Arguably the beating tourism heart of the Bass Coast Shire, Inverloch is a popular Victorian holiday destination. And it’s easy to see why.
Situated a scenic 1 hr 45mins drive from Melbourne on a gorgeous piece of coastline, Inverloch offers something for everyone. Andersons Inlet is a winner for families with the shallow estuary a great place for kids learning to swim. Meanwhile, Inverloch Surf Beach attracts those who want to try their hand at riding some waves.
Aside from in-water activities, this attractive town has some fabulous coastal walks and is a local mecca for boating and fishing enthusiasts.
If you’re looking to stay in the town, Inverloch accommodation is plentiful and varied. It ranges from holiday homes, to the Inverloch foreshore camping ground, the BIG4 Ingenia Holidays Inverloch and the RACV Inverloch Resort.
Of course, as both a thriving country town and busy beachside holiday spot, Inverloch has a wide selection of places to eat.
But where is the best place for fish and chips? Who does the finest coffee? And if you fancy a a decadent brunch, what are your options?
Well, wonder no more. Here is our guide to the best restaurants in Inverloch.
Location: 1 Abeckett St, Inverloch, VIC 3996 Ph: (03) 5674 1432
Affectionately known as the Invy Espy Hotel – the Invy and The Espy – if you’re a frequent visitor to this part of the Bass Coast, the chances are that you’ve dined here one time or another.
Ideally placed in the centre of the town, it’s a pub of many parts. It’s this versatility that makes it one of the top restaurants in Inverloch.
Firstly, there’s the Bistro. The menu is a greatest hits of pub grub favourites. Open with a Starter of Lemon Pepper Calamari ($18) with Lemon & Citrus Aioli and follow with the Grilled Lamb Cutlets ($36) served with Ratatouille Vegetables & Red Wine Jus. Or maybe you prefer the Chicken Parmigiana ($29) accompanied by Steak Cut Chips & Dressed Salad?
Conveniently, this part of The Espy also has a Children’s Play Area. So yes. It’s a real winner with families.
Lastly, there are a number of bench-style tables outside the front of the ‘Hotel as well. As you can imagine, these are a great place to sit, have a drink and enjoy a Gippsland Beef Burger ($26) from indoors on a balmy afternoon. Just make sure you book ahead as its one of the most popular restaurants in Inverloch.
If you find yourself on the ‘Peninsula, see our pick of the Best Restaurants in Mornington
The Sports Bar
Complete with a TAB, screens and a pool table, this is the place to meet up with a few mates for a beer or 2 in the evening.
It’s also where the youngsters hang out during the summer months and can have quite a buzz. Especially, when a big sporting event is being shown.
The Captain’s Lounge
This used to be a more upmarket restaurant. However, these days the area above the main Bistro and Bar is given over to Functions & Events.
If you’re organising a celebration of some kind, the team at The Invy can organise a catering package for you.
Apart from a large dining room, the Captain’s Lounge also has an outdoor balcony, ideal the soaking up the sun.
If you head to the other side of the coast from Melbourne, check out our Best Restaurants in Geelong.
Location: 17a Bear St, Inverloch, VIC 3996 Ph: 0459 635 712
The charmingly named Bluette on Bear is the first of our recommended Inverloch cafes.
Tucked away in a junction in a rather unexciting industrial area away from the beach, sits Bluette on Bear. A real gem of a coffee shop and more.
From Beach Towels, to Picnic Baskets and Sun Shades, we’ve got them all! Click here for the latest styles at competitive prices.
Let’s begin by talking about the coffee – and food.
As a confessed glutton who lives not that far from Richmond, it warms my heart to find a regional cafe that is serious enough but their coffee to use Maker Coffee Melbourne beans. These folks know what they are doing and little touches like this show how far Inverloch (and other coastal towns) have come in terms of food and drinks.
Then there’s the food. Firstly, this already pretty excellent cafe has recently gained a new Head Chef and part owner. Luckily, John is a Melbourne trained chef who made the sea change to Inverloch a couple of years ago and decided to stay. Noteworthy inclusions under his leadership include Burger Nights on Fridays. Offerings include a Gippsland Beef Burger complete with Lettuce, Tomato, Cheddar Cheese, House Made Pickles & Chef Johnny’s Special Sauce, w/ Chips. And a ‘Famous’ Soda Drink. All for $25.
But there’s more to life than Burger Night. Apparently.
