Izzy’s 21st Birthday Party In Melbourne (and lots of good eating)

It’s not every day that parents get to host their daughter’s 21st birthday party.  We decided on a date a week earlier than your October 15th birthday, so we could celebrate during the school holidays.

First stop from the airport: Cafe Lua. We met you at your local for toast and coffee before you hurried off to your job around the corner.

From your brief, Little C produced your cute jewelled invitation . Writing out addresses, I was amazed to realise what a village of friends you live with in Carlton. You all seem to live within a stone’s throw of each other. It is so nice!

It felt like a perfect fit to be able to host your party at Najla’s. It is after all, your favourite type of food: Mediterranean mezze…….mmm. Little C’s godmother Najla is an amazing cook, and she certainly delighted everyone on the night with platters of delicious morsels.

It was pretty perfect ending the night with baby cupcakes, sprinkled with glitter. The Cupcake Queens in Albert Park did a very nice job, and even managed to satisfy our celiac guests.

Elsewhere in Melbourne, we ate very well as usual.  It has been a long time since we’ve stayed at our old favourite, The Prince Hotel: it is a pleasure to see that even though it has new owners, the  ambience is still the same, and certainly the food is still amazing. We had a great room  overlooking Catani Gardens and the bay beyond. Even though it was such a busy few days, I still managed to snatch a few moments on that balcony.

Out of Circa, the restaurant at The Prince, your dad and I started off our busy days with an amazing breakfast. We tried everything on the menu over the few days we stayed. Here are some of my favourites:

Vietnamese pork belly with egg and fragrant herbs.

Smoked Tassie trout with corn bread and grilled asparagus.

Poached eggs over lentils and grilled ciabatta with spicy sausage.

We also dropped in on Nick at Cafe Gaia in Avoca Street. His food is consistently great: fresh, innovative and so appealing on the plate.  Sitting on the front deck under a heritage listed Allamanda vine, it was magical, as always. J and I ate the free range chicken salad, with ribbons of yellow and bright green courgette, and chewy bits of grain. The dressing was light and mild, perfect for summer days. And you can’t get a better coffee anywhere else really, can you. The menu is filled with fantastic things to eat and drink- from hearty and chunky to snacky and brunchy. Never know what to order when we come here-sigh!

The sunsets from the balcony at The Prince of Wales Hotel in St. Kilda, after glorious sunny days, were beautiful.  We are now back home in Sydney with memories of a great party.  You have a fantastic group of friends, Izzy.  We loved having an opportunity to chat with most of them on Thursday night. I hope your twenty-first year is memorable like your party: filled with friends, family, good food and music, happy times, and surrounded by so many people who love you and care for you. Happy Twenty-first Birthday, my dear Belvedere. You’ve come a long way, baby!

4 thoughts on “Izzy’s 21st Birthday Party In Melbourne (and lots of good eating)

  1. what a fantastic entry , I want to go to Melbourne to follow in your footsteps!and. Have the same menus as at Izzy’s birthday! and the breakfasts are all moth watering- worth staying the week! looking forward to next week’sposting from Sydney

    Thank you,

    Tina I had some problems ,replying to you on what I thought was my address so I have re registered with Jouhn’s details!

  2. What a milestone and to think Isabel is 21 when you are back “home” after all those years away. Tell C I love the invitation….St Kilda was once our old stomping ground….thinking of you all. x

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