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August 2018 - Business

02 Aug 2018

Neo Lemonade opens in Docklands

The owners of Neo Lemonade named their new local restaurant after their twin sons, born and bred here in Docklands.

When very young, the boys couldn’t pronounce each other’s names and they called each other Neo and Lemonade.

This modern Australian restaurant focuses on the best cuisine. At the forefront of chef Robert Oey’s creative mind is a focus on pairing healthy seasonal produce with innovative breakfast, lunch and dinner menus.

The manager and front-of-house superstar Katie Farley has also used her creativity to invent a bunch of new cocktails for the drinks menu, although she says creativity at Neo Lemonade goes beyond the palate.

“I want all the staff to be creative and be themselves. It’s how people flourish. You spend so much time at work that this is your family so you’ve got to be happy,” she said.

“I’m a chef. I’ve managed venues before. I’ve opened venues before. I was looking for somewhere I could bring all of that together and this is it.”

“We offer somewhere for the locals – somewhere for families to come in.”

All-day brunch on weekends is one such thing for the locals. “No one in the area does brunch as far as we’re aware,” Katie said.

On the other hand, there’s also corporate catering and function space available.

The venue is coloured with soft tones and greenery, comfortable chairs, bar seats to enjoy the atmosphere of the kitchen and, of course, attention to detail.

Part of the charm is the butterfly pea flower water that turns violet when fresh citrus is added.

There is an abundance of gluten free, vegetarian and organic options. Katie has extensive experience in organic food and all protein is ethically sourced.

Cocktail highlights:

Marshmallow: Candy vodka/ pomegranate seeds/ lemon/ bubbles/ foam.

Sawatdii: Tequila/ lemongrass/ chilli/ ginger/ lime/ agave/ cilantro.

Special menu items:


Black Mamba: Morcilla black pudding/ Holly crumpet/ oyster mushroom/ crumbed egg/ charcoal aioli.

Baked eggs: Slow cooked cannellini beans/ smoked eggplant/ grilled zucchini/ roasted peppers/ Persian feta/ free range egg/ artisan bread.


Spiced lamb: Spiced coffee braised lamb shoulder/ cous cous salsa/ charred onion/ chimichurri.

Lost bird: Buttermilk crispy spiced chicken/ soft roll/ jungle slaw/ gochujang mayo/ melted cheese/ hand cut fries.


Specialty salad bowls using seasonal protein and produce: Neo bowl, winter bowl, black bowl.

Blue swimmer crab: Hand-picked crab/ shiitake mushrooms/ cherry tomato/ angel hair pasta

Braised free range beef ragout.


Freshly shucked oysters to enjoy with a glass of wine or champagne.

Aubergine hill: Thinly sliced eggplant/ truffle/ mozzarella/ basil/ toasted walnuts/ passata.

Rib eye steak.

Fregola Salsicca: freshly made sausages / fregola/ roasted cauliflower/ salted prawns/ chili/ sugo.

Merchant St (near Collins St), Docklands, Ph: 9620 7030

Instagram and Facebook: Neolemonade Web:

Melbourne Cellar Door

Melbourne Cellar Door is the newest addition to South Wharf.

Brothers and owners Mark and Tony Pendreich have run the Valley Cellardoor in Moonee Ponds for eight years and were scouting locations for a new venue when they saw an opportunity.

“We were looking for somewhere south of where we are in Moonee Ponds. We both grew up in Aspendale and that’s where my brother still is, so we were looking for somewhere from Aspendale through to the city,” Mark said.

“We went to the footy this time last year at Etihad. We left there at 6pm and we wanted to drink some decent wines before we went to dinner. We couldn’t think of anywhere we could go to have a choice of a range of wines that wasn’t at restaurant prices.”

This is what the Melbourne Cellar Door model provides: “We don’t work on restaurant mark-ups here. If you have a look around you’ll see that we have a retail price and then we just add $20 on top of a retail price to drink it here.”

As you might have noticed, Melbourne Cellar Door has an extensive focus on wine. Mark is a trained sommelier who worked in London for eight years for the likes of Sir Terence Conran and Marco Pierre White.

Tony’s expertise is on the beer side of things. Together, the brothers present the largest range of wine and beer in the Docklands precinct for drinking in or taking home.

“We have a range of wines that we rotate. My brother chooses beers from a lot of small breweries, there are a lot of wineries we’ve had relationships with for 10 years,” Mark said.

Offerings also include back vintages and museum stock and a wine-knowledgeable team of staff.

The venue is spacious, even with hundreds of wine bottles stocked on the walls. There’s multiple function spaces available for between 30 and 400 people, including the barrel room with AV equipment and speakers.

There are also special team-building events offered using wine/beer and food matching, which can even be offered in Mandarin if required.

The kitchen dishes out pizzas, platters, tacos, artisan cheese and charcuterie.

There are 70 wines by the glass, and 600-700 wines to choose from.

25 Dukes Walk, South Wharf. Phone: 9682 7463. Email: (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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