If you fancy a Brunch that dares on the side originality, give the Grilled Sourdough with Macadamia Cream, Pickled Local & Wattle Bark Oyster Mushrooms & Crispy Jerusalem Artichokes a go? But if that’s not your thing, no worries. Bluette on Bear has plenty of other options, including some truly stunning Cakes.
And then there’s the other arm of the Cafe Bluette on Bear actually lies in a burgeoning artists’ community. Tootle through to the back of the cafe and you’ll find a shop filled with hand made jewelry, locally crafted candles, artisan homewares and more.
In some ways, it’s the perfect balance. A lovely, relaxed meal and then a browse around an arts-based shop supporting local creators. What more do you need?
Check it out. It’s one of the top restaurants in Inverloch.
Location: 9 Abeckett St, Inverloch, VIC 3996
The next Inverloch cafe on our guide is the light and airy Silky Inverloch. Ideally located halfway up Abeckett Street, this is a fab spot for a refuel after an early morning swim.
Open from 7.30am until 3pm, Silky offers an All Day Breakfast and some of the best coffee in town. Honestly, after a few hours catching waves, what could be more satisfying than a plate of Spicy Baked Eggs ($23)? This filling bowl of Mixed Beans with Chilli Tomato Relish and Shaved Cheese comes with Toasted Sourdough. Yum.
Alternatively, why not give the Mushroom Casserole ($24) a go? Earthy, rich and creamy, this symphony of fungi is finished with melted Cheese and Poached Eggs. All you need is a chunk of Sourdough to mop all the goodness up.
And then there’s the show-stopping Chilli Prawn Scramble Croissant ($23)..!
As I said at the start, the locals have already realised that the folks at Silky know their coffee beans. Be prepared to line up on busy mornings for your Skinny Latte. However, it’s not only the coffee that’s got a following. The cafe also stocks Kombucha, made locally in a range of enticing flavours including Strawberry & Basil.
With great food and artisan drinks, Silky is another of the best restaurants in Inverloch.
Location: 5 Lindsey Cl, Inverloch, VIC 3996 Ph: 0493 136 351
On your first visit to Pearl Inverloch, you might worry that you’re heading in the wrong direction. For this Modern Asian eatery is hidden away at the end of a distinctly residential road, bang next door to the Broadbeach Health Club. But don’t be put off. Follow the instructions and you’ll find yourself at one of the finest restaurants in Inverloch.
The uncluttered interior has a soothing palette of charcoals, and olive greens, offset by wooden furniture. However, the real plum spot is on the deck outside. Here you can sip a chilled beer or a spritely glass of bubbles after a hard day on the beach.
The food leans towards Asian fusion, though Malaysian cuisine is particularly well-represented. Amongst the Entrees, the Beef Rendang Spring Roll ($14) – complete with Mint Yoghurt Dipping Sauce & Coconut Sambal ticks all the right boxes for those seeking something unusual, but really tasty. And who can resist Crispy Fried School Prawns ($22) with Boom Boom Mayo, Sesame Crumb & Bonito Flakes? Certainly not us.
For the Mains, the Thai Red Curry Duck with Choy Sum & Roasted Peanuts ($37) is rich and fragrant. Fortunately, there’s a substantial dish for plant-based diners too. The Cauliflower Steak ($37) is a filling bowlful with Sweet Potato, Eggplant, Coconut Curry & Kaffir Lime.
If you have room for Dessert, give the Pandan Crepe ($10) a go. Served with Fresh Coconut, Palm Sugar Custard & White Chocolate, it’s the perfect finish to a delicious meal.
Just remember to book. With it’s fabulous, friendly staff and great food, Pearl Inverloch is already one of the top restaurants in town.
If you have a passion for Malaysian food with a Japanese twist, or Chinese given a Korean kick, see our guide to the Best Asian Fusion Restaurants in Melbourne
Location: 64 Cashin St, Inverloch, VIC 3996 Ph: (03) 5606 8128
What a brilliant idea.
Dirty Three Wines takes the concept of a traditional winery cellar door and rips up the rule book in the best possible way.
Rather than a statement restaurant, or an architecturally striking winery building, over-looking rows of vines, this cellar door sits in amongst the workshops and sheds of an industrial estate. At first, this might seem like madness, but having visited it, we think it’s genius.
