Shopping and the virus

(Last updated 12 April 2020) With the assistance of the residents of the Sumner Estate, here is some intelligence on how to stay civilised during the pandemic.  There is scope for neighbours to combine orders, especially of bread, which the virus would like us to pop regularly up to the shops for.  When receiving deliveries, the idea is to throw the packaging away and plate up, wash your hands before touching your face or surfaces, and eat.  Most businesses seem to be offering contactless delivery now.

Note: references to hoodies are to residents of the Hood. The Hood, is how Sumnerites refer to the Sumner Estate.

There are some existing resources:

Northcote, Thornbury and Fairfield Takeaway Facebook Group (nearly 4000 members)

Reservoir/Preston Takeaway Facebook Group

Brunswick Café and Restaurant Takeaway Facebook Group

Fitzroy, Fitzroy North, Collingwood, Abbotsford, Carlton Takeaway Facebook Group

I think the titles describe where the businesses are, not necessarily where they deliver to.

Also, this Broadsheet list of restaurants pivoting to takeaway / delivery. And someone else who had the same idea, and has compiled a list a bit like my one of places offering delivery in the northern suburbs: ‘The complete Northside list of small businesses home delivering’. Below are some of his contributions, asterisked.

Also: and

Then of course there’s DeliverooDoor Dash and Uber Eats. In case you’re as behind the times as I am, Foodora doesn’t operate in Melbourne any more. But some of these platforms take a third of the total price. A startup called Mr Yum has quite a few restaurants in Collingwood and Fitzroy who deliver and it takes 4.5% of the total price.

Hood favourites

Hoodies Haydn Chiron and Sue Sheehan run Rhubarb Rhubarb Organics at the Preston Market.  They have started a fruit and veggie box delivery business and will deliver their boxes to the Hood for $7 and are already delivering to lots of hoodies.  And you can order a loaf of Irrewarra bread from them.  There is a way to give them a shopping list too pending the full online store getting up and running. In these difficult times, Haydn is getting up at 3 a.m. to buy at the wholesale market and is himself doing deliveries.

Farina 00 is everyone’s favourite local pizza restaurant.  They’re delivering pizza on Thursday-Saturday nights, and it is every Hoodie’s duty to order a pizza from them from time to time.  It’s close and each delicious pizza comes fresh and hot. 

A1 Bakery is now delivering to the Hood and indeed everywhere within a 5 km radius!

Singh’s Indian is a family business which has been there under the gaze of the golden virgin for 30 years.  They are now delivering via Deliveroo. Horn Please curries are now 30% off: pick up, Deliveroo or Uber Eats.

CERES’s Tamil Feasts are now delivered to the Hood, if you spend $40, which means buying at least two feasts. You need to order the day before.  It is a social enterprise supporting recently settled asylum seekers.  Excellent for eating while watching ‘Stateless‘ on ABC.

The delightful pan Middle-Eastern Mankoushe on Lygon Street has channelled its weekend feasts and has Coronavirus Snack Packs of five different vegetarian dishes with homemade lemonade and halva for $20, pick up or through Uber Eats / Deliveroo. It would be sad if Mankoushe went the way of Alisha’s Cafe Collective, which has closed.

Some of Monsieur Truffe‘s chocolates are available at the next door cafe. The micro-roaster in St George’s Road, Eureka Coffee, is delivering free to North Fitzroy and for $4 to Northcote.

Puppies, pharmacies

I am unaware of a dial-a-puppy service. Now there’s a business proposition.

Silverii’s Pharmacy on the corner of Holden Street and St George’s Road will deliver to people with flu-like symptoms if you email them your prescription.


Readings is offering $5 delivery to the Hood.  

Even more local, however, is the lovely Brunswick Bound bookshop on Sydney Road.  Their blog is here. They are offering online shopping and free delivery within 48 hours to Brunswick, East Brunswick, West Brunswick, Coburg, North Carlton, North Fitzroy, Moonee Ponds, Pascoe Vale South, Northcote, Preston, Parkville, Thornbury and Essendon.

Also offering free local delivery to the Hood 6 days a week is the equally lovely Neighbourhood Books, the first shop in the High Street Northcote village.


The editors were making bread daily and eating it hot straight out of the oven for lunch, until we ran out of flour, using this famous no-knead New York Times recipe. 400 Gradi’s mercato has 10 kg bags of pizza flour, I noticed. It’s definitely fun, and completely achievable even for people who think they can’t make bread.

Cavallini in Clifton Hill is offering free next day delivery on a dozen or more hot cross buns ($35 a dozen). When we ordered a dozen, Robert Coco the head pastry chef and founder of the business himself appeared at the door and effected a contactless delivery. To order, ring 9486 3883. They will add loaves of bread to the order if you ask them.

