Lauren, aka Ms Baklover, is a Footscray resident, mother of three and writer of the Footscray Food Blog – the first blog dedicated to exploring restaurants, cafes and specialty food stores in Melbourne’s West.
Why did you start the Footscray Food Blog?
I loved reading food blogs but they were mostly from the other side of the city. I started my blog in 2009 because there was very little about food in the West.
Can you name some of your favourite Footscray eateries?
There are so many. I love Addis Abeba on Nicholson Street. The owners are divine, the food always fresh and beautifully presented, and the beer is cold. Dong Que on Hopkins Street has great authentic spring rolls made with rice paper and turmeric fish with dill.
What are some of your favourite dishes in town?
I can’t go past the Hanoi style grilled pork at Sapa Hills. Two types of charcoal flavoured pork, unique dressing and DIY salad. I also love the mixed grill from Khartoum. A platter of fish, lamb, chicken and dips for around $20. Africa Town does amazing lamb tibs with green chillies cooked in butter. For a treat I head to Olympic doughnuts.
What’s Footscray’s best kept secret?
Natural Tucker artisan sourdough bread, sold out of the Footscray Market. Freshly squeezed sugar cane juice from the little shop on Byron Street near Little Saigon. The fish shop, Buttacavoli’s, in Footscray Market. Everything is so cheap and fresh.
Have you seen any changes to Footscray’s food scene over the last few years?
The new cafes have been a welcome change. I’ve also noticed Footscray is even more proud of its food. The Rickshaw Run is a great event that was created by the community. Footscray has more confidence to show itself off.