Kumo Izakaya & Sake Bar was just named best Japanese Restaurant in the Victorian metro region by Savour Australia and I was recently invited to a sake tasting dinner held at Kumo, hosted by owner, Andre Bishop. Andre also runs other establishments including Izakaya Chuji and Nihonshu sake bar, and was the perfect person to teach us all about sake, having been titled a Sake Samurai by the Japanese Sake & Shochu Association in 2013 to award his knowledge and dedication to the world of sake. The sake...

Not to be confused with the Carlton side of Lygon street, The B-East is to be found in Brunswick East (get it?). Far from being just a burger joint, it's also a bar and live music venue, open until late every day. Offerings include burgers, sliders and subs, along with fries, American-style sides like hickory smoked corn, mac 'n' cheese bombs and corn bread, and salad to make us all feel better. Brioche is the bread of choice here, but rye and gluten free options are available too. [caption...

On Fridays and Saturdays, Hellenic Republic offers up a $12 takeaway lunch special, which is booked over the phone. At the moment the special is only being offered from its Brunswick store. This week's lunch consisted of chicken souvlaki, grain salad and pasteli. Despite the 25 minute drive home, the souvlaki held up relatively well. There was the comforting, char-grilled aroma of flame licked ingredients paired with flavoursome and juicy chicken, fresh tzatziki and fat potato chips. I was particularly impressed with the grain salad (which included pomegranate,...