Ruby Dining

Two Melbourne restaurant groups have joined forces to create this all-day brasserie in the CBD.
Andrew Zuccala
Published on July 03, 2024


Valerie Fong and Randy Dhamanhuri from Operator Venues (Operator25Middletown, Makan, Operator Diner and Operator San) know a thing or two about running cafes and nailing Melbourne breakfasts. And James Cornwall from Tenable Dining (Bonny Fitzroy, Young Hearts and Seville Estate) has the after-dark drinking and dining trade sorted.

And now, by joining forces to create Ruby Dining, they've got a single venue that has you covered from breakfast all the way through to late-night cocktails.

Ruby Dining in Melbourne's CBD

The whole vibe here is inspired by theatre-district brasseries in London and New York, so you can expect a playful yet still sophisticated venue that's set up for just about anyone to enjoy.

For breakfast, you'll find the same contemporary Australian brunch fare that the Operator venues are so loved for, but with more French sensibilities — there's a mean croque madame, a luxe shokupan french toast and brown butter madeleines topped with whipped goat cheese and honey that are baked to order.

Ruby Dining in Melbourne's CBD

When lunch and dinner service roll around, Cornwall's cooking takes centre stage. His interpretation of the modern brasserie sees him showcase great technique — as well as top-notch local produce — without being overly ostentatious. Dishes aren't overly complicated, devilishly small or overpriced. Nonetheless, he is still having plenty of fun with the menu.

You've got classics like steak frites, onion tart, and ricotta and pistachio ravioli, plus more playful eats like the one-bite caesar salad and potato cannoli with smoked onion dip. The aforementioned freshly baked madeleines also feature on the lunch and dinner menu, so there's no need to worry about missing out if you're there after brekkie.

Ruby Dining in Melbourne's CBD

You'll be tucking into all of this within chic surrounds designed by We Are Humble (Kaiju CantinaNo. 100 Flinders LaneCoConspirators BrewpubCode Black Brunswick, Good Measure). The designers have kept some of the building's original features, including the bar, the exposed waffle slab above it and the mirror-panelled walls, while adding splashes of ruby red throughout the dining room and bar. Soft curved frames, Thonet bistro chairs and rich brown upholstery complete the brasserie fitout.

When spending time at Ruby, you could easily forget you're in Australia, but perhaps somewhere in London, New York or Paris. But these Melbourne hospo legends have made sure to weave plenty of local touches throughout the whole experience — it still has that Melbourne je ne sais quoi.

Ruby Dining in Melbourne's CBD

Images: Jana Langhorst


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