Dench delivers pre-determined boxes of breads, buns and pastries etc to the Hood for $7.50.  A dozen hot cross buns and 4 English muffins will set you back $47.50, therefore.  Four loaves of bread will set you back $42.50. 

All Are Welcome near the Town Hall in High Street Northcote offers next-day delivery for $5 on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday to Northcote, Thornbury, Clifton Hill, Alphington, Fairfield and Preston.  A dozen hot cross buns will set you back $45.

Northcote Bakeshop in High Street Thornbury allows online purchases and delivery to Northcote, Thornbury, Preston and Reservoir.  When I tried it, delivery seemed to be $5.

Choukette boulangerie on Sydney Road in Brunswick is open for takeaway and is doing deliveries through a local startup called Fresh4U.  Deliveries of pastries, bread, jam, hot cross buns (a dozen = $39, delivered) arrive two days after ordering provided you order before 5 p.m.

Brunetti is itself delivering to Northcote and Brunswick, including frozen cooked woodfired pizzas to top and reheat at home ($10 for a Margherita).  Delivery to the Sumner Estate seems to be $15. They say if you order first thing in the morning, delivery should be able to be provided by lunchtime.  All deliveries are in the morning.  Order online or call 9347 2801.

Phil’s Bakehouse & Cafe (Northcote)* – yes…those famous pies for our hangovers!

Publique Bakery (Preston market)*


 A crowd based in Northcote called ‘My Milkman‘ leafletted the hood the other day offering delivery of full cream glass bottled organic milk for $4.49 a 950 ml bottle. The first delivery is on 13 April 2020. Delivery is between 5.30 – 7.30 a.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, when they collect the empty bottles. Delivery is available to Brunswick; Brunswick East; Fitzroy; Collingwood; Abbotsford; Clifton Hill; Fitzroy North; Northcote; Thornbury; Preston; Alphington; and Fairfield. 

Gourmet stuff, meat

400 Gradi, the award winning pizza place on Lygon Street opposite the Gelobar, has opened a pop up ‘mercato‘ just south of Blythe St (continuation of Separation / Arthurton). They have kilo tubs of buffalo mozzarella, flour, frozen pizzas ($10), pasta, and things to put on top of your pizza once you’ve put it in the oven. They deliver free for orders of $25 or more to the Hood and within 5km of Brunswick, Eastland and Essendon. If you attend at 314-316 Lygon St, you can also collect a freshly made pizza.

Melbourne Food Squad describes themselves as ‘fresh wholesale produce delivered to your home’.  They have meat boxes, fruit boxes, vegetable boxes, quality meat and seafood as well as milk and OJ and other stuff.  Delivery seems to be $14.

I’m told that The Gourmet Meat Rack at Northcote Plaza are offering free delivery. So too the Plaza’s Romatino’s Free Range Butcher open 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Monday to Saturday. And:

Brenta Meats (Fairfield)* – call the shop and can be paid by eftpos/cash on delivery- Ph 9489 0820

Joe’s Quality Corner (Preston)*

Ocean Made (Collingwood)* – Seafood

Preston Free Range Poultry & Game (Preston)*

Obelix & Co near Piedimontes will deliver great cheeses, pates, terrines, rillettes, and refrigerated / jarred meals prepared by them.  They have just set up an online shop. Order by 5 p.m. the day before for deliveries on Wed 8th, Thurs 9th, Tues 14th, Wed 15th, and Fri 16th April.  Delivery is free to Clifton Hill and Fitzroy North, and $10 to the Hood. A little while ago, they were offering a ‘basics box’ for $125 including delivery including 2 pates, 2 500ml soups, one ragu, a cottage pie and a pasta al forno.  Their green pea and truffle dip is wicked tossed through warm green vegetables.

Fruit and veg; Deli & groceries

One hoodie highly recommends delivery from La Manna on Sydney Road. They have an online shop. They offer free delivery on orders of $70 or more. Otherwise, delivery is $15. As of this morning, the first delivery slot available is Saturday. They also offer click and collect. As of this morning, the first collection slot is Wednesday.

Another hoodie recommends Biviano Direct, an outpost of Station Street’s Biviano & Sons. They have a variety of fruit and veggie boxes for free next day delivery. Email them at Info @ Biviano Direct for a list of boxes with precise content lists and prices (small = $50, medium = $70, large = $100, XL = $150).

Barkly Square’s Gangemis delivers through Your Grocer, but due to increased demand, that’s a work in progress for the moment. Your Grocer says ‘You’ll soon be able to get all of your fresh food and groceries from over 60 of Melbourne’s favourite shops and markets delivered to your door (at a safe distance!)’

