for all new international students

Category: cheap eats

Dahon Tea lounge

This place is located in South Melbourne opposite the South Melbourne Market and is on the way to Melbourne Sports and Aquatics center.
A number of bloggers have written about this place and quite liked it, so I decided to check it out and meet up with the Japan club for their Sports day at 1:30pm.
The place is really welcoming and its run by Filipinos  I have never tried Filipino food before so was willing to give it a try.

For those that don’t like Filipino food there is also Western food. They do have a $10 Baguette, Chips and Soft drink special, but I was more interested to try their traditional dishes and teas.
They were so busy at lunchtime. They had two big groups to cater for hence the service was a little slow on the uptake. They have a few communual tables and I sat at one of them.
Whilst I was waiting I checked out the bathrooms. Dahon doesn’t have any specifically so I had to use the shopping centre’s one which are upstairs outside Spotlight. And boy were they filthy!
 And I think they forgot my cookie with the Green tea ($3.50 for one), but the Pancit was really good ($11.80). And so was the BBQ Skewer ($2).
Pancit is a Fillipino dish with Rice vermicelli and sauce with everything crushed and mixed inside. The tofu too was crushed and it was nice.
The only thing that I didn’t get to try was the Lumpia. Oh well next time when I come back I will try this and the desserts

Dahon Tea Lounge on Urbanspoon


The Oxford Scholar Hotel

The Oxford Scholar Hotel has been around for years and its liked by many students, workers and tourists alike.
It is just next to the new SAB building at RMIT and the RMIT students frequent it for lunch and drinks. Drinks here are not too bad and I didn’t buy them. Someone in the Japan club bought them for me. That and the chips ($7 per bowl).

The waitstaff here are sure lovely and polite. I loved the lady with the Kiwi accent serving us. She was lovely.
The chips were nicely done and I shall be back for the meals.

Oxford Scholar Hotel on Urbanspoon

De Alleyway Espresso and Panzerotti

I walked past De Alleyway and have heard many good things from the Eat and Be merry team. It is in the same place as the Chokolait and they have been opened for six months.
Their kitchen is open and you can see what they are making
The staff are really friendly and down to earth.  De Alleyway staff did just that in a friendly way so I was happy to give them some suggestions.
I loved the couch.

Their motto: keep everything simple which they did brilliantly. Hence the small space and limited food menu which changes daily
Their coffee beans are from Mailing room and when my long black ($3.30) came to the table it smelt winey. It was bitter with a small hint of fruit in there.
I had a gaelic tomato tart with salad ($6.50). Their salad changes daily and today it was a half poached egg salad with lemon dressing. I quite liked the dressing. They could have put just a tiny bit of onion ot it if people preferred, but it all comes down to preference.
The tart was a little soft- it was more of a quiche. But I still liked the fact that it was homemade, just like most things in Melbourne
Come down here when you have only got some change and this will feed you really easily. Oh yeah and in winter it comes with soup instead.
One word for it: yummilicious.

The other place I went to also fills me up easily and that is Panzerotti. It hasn’t got a lot of exposure yet, but I’m sure that it will.
I came only for the dessert pastry of raspberry and White chocolate ($3.90). It was devine but messy to eat and I got the juice everywhere. And it was filling. Yay for some good things on this side of town. It’s not often that you find good things in the city for cheap

De Alleyway Espresso on Urbanspoon Panzerotti on Urbanspoon

PInk Cafe by Katherine

All the meals there are under $10. Hence this is great for students.

They have many hot dogs, popcorns, waffles and drinks and no vegetarian food. Bah that’s ok as I do eat some form of meat.

Now I have not much knowledge about Hong Kong waffles because I never have been to Hong Kong before. But Sally would know about these

I wanted to try one today but they were out of stock. So I had today’s special for $3.90. The special was a American hot dog, done HK style.

The lady there was just ok.

But I saw the popcorn machine and went wow. It reminded me of the old school days.

The dog was a little undercooked and the bread was like the noraml tip top ones. But for that price you can’t complain. I loved the onions and cheese though. Pity I didn’t really like that much of the sausage itself.

But I will come back just to try their yummilicious looking popcorn and their waffles. Btw I don’t know when they are open. Good student meals to be had here. Just wished that they’d advertise their opening hours.

Pink Cafe on Urbanspoon


Yamato is a Japanese place. I didn’t know that they were a branch until I got onto Urbanspoon and found out that they were.
The store in Exhibition st is not far away from my workplace.  It is tiny compared to the other store. But I loved the deocr inside. It was lovely and cozy and I felt like I was in Japan. I loved the table with the low seating.
But I didn’t like having to walk outside and on lots and lots of pebbles and stairs to go to the bathroom. Now imagine if I was wearing heels… I’d fall. The bathrooms were a bit dirty and a bit badly maintained

Look how dirty this is

Love the steps- its a very Japanese feel

Other than that:

I had the yasai bento ($9.60) and the green tea ($1.20 per cup). The green tea was nothing much to write home about because it was so watery. But I loved some of the elements of the yasai bento. Yasai means vegetarian. I loved the fresh vegetables and the tempura and the seaweed salad was really good. It is hard to find decent salad and my salad had the nice chewiness to it.

Not entirely sure that I liked the Agedashi tofu though. it was a bit bland and there was no bonito flakes in it.

Am also not sure that I liked the rice though. It tasted like it was microwaved rather than cooked freshly. It was really hard to eat with chopsticks.

Whilst I liked that they used fresh vegetables in the wafu salad… I’m not entirely sure that I loved the dressing in this.

I’d like to come back with the Japan Club as they would love it. The restaurant takes bookings for large groups and they do dinner. This is much better than any other Japanese restaurants I have tried. I wonder why it doesn’t have more exposure on Urbanspoon.

Yamato Japanese on Urbanspoon


Crossways is a little cheap lunch place next door to the RMIT Capitol theatre. It has been visited by many students, workers and bloggers alike.
It is a vegetarian place and you cannot bring any outside foods here. But that’s ok I wasn’t planning to bring outside food in.
It is a not for profit place and all the meals are homemade. You can have refills of the main as it is an all you can eat.

It is run by volunteers and the restaurant has received an award from RMIT university. I love all the pictures on the wall.
Although it was busy the service was quick. I was out within the hour.
The main meals change daily and there is only one special.
They have $5.50 meals for students and pensioners and $7.50 meals for everyone else.  It is cash only. It includes a drink, a main, pappadums and dessert. The main changes daily but todays main was a chickpea curry.
The curry looked a bit watery, but it was nice. I loved all the beans and vegetables and I love that they did 3/4 of a plate full of vegetables and one quarter of it rice otherwise I would not be able to finish this.
I love love loved the pappadums. They were huge and really crispy.
I have never had halawa before so I can’t really comment on this. But halawa is sweet and loved the custard that came with it. And it comes with all sorts of different fruit inside. Today’s flavour was pineapple.
Yum I would reccommend that everyone visits this lil place as it the cheapest and best meal you can get in Melbourne. And this is the sort of place that I’d visit with loose change.

Crossways Food For Life on Urbanspoon

%d bloggers like this: