Just Open: Happy Place, South Melbourne

Happy Place's chia pudding.
Happy Place's chia pudding. Photo: Supplied

Do not adjust your screens. Melbourne coffee pioneer Salvatore Malatesta and effervescent celebrity nutritionist Lola Berry are set to open Happy Place, a holistic lifestyle cafe at South Melbourne Market (opens Tuesday June 14). 

What is a holistic lifestyle cafe? I hear you ask. Well, it's gluten-free, dairy-free, refined sugar-free and FODMAP friendly. But let's not focus on what you can't have.

Beetroot lattes at Happy Place.
Beetroot lattes at Happy Place. Photo: Supplied

The cafe part is geared towards take away (although there are eight or so window seats); think chia puddings in the AM and mix-and-match salads throughout the day: a rotation of vegetable-based dishes (how about a sweet potato and broccoli salad with a poached egg, green hummus and sauerkraut?) to pair with protein options such as poached chicken, seared tuna or kangaroo meatballs.

Oh, and there's bone broth. Did we mention it's paleo?

Drinks-wise there's "crystal infused water" for aligning those chakras, kombucha on tap courtesy of Sydney-based Wild Kombucha, cold-pressed juices and smoothies using Berry's recipes (mostly fructose free) and hot drinks in the form of turmeric, carob and mushroom lattes from the "alternative brew bar".

It's caffeine free too; if that's a problem, Clement Coffee is two doors down.

The space is as good for you as the food; designed by architect Fiona Lynch (who did an excellent job on Jess Ho's Smalls bar) there's more crystals, this time mixed with quartz in the floor, a fluid concrete bar, a mirrored ceiling as a centrepiece and a glass-fronted cool room for vegie-gazing.

Don't worry, being healthy isn't boring – a sweets counter stacked with a raw take on favourites such as mint slice, key lime pie and snickers bars will put a pep in your step.

Open daily 7am-5pm.

Shop 56 South Melbourne Market, 117 Cecil Street, South Melbourne