The aforementioned Fresh4U has recently added a useful ‘build a box’ feature for fruit and veggies. The box costs $35 but you get to select what goes into it. Delivery is two days after order.

Also (fruit and veg):

Camalugia & Sons (Preston)*

Ceres Joe’s Market Garden (Coburg)* – Der Partisan bakery goods also available

Flowers Vassette (Fitzroy)*

Mecca Bros Fruit City (Fitzroy North)* – Delivering as far as Preston

Northside Fruit & Veg (Reservoir)*

Nova Fresh Fruit and Veg (Northcote)* 

And also (deli & groceries):

Brother Alec (Thornbury) – after Easter they’ll be expanding their grocery range to include organic flours, eggs, bagels etc

Dexter Deli (Preston)*

Gerry’s Deli (Preston)*

Icecream Social (Thornbury)*

Little Tienda (Thornbury)*

Local Pantry Co (Preston)*

Moon Rabbit Cafe (Preston)*

Small Axe Deli (Brunswick)

Tahina online market (Northcote)

Theodore’s (Brunswick) – also delivering fresh seafood

Union St Brewers (Brunswick)

Subscription boxes

We often get Marley Spoon and recommend it for these times.  They deliver a recipe and exactly the ingredients needed to cook it, including fresh herbs, nuts and spices and excluding some pantry staples like soy sauce.  There is an option to get a fruit box.  You can get early Saturday morning delivery in the Hood which is convenient. Hello Fresh is also good.

Apparently CERES is not accepting new subscriptions to their veggie boxes.  But a Brunswick East Primary family is offering veggie boxes plus add-ons, e.g. breakfast boxes, through its wine delivery business, The Local Drop.



There is a brand new Coles in the East Brunswick Village development north of the 7-11 on the corner of Glenlyon Road and Nicholson Street, opposite Sumner St.  Coles is not delivering but has teamed up with existing platform Airtasker for a ‘Coles Shop and Deliver’ trial, by which you can put up an ad for specific shopping you want done, the time by which you want it done by, and the amount you are prepared to pay the shopper.  Airtasker members then accept offers which are acceptable to them.  No doubt they can videoconference you into the shopping trip so you can choose / guide what to buy in case of doubt or unavailability.  Resist the temptation presented by this platform to underpay the airtasker.


Woolworths is giving delivery priority to the elderly, people with a disability, those with compromised immunity and people in mandatory isolation, but healthy young neighbours in the Sumner Estate reported success in obtaining a delivery slot about a week ago.  For those who need it, it also provides the option of delivering a ‘basics box’ delivered through Australia Post within 2-5 days of ordering. It requires the creation of a Woolworths Online account or you can call 1800 904 698.


Piedimontes newly has an online shopping facility and a c. $10 delivery service.  When we tried it, however, many of the items did not turn up as they were out of stock.

Sydney Road Super IGA

Just north of Blythe St on Sydney Road is an IGA with convenient rear car parking off Stewart Street, the street that ends at CERES’s main entrance. It is one of the few supermarkets in Melbourne open on Christmas Day, so I imagine its Easter opening hours will be extensive.


Black Hearts & Sparrows in combination with Schwarz Media have a subscription wine delivery service, called ‘A Wine Service’, at $20, $30 or c. $35 a bottle per half dozen.  Or you can shop online and get free delivery for orders of $150 or more and $10 delivery otherwise.

Twisted Vine is a lovely bottle shop in Miller St, Preston. If you haven’t discovered that sweet little suite of shops, you should. It’s a lovely safe-for-kids backstreets ride of about 3 km due north via Shakespeare Gv, Woolhouse St, and Leinster Gv up past Mayer Park, along the Great Western Shimmy. But if you’re not up for the ride, a sign in their window says that if you want a delivery, call 9480 1179.

Dan Murphys allows online shopping.  Delivery to the Hood of a case of beer seems to cost about $7.

Samuel Pepys (Westgarth): must-see video ad for the new delivery service. And Thornbury’s Carwyn Cellars are doing free local delivery of most products.


Dexter Deli (Preston)*

Future Mountain Brewing (Reservoir)*

Hard Rubbish Bar (Preston)* Cocktail delivery. Shaken at your doorstep, eftpos on delivery. Text 0414704077

Moon Dog Brewing  (Preston)* 

Northside Wines (Northcote)*

Pallino Bar (Thornbury)* – ready made Negroni  

Purple Emerald Lounge Bar (Northcote)* – call or email 9482 7007 or

Tallboy and Moose (Preston)*

Theodore’s (Brunswick)*

The Prosecco Queen (Alphington)*

3 Ravens Brewery (Thornbury)* – Free delivery within 5km of 3071

Umberto Espresso Bar (Thornbury)* – Aperol Spritz packs

3 thoughts on “Shopping and the virus

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