Most Melbournians know that they can’t ignore the gravitational pull of the Fitzroy area for its unique take on multiculturalism. Gertrude Street is no exception with its contemporary atmosphere which uptakes influences from a multiple forms of art and cuisine. There are several cafes along the street that primarily serve brunch, alongside other restaurants and bakeries which offer French, Italian and Spanish cuisine.
I couldn’t help but feel the pleasant and comfortable atmosphere of Gertrude Street. The varied European, Asian and American foodscape isn’t overwhelming as a result of being mindfully segregated across the street. Trendy clothes and furniture shops lend a hand towards upholding the dearer price bracket of neighbouring restaurants. Contrarily, while the cuisine of Gertrude Street is refined and of a high standard, it tends to gravitate towards authenticity rather than haute cuisine.
That said, we were still able to enjoy a delicious crepe from Breizoz without breaking the bank!
The emphasis on extending the foodscape across the street was much appreciated, doing so contributed to the street’s natural yet distinguished vibe. The sweet aroma of Fatto A Mano’s breads did not intermix with Breizoz Creperie’s rich, buttery atmosphere considering how they are moderately spaced within a block of each other. Ultimately, the generous spacing between the restaurants contributed to a distinct sensory experience.
As is the case with the younger Australian generation, multiculturalism has essentially been a large part of my life and many fond memories are tied to sensory experiences; particularly through food. Being an Australian born to immigrant Chinese parents, my upbringing has been a result of a mixture of different cultural traditions. Naturally, Gertrude Street’s multicultural foodscape ties well with me, bringing a strong sense of nostalgia of the countless cuisines my family and I experimented with whilst growing up.
I now have a greater understanding of how migrant cuisine impacted the street resulting in a varied foodscape. The focus towards the three nodes in particular gave a deeper insight towards the role multiculturalism has played in allowing such a plethora of cultural cuisines to function under one street.