your guide to the best meals for all budgets


One of the best things about the Australian Grand Slam tennis tournament is that you don’t need deep pockets to eat well.

At this year’s Australian Open, the whole of Melbourne Park is your oyster, with the return of the hugely popular land pass giving you access to dozens of bars and restaurants, outdoor courts and even a beach. artificial.

Attendance may be capped, but the 2022 program is full and ambitious.

Find fish and chips, beach tennis, DJs, Piper-Heidsieck champagne, cabanas and more at the brand new Beach Club, created with 2500 square meters of sand above what is normally a parking lot. Albert Park’s new restaurant Pipi’s Kiosk is making headlines, offering “seaside classics with a twist,” says chef Jordan Clay.

On Grand Slam Oval, long-time favorites Gingerboy and Longrain will share space with Nico’s sandwiches.

Elsewhere, debutants Big Esso and Robata will cause a stir; and champagne, coffee and G&Ts will flow late into the night.

Nornie Bero’s Big Esso will be the first Indigenous-owned restaurant at the Australian Open. Photo: Supplied

This year’s event features Aboriginal business Big Esso – the second restaurant for Torres Strait Islander Nornie Bero – which opened in Federation Square in July. Now Bero can show the food and culture of his ancestors on the world stage.

To be part of the Open is an incredible achievement. “I couldn’t have asked for a better start to the year,” she said.

Through a menu of playful snacks, she will highlight the abundance of ingredients native to Australia that are often overlooked. The loaded fries contain yams while the crispy fried crocodile is a riff on the salt and pepper squid.

The Open’s range of food, mainly in Melbourne, is part of an effort to support restaurants after two nightmarish years, says Fern Barrett, Tennis Australia’s head of food, premium experiences and grounds.

The backstreets neighborhood of Grand Slam Oval reflects a day wandering the CBD, with cafes and a pop-up gallery displaying vintage tennis posters next to well-known restaurants.

Kids (and by default, their parents) are satisfied with a $5 ticket that includes access to a kiddie playground, water play area, zip line, and rock climbing wall, plus healthy snacks that aren’t the hot dogs and fries of most events.

Brand ambassadors Maria Thattil (left) and Olympia Valance open the Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Bar in style.

Brand ambassadors Maria Thattil (left) and Olympia Valance open the Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Bar in style. Photo: Eddie Jim

The Australian Open at Melbourne Park runs from January 17-30. Ground passes start at $49. See

Six aces eat at the Australian Open

Pipi's Kiosk fish burger, part of the Australian Open 2022 food. Shots provided for single use as part of the AO 2022 food roundup. For great food, 12 January 2022

Pipi’s fish burger with crushed edamame. Photo: Supplied

Pee Kiosk, beach house

What: Seafood and other dishes you would like to eat by the sea or, in this case, a beach club right in the middle of Australia’s biggest tennis tournament.

Do not miss the dishes: Fish and chips, a fish burger with smashed edamame and an original version of potato cake are essential, but save room for the tomato and Vegemite flatbread, a creation of Canadian chef Jordan Clay inspired by her first experiences with our national spread. “The umami of tomato and Vegemite is pure synergy,” he says.

Prices: $9-$24.50

Good for: A champagne chat between matches in an unexpected setting.

Kangaroo Snack Pack is one of the dishes Big Esso is serving at the 2022 Australian Open. Big Esso is an Indigenous-owned company that showcases ingredients native to Australia.  Shots provided for single use as part of the AO 2022 food roundup. For good food, January 12, 2022

The Big Esso Kangaroo Snack Pack. Photo: Supplied

Big Esso, Western Courts

What: Big flavors at the Open’s most eye-catching restaurant. The first Aboriginal-owned company to participate in the event, Big Esso will shake up your ideas about Australian snacks.

Do not miss the dishes: Crocodile Saltbush and Pepperberry for a fried and crispy quality. Kangaroo tail snack pack, a glorious mix of Burgundy-style kangaroo stew with hot chips – what’s not to love?

Prices: $11-$23

Good for: A true Aussie dining experience: bring your non-Australian friends or expand your own horizons.

Outdoor restaurants at the Grand Slam oval at the AO.  14 January 2022. The Goodfood Age.  Pictured: Eddie Jim.

Hawkers Alley offers snacks from a selection of mod-Asian CBD restaurants. Photo: Eddie Jim

Hawkers Alley, Grand Slam oval

What: Top-notch snacks with an Asian twist from enduring favorites Lucy Liu, Longrain and Gingerboy, plus newcomer Robata, a specialist in charcoal-grilled Japanese cuisine.

Do not miss the dishes: Gingerboy’s hot dog with pork sausage, kimchi and chili jam is a feisty take on a favorite sporting event. Robata’s chicken thigh yakitori equals hand food at its finest.

Prices: $11.50-$19.50

Good for: Fun festival food you can eat standing up with friends.

Penfolds Restaurant at the Grand Slam Oval at the AO.  14 January 2022. The Goodfood Age.  Pictured: Eddie Jim.

Putting the finishing touches on Penfolds restaurant. Photo: Eddie Jim

Penfolds Restaurant, Centerpiece

What: Elevated dining in a futuristic space with chrome accents, while next to the restaurant is Max’s Rosé Bar, an area of ​​pastel pink upholstery, soft curves and, yes, rosé.

Do not miss the dishes: The menu changes between the first and second week, but the Eton mess, aged prime rib and rose panna cotta look promising, followed by a rose-hued cocktail at Max’s.

Prices: From $355 for four courses and paired wines (reservations encouraged)

Good for: Those who feel like spending money or doing photo shoots for their feed.

Europa Lane, Grand Slam oval

What: Stalactites’ gyroscope masters have won over many visiting tennis players. This year they’re in the thick of the action, with Nico’s Sandwich Deli, known for its expertly executed classic sandwiches.

Don’t miss the dishes: Nico’s Cubano is a serious sanga that needs an athletic appetite. Vegetarians can bypass the mushroom melt, while souva lovers will gravitate to the chicken gyros at Stalactites.

Prices: $17.50-$18.50

Good for: Tsitsipas fans and those in need of some serious refueling before a sleepless night.

Oakberry, beach house

What: Bowls featuring wellness favorites like chia, coconut, blueberries and more, from Brazilian chain Oakberry, which counts doubles player Bruno Soares among its investors. Morning fuel will be available for anyone doing a movement class at 8am.

Do not miss the dishes: The Love All bowl, filled with kiwi, blueberries, honey, oats, cocoa nibs and plain yogurt.

Prices: $17

Good for: Your good deed of the day.

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