Mr Price’s Food Store (North Melbourne)

North Melbourne is changing, and I’ll leave it up to you to decide if its for the better or worse. A plethora of “it place” brunch venues have opened up along the Queensberry / Erroll street area; Auction Rooms, Grigons & Orr, Fandango, Twenty and Six, Beatrix, Di Bella, Hot Poppy and many more… all within a 2 block radius.

However, a staple of North Melbourne has been Mr Price’s Food Store.

Now first, a disclaimer. I attended a cooking class that Gary Price ran over 18 months ago and since then I consider Gary a friend. It was with Gary’s help (and a few others) that I really gained in confidence in my cooking. More on the cooking school another day.

There are 3 things I love about Mr Price’s Food Store (in no particular order).

1. The location.

Its like lunch at someone else’s home.

Gary’s restaurant is filled with his own personal art and literary collection. Each piece of furniture has its own story, even his stove has a nickname. Its a venue that people speak in low tones, that laugh at neighboring jokes and that eavesdrop on Gary’s stories.

2. The Food

Chicken tenderloins with asapargus, peas and celeriac puree

Gary calls his food “uncluttered”. He has a knack of making it look simple while packing it with great flavours. His Welsh background peers through the menu with regular sightings of poached pork sausages, or hearty warm soups. He spent plenty of time in India and makes Apple Vinegar Duck Curry that is out of this world.

Key to the food at Mr Price’s food store is the menu. It is handwritten each morning and is filled with in-season produce Gary has picked up from the Queen Vic Market earlier that morning. Do you get any fresher than that?

3. Gary.

Mr Gary Price has the unenviable task of being not only the head chef, but also front of house, the cleaner, the waiter, the story teller. People relish his food and but its his company that keeps them returning regularly. Or is it the food? Always full of gossip and despite his many roles, he is never rushed. If you loved the salmon linguine you just polished off he’ll most likely give you his secrets on how he makes it.

Mr Price’s Food Store is a unique spot and another favorite of North Melbourne.

Rating: 18/20 (8/10 for food, 5/5 for service, 5/5 for value)

Mr Price’s food store is on 502 Queensberry Street in North Melbourne and is open on Monday to Saturday for Lunch only. My best suggestion would be to book ahead (on 03 9326 8062) as the restaurant doesn’t seat too many and is quite often full with regulars. (Yes, a place that takes book-ins!) He also does functions and off site catering.

There is also a link through to a short documentary on Gary and his restaurant on Vimeo by “Documentary Shop” Check it here.

Gary from North Melbourne from Documentary Shop on Vimeo.

Mr Price's Food Store on Urbanspoon

About johnsonskitchen

Foodie

7 comments

  1. Ray

    Gary Raymond Price is a horrible man with a very negative attitude. He speaks negatively about people and is nothing more than a gossip and a village idiot. His food is bland and he opens and closes his venue at whim; often putting paying customers out. In his local community of North Melbourne, he is regarded as a drunk who has nothing good to say about anyone who does not attend to his fragile ego. Go to the local IGA for something on special: better value and the check out staff will be more polite.

    • I could easily just delete the comment, however in the interests of free speech I’ll leave it here. Personal attacks aren’t necessary, if you don’t enjoy Gary’s restaurant then you don’t have to go there.

      His style may not be for everyone. He doesn’t publish his opening hours to allow him the freedom to open when he likes.

      His food is anything but bland. It is fairly traditional, simple and uncluttered. As a former resident of North Melbourne and a member of the local community I loved the different perspective Gary put on the food and service he provided.

      I also would consider Gary a friend, so you’ll win no support for your comments on this blog.

  2. wow, gorgeous food & nice display. like it, yaam.

  3. Anonymous

    Mr price is an arrogant shit
    Who should be put down immediately
    Yours sincerely
    Gary Raymond price

  4. Pingback: Influences and interesting people « johnsonskitchen

  5. So now I know what you’ve been raving about. Looks fantastic!
    Yep, North Melbourne sure is changing…

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