You see rather than trying to lure the potential wine-buying market of Inverloch out to a remote winery, Dirty Three Wines have taken their product to the people. And both the local residents and visiting holiday-makers are very thankful that they have.
Because this cellar door is an absolute gem of a spot to spend a lazy afternoon.
We last dropped by on a particularly chilly Sunday. No problem. Once through the doors of Dirty Three Wines we were cocooned in warmth and the welcoming aromas of wine and food. To say that the interior of this place is surprisingly inviting is an understatement. Tables and chairs for small groups and large await customers. There’s a wood burner blazing in a corner, kids playing boards games to one side and a chic black bar, behind which hangs a chalkboard map of the 3 patches of dirt that produce their wines.
Clearly, sampling the wonderful Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and more of Dirty Three Wines is the reason why most punters pop by. And smartly, the bar staff are more than happy to talk you through their bottles and make suggestions for a Tasting Wine Flight ($20).
But that isn’t all that’s on offer. The Margarita Focaccia ($14) is a snackable take on a pizza and the Duck & Prune Terrine ($27) is delicious spread on Sourdough and topped with Onion & Red Wine Marmalade and Cornichons.
Obviously, it’s practically illegal to serve wine in Australia without a cheese board of some description. Happily, the crew at Dirty Three Wines know the rules and put together a superior Cheese & Salumi Plate ($45). Including 3 Gippsland Cheeses & locally made Salumi, as well as Sourdough, Crackers, Fruits, Nuts and those Cornichons, it’s really very good.
If you make your way here come summer, you’ll find the outdoor area around the cellar door packed with people eating and drinking. And you may even be fortunate enough to find a musician or 2 playing to entertain customers whilst they chill in the shade.
Honestly, when you’ve had enough of the beach, what more could you want? No wonder Dirty Three Wines is one of the top restaurants in Inverloch.
If you love and afternoon roaming vineyards and eating good food, see our review of Quarters at Hubert Estate
Location: 1/23 Abeckett St, Inverloch, VIC 3996 Ph: (03) 5674 3444
An authentic Japanese restaurant in a seaside town is a rare thing, but Tomo’s Japanese Inverloch is one such find.
Founded by ex-Ocha Kew chef Tomo Ezaki back in 2007, this petit dining room with its charming back courtyard is one of the most popular restaurants in Inverloch come summer. So much so that Eatability recommends booking well in advance if you hope to eat in.
And eating in is a delight. The interior design is minimal and light, the service gently attentive and the food a real treat.
The Japanese are rightly revered fr their steel. And in particular, their fine knives. Whether you need a set of Steak Knives or a good Paring Knife to prepare food with, we’ve got you covered. Click here for more information and prices.
Lunch and Dinner are the 2 big events here. Personally, we love the evening menu when we can kick back with a Kirin Beer ($12) or sample a Sake or 3.
We love a kitchen that plays to the home crowd and so the Inverloch Roll aways makes it onto our order. Featuring Fresh Tuna, Prawns, Avocado and Cucumber in Rice topped with Tobiko ($24), it’s fresh and bright. Another winner is the Gipps Roll which is an inventive combination of Fresh King Fish, Prawn, Cucumber and Avo rolled in Mayo and Cheese ($22). It might sound strange, but just us – it’s delicious.
Tomo’s Japanese does 3 types of Gyoza (4 pcs $16), including a vegan option. For the veggie-loving poultry-eaters, the Dengaku ($24) is a must. This is a silky smooth half of Eggplant, crowned with minced Chicken and a fabulously umami-rich Miso Paste.
For Mains, there is a selection of Tempura plates as well as Teriyaki with proteins of your choice. Other go-tos are the Sansho Pepper Lamb (2pcs $29.50) – a tasty platter of spiced Lamb Cutlets, Wasabi Mash & Fried Vegetables, and the Miso Marinated Swordfish ($36). It’s worth mentioning that seasonality is important to the crew at Tomo’s and so there is a Specials Board which changes to reflect what’s best at the time.
Lastly, as indicated above, this is a great spot to dine if you like a Japanese libation. However, it not just Japanese Beer and Spirits. The bar also stocks a number of wines and makes a point of championing Gippsland drops.
All-in-all, Tomo’s Japanese is a real gem.
For another Japanese restaurants that is totally worth the drive, see our piece on Kadota Restaurant – Daylesford.
Editor’s Note: We are currently updating our page on Inverloch. Please come back soon and see which restaurants, cafes and bars have been added to our guide.