Garage Cafe and Restaurant
Berkeley Street (Grattan Street end)
This place is popular with students and staff alike at Melbourne University. It makes for an interesting change of scenery from hours spent buried in textbooks or locked inside laboratories. Specialising in a slew of Indo-Malaysian hawker style cuisine one finds cheap, substantial servings of simple meals with a generous kick of hot and spicy goodness!
What marks this place is that as the name suggests, it is a garage amd a restaurant. As you sit to dine, others may drive in and park a few meters away, so it's not just the fragrant food aromas wafting up your nose. There's also a pool table and couches to sit and laze about if work doesn't seem so compelling post-lunch.
The food was average for the price. I was a little disappointed with my tofu and vegie curry- not enough tofu or green vegies- mostly bamboo shoots. My other friend's thought their meals of beef rendang and noodles were okay. As we were leaving we saw a big display of martabak manis - sweet thick pancakes filled with chocolate and condensed milk- but didn't get a chance to try it out because work beckoned- they did look tasty though!
If car exhausts don't detract you from your dining experience (think of it like al fresco dining) this is worth checking out at least for the novelty.