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Alternative Drinks in Melbourne

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by Mon's Adventure (subscribe)
Documenting roadtrip adventures and foodie outings. See more at monsadventure.com!
Published February 25th 2015
Melbourne is always ahead of the latest trends, so it makes sense that if you don't love coffee as much as the rest of the city, then there's still many alternatives you can sip down with your brunch or dinner.

Here are a few of my favourites:

1. MOCKTAILS

For the designated driver or the person who can't handle alcohol well at all - mocktails are a safe bet.

The problem is, they are often not as delicious and innovative as those creative cocktails that your friends are having.

Red Spice Road: 27 Mckillop St or 37 Artemis Lane, Melbourne CBD
One of the best places to dine and have a mocktail is Red Spice Road. Their previous lychee mocktail exhibited their modern Asian influence perfectly.

Red Spice Road
From their former mocktail menu, featuring lychee and pineapple


I think they've updated their menu now so it lists new mocktails, such as the Clementine: fresh mandarin and juice, mint, lime, built over ice with grapefruit bitters, topped with soda ($9.50), which sounds just as interesting as ever!

Naked for Satan: 285 Brunswick St, Fitzroy
If you haven't graced the wonders of Naked for Satan, then you've been missing out. They do some excellent pinxtos, little Spanish tapas with toppings on bread, but they are also a popular bar on Brunswick St.

If you ask for a mocktail, they seem to have a standard drink that they make, which perhaps tasted even better than our cocktails! It's fruity but flavoursome, not just like a thoughtless mix of sodas. Just do yourself a favour and tell them to make you one!

Tazio Birraria Pizzeria & Cucina: 66 Flinders Lane, Melbourne CBD
Tazio also serves a good selection of mocktails with some impressive names, such as a no-jito. The flavours are inspired by popular cocktails but just without the alcohol to ensure you don't feel like you're missing out!

Tazio
Safe Sex on the Beach and a No-jito


2. ICED TEA

Now I'm always a little disappointed when a restaurant serves me a Lipton iced tea from a bottle instead of a homemade one. It's rare, but when you do find home made ones, they use some unique flavours and combinations.

Those Girls Iced Tea: various locations

Night Market
Homemade Iced Tea stand


One place where you can find some different flavours is the Those Girls stand at Queen Victoria Market. They have exciting flavours, such as vanilla-apple and blueberry-mint ,and present it in an amazingly cute way.

Those Girls Iced Teas
Strawberry and Rosemary - a delicious combination


I had the strawberry and rosemary, which seemed to be a crowd favourite!

Suda: 550 Lonsdale St, Melbourne CBD
Suda is a very modern Korean restaurant, serving Korean food with a twist. With items such as bulgogi pasta on the menu, it makes it clear it is not your typical restaurant.

Suda
Plum and mint iced tea


To add to this, they have some interesting drinks on offer (besides the sangria!) This includes some home made iced teas. My first visit, I tried the plum and mint, and after a bit of a stir (as they brew it earlier in the day) the flavours mixed perfectly and provided a cool drink to have alongside any spicy dishes.

Lolo & Wren: 484 Albion St, Brunswick West
When I dropped by Lolo and Wren, my initial intention was to have a coffee as I waited for a friend.

However I was intrigued by the Geisha Cascara iced tea on offer and decided to try this instead. The term geisha is often used in relation to coffee beans but not tea.

Lolo and Wren
Geisha Cascara Iced Tea


This was made with the often discarded peel of a coffee cherry and it provided a lightly fruity flavour.

It's a perfect and unique beverage to have in place of your coffee.

3. GULAMAN

Lasang Pinoy: 12 Victoria Square, St Albans.
You don't come across Filipino food in Melbourne often. But when you do, you'll find their food, drink and desserts are all a little bit different to most Asian cuisines.

Gulaman
Two types of gulaman at the top


Their popular drink might remind you of bubble tea with their jelly pieces and sometimes pearls, but the jelly is actually made out of agar (processed seaweed). They are usually mixed with a coconut milky or sugary liquid to make this popular Filipino beverage.

The pictured drinks are from the annual Philippine Fiesta Melbourne but you can also get them from local Filipino restaurants such as Lasang Pinoy.


4. LEMONADE

Grub Food Van: 87-89 Moor St, Fitzroy
It seems a reoccurring trend but mint seems to be featured in many drinks, which I'm not complaining about, because I enjoy that freshness.

Grub Food Van
Blood orange mint lemonade


I found a particularly unique version of lemonade using mint and blood orange at Grub Food Van, a cafe with quirky features such as a table tennis table and an Airstream van.
The lemonade was perfect for a sunny day.

Po' Boy Quarter: 295 Smith St, Fitzroy
Last up, another uncommon lemonade can be found at Po' Boy Quarter in Fitzroy, related to the popular Gumbo Kitchen, which serves New Orleans inspired food.

Po Boy Quarter
New Orleans inspired lemonade


It's homemade and pink but has a little bit more of a bitter edge. It wasn't my thing but it could definitely be yours!

What other unique, non-alcoholic drinks have you enjoyed in Melbourne?

*Please keep in mind that some of these drinks may be seasonal and may not be regular menu items. Please check with the restaurants if you're really curious!
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Why? To find a range of beverages you can try if you don't like alcohol or coffee
Where: All across Melbourne
Cost: $4-$9.50
Your Comment
Thanks Mon for the great review! Glad you enjoyed our homemade recipes and looking forward to reading more of your adventures
Elena & Lauren
"Those Girls Iced Tea"
xox
by those (score: 0|4) 846 days ago
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