We had an international guest over from Canada so we decided to take her to the well known Lygon Street precinct. I haven't been to Lygon Street for years but it felt much the same as I remembered it. We were a group of six girls out on the town. Our first task was to find parking and then to prowl Lygon Street, looking for a suitable restaurant.
We were briefed by one of our number that we weren't to say anything to the restaurateurs as they approached us but to let them talk as they would make us offerings to entice us to stay. I was amazed that as we passed each restaurant that we were offered different enticements to stay. This is certainly a very competitive restaurant area. In the end we settled on two glasses of our choice of wine from the menu and a free bruschetta entrée at Sale E Pepe Italian Restaurant.
There was plenty of seating inside but we decided to eat outside under the tarpaulin set up on the sidewalk that had outside heaters - after all, our Canadian friend really needed to experience the true feel of the Lygon Street experience. We all ordered various plates of pasta. They weren't spectacular but they were quite nice. The biggest draw back was that one of the guests at the nearby tables was smoking which was a real shame as it does interfere with the dinning experience.
Jimmy Castano outside Sale E Pepe Italian Restaurant
For entertainment, singer song writer Jimmy Castano turned up and played his guitar for us, swivelling his hips in Elvis type movements. It was a lot fun and a great laugh.
Booking. We didn't book, as half the experience is walking along and choosing the restaurant.
Getting there. It is possible to take a tram from the middle of city if you are arriving by train, just watch the time as you need to back on the rail system before it shuts down for the night
Parking. There was free parking in the side streets. Parking on Lygon Street is a bit more difficult and the drivers can be quite impatient if you have problems trying to squeeze your car into a tight spot.
Disabled Access friendly. There isn't much room on the side walk between the outside tables and chairs and the shop front and the foot traffic can be quite heavy, but we didn't go inside the restaurant so I can't comment. The tables and chairs were also quite close together but once you've manoeuvred into place it should be OK.
Kid friendly. Yes, although you'd need to be sure that they wouldn't run out on the road. We didn't see any kids dinning but it was quite late and quite cold if you weren't sitting directly under the heaters.