Neo Lemonade swung open its doors this June at Docklands to put this almost forgotten central suburb back on the foodie map! Owner Steven Velkovski, who took inspirations from his twin sons’ (Leo and Lennon) childhood nicknames (Neo and Lemonade) for the restaurant’s name, is keen to create a modern but welcoming restaurant in the area.
Knowing his first aim was to make Neo Lemonade stand out from the stereotypes and expectations of the local area, while also making some noise in an already crowded Melbourne food scene, Steven opted for Francisco Arbelo as Head Chef. Francisco has spent years mastering his skill and technique, working under respected chefs such as Peter Gunn and in well-known venues such as the popular Hunters Kitchen and Bar in St. Kilda. His combination of simple and elegant ingredients combined with some more complex cooking techniques help show off his choices of fresh and local produce.
The menu is sophisticated with an array of sweet and savoury options, which have all been carefully matched to their perfect beverage counterpart. The popular Beetroot Pappardelle is quite literally Spring on a plate, with its homemade beetroot pasta, fresh asparagus and broad beans, with taleggio and walnuts. There’s an interesting sounding Morcilla black pudding dish on the brunch menu, and the red snapper fillet in fish broth from the dinner menu also caught our eye.
There’s no shortage of creativity on the cocktail menu either, with both the Naughty Neo Martini (a great palate cleanser) and the bittersweet Rock and Rose created by venue manager Katie Farley. Opening all day (until 9:30pm) Thursdays and Fridays as well as typical cafe hours Monday-Weds and Sat, Neo Lemonade is finally giving Docklands residents the high quality, close-to-home option they’ve been waiting for.
Address: 850 Collins Street, Docklands
Mon 7am to 4pm
Tue 7am to 4pm
Wed 7am to 4pm
Thu 7am to 9:30pm
Fri 7am to 9:30pm
Sat 9am to 4pm
Parking: There’s plenty of parking around, just check the signs carefully to see if you have to pay as they can be a LITTLE confusing!
Getting here on PT: It’s on the 11 and 48 tram routes, and handily this is still in the Free Tram Zone! Alight at stop D17 (Collins Landing)