New kids on the block

Build on the lingering New Year enthusiasm (while resolutions are still top-of-mind) and trade in your standard lunchtime venue for one of these newly-opened establishments. Who knows, a new lunch spot could be just the ticket to a successful 2016.

Axil Coffee Roasters have opened a second CBD location, Axil SXL, nestled in a shopping mall in Southern Cross lane. Serving a selection of upmarket toasties and caffeinated brews, the new location offers an easy and appealing venue for east-enders.

Choose to take away or sit-in and watch the meticulous baristas work their magic. As a lunch option, the slow-cooked shredded lamb is hard to go past. It is open Monday to Friday from 7am until 4pm. Axil SXL joins standing-room only espresso bar, Axil Coffee, on Flinders Lane.

Tetsujin is the latest food offering to grace the luxe Emporium centre, situated on level four. The sushi train and Japanese barbecue venue caters for both the in-and-out and long-lunching crowds. You can grab a seat at the bar and jump on board the sushi train for a quick bite, or hit the grill and choose from a range of meat sets if you’ve got a little longer. Tetsujin is open Monday to Thursday and Sunday from 11am until 11pm, and Friday and Saturday from 11am until midnight.

Footscray favourite 8bit Burger Bar has set up shop in the CBD, transforming an old convenience store on the corner of Swanston and Little Bourke streets into a retro arcade-inspired diner. The space has limited seating with a capacity of around 20 and is aimed toward the takeaway crowd. They are serving their cult soft bun burgers, curry ketchup drenched hot dogs and frenzy-inducing milkshakes from 11am ‘til late, seven days a week.

Perhaps more suited to an afternoon pick-me-up as opposed to lunch, but definitely worth a mention, Doughboys Doughnuts has finally found a permanent home supplying their glazed goodies five days a week on Bourke St.

Previously sharing spaces and popping-up in various city locations, the announcement that the Doughboys crew were soon to be enticing CBD locals was met with much excitement from donut devotees.

In addition to a rotating menu of dipped “on demand” creations, Doughboys are serving coffee by Small Batch Roasting Co. Whilst the cronut may have exited the scene with the passing of 2015, it seems the donut phenomenon continues to reign supreme.

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Ashley Davies

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