238, nakedforsatan.com.au/naked-in-the-sky
Empanadas from San Telmo's 'El Expreso' menu. Photo: Supplied
San Telmo, Melbourne
On Monday and Tuesday at lunchtime, you can get three courses of Argentinian deliciousness, bookended by an empanada and an alfajor (shortbread-style biscuits bound with dulce de leche), with three mains to choose from in between, and a glass of wine, for $35.
14 Meyers Place, Melbourne, 03 9650 5525, santelmo.com.au
Ramen at Spring & Summer. Photo: Supplied
Spring & Summer, St Kilda
Every Wednesday, the kitchen crew at pan-Asian St Kilda eatery Spring & Summer spend the day cooking up ramen so you can slurp a bowl for a tenner in the evening.
192 Barkly Street, St Kilda, 03 9044 2684, springandsummer.com.au
Tommy Ruff's tackle box for two. Photo: Supplied
Tommy Ruff, Elsternwick
Haul anchor and head to Elsternwick, where Tommy Ruff has tackle boxes for two, with fish, calamari, king prawns, potato cakes and chips for $32.50. (Also in Windsor and Mordialloc.)
Shop 3, 1-3 Carre Street, Elsternwick, 03 9077 8815, tommyruff.com.au
The Good Food Guide Awards presented by Citi and Vittoria will be held in October. The national Good Food Guide will be available at bookstores, supermarkets and newsagents around Australia.