Frugal Foo

Foo Thinking Money"Money can't buy me love"... But everything else is in this blog.

La Camera Southbank - Go the Full Monty

Relax. Keep your pants on. I'm about to reveal to you one of Melbourne's best value breakfasts. At $7.50 it's not what Frugal Foo would normally call cheap. Most days Foo likes to eat breakfast for around $5. But Frugal Foo looks for VALUE and the breakfasts at La Camera have been a long time local favourite at Southbank.

From Monday to Friday, La Camera discount all their top price breakfasts down to $7.50. And coffee or tea is only $2. The weekend price for many of these breakfasts is $14.50 and $3.80 for coffee, so at $7.50 and $2 respectively it is great value during the week.

Highlight: My personal favourite is the Full Monty which has eggs anyway you like them, toast, bacon, sausage, mushrooms, tomato relish, baked beans and a hash brown. Not at all greasy as it so easily could be. My dining partner swears by the Veggie Brekkie which is the same thing minus bacon and sausage, add avocado and spinach.

Criticism: The prices have risen and I kinda suspect the sausages are not quite the full monty I remembered in previous years. Signs everywhere say no bill splitting but that is often conveniently forgotten at the checkout.

La Camera
Open 7 days for breakfast, lunch and dinner. $7.50 breakfasts only available Mon - Fri from 7:30am until 11:00am excluding public holidays.
La Camera is perched one level above the food court on the mid Level East End at Southgate - Melbourne, Australia
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Meshiya Japanese Restaurant - "Linner" Anyone?

Possibly Homer Simpson has already discovered this otherwise hidden meal time. "Linner" as you would have guessed is half way between lunch and dinner. Some days eating lunch at the customary time just isn't possible. You're just too busy, or maybe not hungry, but for whatever reason it's mid afternoon and you still haven't eaten. "Linner" is the answer. And Meshiya has a mid afternoon "happy hour" deal which fits the bill.

Between 3:00pm and 4:30pm Meshiya serves up a selection of three main course dishes for only $6.80 each. On offer are two fried rice dishes one featuring eel and the other crab, or an ox-tongue noodle soup. I wasn't game to try the ox-tongue. Some things just aren't meant to go into my mouth thanks! I ordered the eel which for no rational reason seems more palatable.

Also of reasonable value and available on the menu at any time are selection of rice dishes and Ramen (noodles in broth). I have had the Oyoka Don (rice topped with chicken and egg) for $10.30 which was a decent feed.

Highlight: The dining room has a cosy feeling on a cold day in town as you sit slightly sunken below footpath level. It beats sitting in that awful QV Urban Market food court nearby. Prompt and friendly service.

Criticism: The eel on fried rice dish was a little oily for my liking. My fellow diners ordered the crab on fried rice and disagreed with my complaint saying they were quite happy and will come again. Bill splitting was discouraged.

Meshiya Japanese Restaurant
Open 7 Days 12:00pm until 11:00pm
QV Shopping Centre (Meshiya faces Lonsdale St at ground level)
200 Lonsdale St
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Diane SuShi - Blink and you'll miss it.

Often cheap sushi is mostly rice with a little bit of filling up front for show. Not so at Diane SuShi in the city. They've lifted their game in the last 12 months. Their prices have risen slightly but this is still the best value sushi I know in this part of town. Prices of hand rolls start at $1.60 for the Special of the Day which is California roll every day. The average hand roll price is $2. This compared with places very nearby asking a flat price of $2.50 per roll.Two California and a Tabikko roll

Best Value Meal: May I suggest a filling lunch of 2 California rolls and 1 Tokikko and Avocado roll for $5. Soy sauce and wasabi included.

Other Menu offerings: Smoked Salmon roll $1.80, Chili Salmon roll $2 (recommended!), plus many other unusual hand roll flavours within this price range. All food is take away only.

Highlight: The sushi is always fresh and feels chilled which is reassuring.

Criticism: Right on the noisy bus stop.

Heading up Lonsdale St away from Melbourne Central Shopping center look out for the entrance to the City Mart Asian Grocery. Diane Sushi is but an opening on the right as you would enter the Grocers. You can easily walk straight past if you don't know it's there.
Diane SuShi
270 Lonsdale St
Melbourne 3000

Open 7 days a week

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Olivino Cafe Breakfast for $5

Coffee and ToastEven simple coffee and toast tastes better when someone else prepares it. The fruit toast alone provides a square breakfast loaded with apricots, dates and all sorts of seeds. Two slices with coffee will cost $6, but honestly, I only order one single slice and I'm satisfied. And for a single slice it's a dollar less.

Best Value Meal: Coffee with one slice of Fruit Toast $5.

Other Menu Offerings:
Coffee with 2 slices of Fruit or Raisin Toast $6
Coffee with an Egg & Bacon Roll $7
Coffee with Banana Bread $6
Bircher Muesli $6.90

Highlight Dining Here: Modern feel. Surrounded by lots of glass for those of us who like to watch...

Criticism: Expensive coffee ($3.50) if you buy it on it's own. But a loyalty card is available offering your 7th coffee free.

Directions: Olivino is best approached from Little Lonsdale St despite it's street address being Lonsdale St.
Shop 1, Urban Workshop Building
50 Lonsdale St
Ph 9663 0800

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About Frugal Foo

Frugal Foo Face
This blog started off as a dumping ground for much of my own inane ramblings about money saving discoveries I had made around my home town of Melbourne.

Now days much of the content is contributed by other frugal living enthusiasts from around the globe who have stories to share about their successful money saving ideas, or ways to conserve other limited resources, without further complicating their lives or wasting precious time.  I sincerely hope to continue to receive tips and ideas from other people via comments and guest articles.  Of course your personal opinions may often be different to mine but that's no reason to hold back.  I look forward to reading what you have to say.

For more information about writing a guest post, please read the guest post policy.
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