Idle a city afternoon away by the bluestone cobbles at a Degraves Street or Centre Place cafe and become part of a Melbourne postcard scene.
Centre Place’s ever-changing stencil art and graffiti provide a sensory overload best dealt with by squeezing into Jungle Juice for an international coffee. The laneway’s soups, sushi and crepes will tempt, but you might want to save room for the delights on offer at Degraves Street, just across Flinders Lane.
Take your friends from out-of-town to Degraves Espresso, a quintessentially Melbourne cafe experience. Despite the Parisian vibe cast by the café umbrellas in the shadow of the impressive Majorca House, the dining on Degraves veers towards the Italian, with Il Tempo and Andiamo feeding many. Savour the sugar at Little Cupcakes.
An air of creativity blows up from the Degraves Street Subway and the Platform Artist Group’s underground displays. Get your smarts with a short course at the Centre for Adult Education campus, stocking up on artisan notebooks at Il Papiro and nourishing the minds of junior readers at The Little Bookroom.
Back on Centre Place browse clothes and accessories, local and imported, new and vintage at Fokus or Kinki Gerlinki. Finally, clamber up the narrow stairs to Hell’s Kitchen and survey the frenzy below over an icy cold beer.