Royal Saxon

Royal Saxon.
Royal Saxon. Photo: Supplied

545 Church Street Richmond, Victoria 3121

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Opening hours L D Daily; bookings for early sittings only
Features Accepts bookings, Bar, Outdoor seating, Licensed
Prices Expensive (mains over $40)
Chef Simone Righetto
Seats 60
Payments eftpos, AMEX, Visa, Mastercard
Phone 03 9429 5277

Location, location, location. As Richmond's old colonial face continues to break out in trendy apartment blocks, the mantra holds true, even inside this lively, all-things-to-all-carousers gastropub. The choice of spaces – under the courtyard fig tree on a balmy evening, laughing and chatting around the big open bar, or kicking back in the industrial chic dining room inside – is one of the drawcards in this sociable place, a popular haunt despite hyped and pumping local competition. The food is everything you want from a good pub – charry black angus steak; blonde and tangled calamari; thin pizzas with classy mozzarella, house-cured meats and trendy topping combos like peas and prawns. Add a nicely chosen wine list and amiable service, and the occasional stumble with flavours and seasoning is easy to forgive. Sparkling tuna carpaccio jewelled with caperberries shows 'the Sax' has kitchen cred; the Facebook page aglow with laughing young faces shows it knows what else matters, too.

AND ... The courtyard spit-roast cranks up for suckling pig panini on many Sundays, so check the website.

VIBE Cool place to eat, meet and tweet.
BEST BIT The lovely space.
WORST BIT Pricey for pub food.