An enchanting affair at Luci…

There’s a fine line when it comes to being opulent and fancy, overly indulgent, and still personable. Particularly when it comes to restaurant hotels. Luci- the newest kid to hit the block in the centre of CBD is adjoined to the ever so famous Hilton hotel.

Part of it screams hotel chain. The bright bold and recognisable flashing ‘Hilton’ sign before you walk in. But as I enter the 1930’s neo – gothic, perfectly set restaurant Luci, that’s cosily tucked inside the bustling street, the attention I receive is much more personable than just another hotel number.

Stunning marble floors, grand high ceilings and beautiful pillars may seem intimidating, but with sweetly dispositioned and knowledgeable waitstaff, it becomes a historic journey I feel fortunate to be a part of.

Lush seating and immaculetly set tables provide a professional but somewhat relaxed vibe as waitstaff eagerly attend and listen to our story and care for our needs.

This mix of a typical Hilton hotel may appear confusing with a Melbourne/ international/ European vibe, but seated in the cosy booth, somehow, the myriad of stuff, it works.

Scallops aren’t necessarily a highlight but all is redeemed when the squid ink pasta arrives. Sweet juicy curls of black ringlets appear as a fishing net magically capturing the freshly caught crustacean of mussels and pippis. Particularly on a cold winter evening, the extra addition of a warming fresh red chilli, gives the ultimate satiety to my grumbling belly. A perfect pink sirloin is cooked so tenderly with a softly bold jus, that wait staff need to return several times before clearing. The mature flavours make it essential to mop up every last bit with house made fluffy sourdough.

Decadent semi fredo

Desserts are a not negotiable. Glistening and decadent chocolate semi Fredo sits on a dusty crumb with a fresh citrus mandarin, otherwise a coconut cream meringue keeps it gorgeously light,

The venue has boasted a BYO option, yet for the real wine nerds amongst us, this would be a wasted opportunity. So many complex and unique varietals by the class, such as a German Schönburger from Tasmania, an Italian Montepulciano d’Abruzzo and for $36 a glass a Monalcino Sangiovese with a coravin fit. It’s a special occasion, ‘once in a life time’ palate pleaser, and the calm enriching explanation makes this elite glass so incredibly memorable.

Luci makes it possible to be able to sit in history, dine in Europe, and have a grand and modern old fashioned great time.

Luci, 472 Bourke St, Melbourne 3000
Hours: Tue  – Fri   Breakfast 6:30am – 10am, Lunch 12pm – 3pm, Dinner 6pm – 9pm, Sat & Sun   Breakfast 7am – 11am, Dinner 6pm – 10pm,

About the author

Coming from an Israeli background, and being fortunate to live and travel abroad in the Middle East and Europe for several years, Darielle has been a passionate foodie with since birth. She has an inherent love and knowledge of the hospitality industry, visited over 200 cellar doors worldwide and was the chief Melbourne judge at an international Resturant guide. With a corporate profession working as a lawyer in banking for 11 years, Darielle developed a love of writing. A busy mum of 2 little girls and a woman about town, if you don’t find Darielle out on a run, a gym class or hiking to the top of a mountain somewhere outlandish, she will no doubt be visiting a winery with her partner, sampling food at the newest Resturant, or cooking up a storm in her kitchen.


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