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Beat Eats’ Best Finds of 2018

Digesting the best food from 2018.

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Seeing as everybody on the earth is wrapping things up for the year, I thought I might as well do the same and share my favourite food that I’ve discovered in 2018 — because who doesn’t love looking back with nostalgia.
 
This year, as you may have read, I continued my obsession with Italian food. I will never get over the incredible spread of options available to us here in Melbourne thanks to the migrants that shared their culture. I dined mostly at Mr Pietro, Kaprica, Shop 225 and Mario’s. My favourite dishes have been the gnocchi pomodoro at Mr Pietro, the broccoli pizza at Kaprica, the tiramisu at Shop 225, and the pasta amatriciana at Mario’s. Capitano, Bar Liberty’s recently-opened sibling, cannot escape an honourable mention though, as they are a particularly snug venue to spend time at. Their deep-dish pizza is sublime, as is their wooden decor that feels smooth, sleek and stylish. 
 
Onto the asian cuisines, Jinda Thai, hidden off Victoria Street, has been a solid choice for me this year. When dining here, I’ll always order the papaya salad, the jungle curry, the tamarind fish (their most popular dish) and coconut rice. Other great asian eateries are Viet Rose Vietnamese Restaurant on Brunswick Street (the classics here are delightful), and Shimbashi Japanese Soba & Sake Bar along Smith Street. At Shimbashi, I order edamame as well as the smoked salmon cold noodle salad. They also serve a delicious sesame soup. Mukka is my favourite Indian eatery along Brunswick Street, and is where I head for light and spicy Indian delicacies such as dosa. On the pub front, the Builders Arm’s Hotel is the only pub I’ll go to for steak night (Monday nights). My recommendation: always order your steak medium rare and ask for their delicious selection of mustards. 
 
And now for the guilty pleasure that I rarely share, but seeing as the deal expires in January, I simply must make this known – I’m talking about Foresters Pub & Dining on the corner of Gertrude and Smith Street. Yes, you’re correct, it’s that strange looking pub (that kind of looks like a TAB), but simply walk inside and you’ll find that the establishment is actually lovely. Plus, they offer $5 parmas (including eggplant parmas) every night of the week from 4pm to 10pm. Unfortunately, the deal expires in January 2019 so get in quick.