There was once, ages ago, I remember myself watching a travelogue introducing a market in Australia. I had no idea what travel program it was, neither the city nor the name of the market. But I did somehow link Victoria to it. All I had in me was how great this place was! Great ambience, fresh food, shopping, eating I promise myself to be there one day. After some research and looking at the markets in Down Under, I believe Queen Vics to be the one and from then onward, I have always been looking forward to this day. On a bright bustling sat morning, after a short tram ride, I was finally here with the recognisable yellow facade building welcoming you.
Just to share a bit, Queen Victoria Market has a tram stop right outside the market on Victoria Street, duh, it’s also within the free tram zone!!! Be prepared for crowd on the weekends, definitely, after all besides the usual tourist, you gotta face the locals whom came to get the fresh food. According to my friend whom migrated to Melbourne, prices in Queen Vics are the cheapest they can get! Besides it makes a perfect location for a lazy sat, sun morning for grabbing necessities. Right before I get started on my tour through the market here is a little info to take note. The market is close on Mon and Wed, open from 6am to 2pm on Tues, Thurs, till 5pm on Fri, 3pm on Sat and 4pm on Sun. Quirky, funny souvenirs and Australian typical stuff are much more affordable here than central Melbourne. And the greatest of all, it is only a stone throw from the city. The market has cheaper rates for parking on the non peak hours but I will definitely recommend the tram though. The market is generally separated into Fresh Produce, Deli, General Goods and Food Court.
When you enter the first section would be part of the Fresh Produce, Meat & Fish Hall. Contrasting to the wet and slimy market we have, Queen Vic is clean and well maintained! A great variety cuts of meat and fish are available. After all Australia is surrounded by oceans. Some of the meats are too extreme for me, such as dog, rabbit and crocodile. I would just love shopping here and then cook myself a great meal on the weekends. Honestly I just find their stuff so fresh and nice. I simply love shopping at markets overseas, besides seeing new products, this is as real as you can get in the local people lives. I COULD DO A LEGIT BBQ PARTY HERE!
Next to the Meat & Fish Hall was the Vegetable portion and the Deli Hall. I shall first cover the Deli Hall since I was famished. Anw, this place is perfect for a great “walking breakfast”. Here are some of the stalls you gotta visit, first is the Borek, I am sure you will find the stall, cause there is always people queuing. What I would recommend is the Cheese and Spinach Borek which is outstanding. Expect cheesy hot and aromatic all in a bite. It cost 3AUD. Just remember to eat it while hot and the portion is quite huge. It will be wise to share as it is quite filling. There is quite a lot of stalls selling Borek, but remember to get it only from the one and only. It is named Borek with a “Made fresh on Premise” written on the sign too.
Another must get is the Bratwurst, these were just flying off the grill, piping hot. One of the stall even provide huge bite size sampling portion, these taste great. I will recommend the spicy one as the punch they give is really satisfying. Together with the bun, some sweet onions, delicious! It cost around 5-6AUD, depending on the topping and if you want it in a cup or bun. The people here are also very friendly!
The last stall that I would recommend would be this poultry stall located on the corner, it is right opposite the bratwurst stall, I was there just nice when the staff were getting the food right out of the oven, I couldn’t help but order some of it. Besides that the wings and the ribs look great too. I got a quarter of the lemon grilled chicken and also a side of the chips. It cost 9AUD, definitely worthy. The chicken and chips came with a thick brown sauce and you could also ask for chicken salt to be sprinkled on the chips and the chicken. I would recommend not to have the chilli as it is of a weird taste. The chips were thick and handmade, once dunk into the sauce, heavenly. Right outside the deli hall are some seats, you could get all the food and eat out there. The view and ambience are great.
Next the Vegetables and Fruit section of the market. This is located outside of the main building, under one of the many covered shed. If you do not know where it is just try to find the iconic American Donut Kitchen truck! If you like you should try the donuts too! I heard it is pretty good but I was turned off by the long queue.
Here it is really such an eye opener for me. Did you guys know that I really like to shop in market when in overseas. There are so many new stuff to shop and buy, seeing some of the freshest fruits and vegetables. Some of the more unique stuff that I saw were green & red tomatoes on the vines, cauliflower in it’s whole vegs wrapping, there are even so many kinds of eggs to choose from. I really just wanna buy everything back, look at that, don’t you just wanna be a bunny? The fruits here are of so much better quality and prices were cheap too. I got some great huge golden kiwis for just a buck when it is so expensive back here. If you were also like to get some nuts to bring back for souvenirs, this is also the best place to do so.
The General store area is at the back of the market and it consists of alleys and alleys of shopping. Many things could be found here from cookware, wood products to clothes and even leather goods. Of course you couldn’t miss the usual souvenirs stuffs. Even though this is a western country, certain items you should still haggle for a little. I got myself a great magnet for my collection here. You will really definitely enjoy walking down the alleys and browse through.
Just in case, you get a little cold from the weather, there is a great boutique coffee cart located on the side of the market selling great coffee in those green cups. Soon, you will see everyone holding on to a little cuppa. P.s: This coffee hut is perfect for taking pictures.
This market is just full of places for nice shots to be posted on Instagram, I totally just spam lots and lots of pictures. One last place of Queen Vics that I would like to introduce you guys would be the Food Court area. There is actually nothing special here but rather an international style food court with cuisine from all sorts of places, from Western to Indian food and also even Singapore style fried noodles!!! It is also not cheap here. I had some fish and chips here for lunch, after all I heard that it is rather famous in town.
During the winter season usually from June to August the iconic winter night market on Wednesday take places which I would share more in a separate post, stay tuned for more food and shopping in the winter market. Let me know what are your thoughts on the market. On a last note, THIS PLACE REALLY HAVE A LOT OF INSTRAGRAM WORTHY SPOT!