About The Store
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The Essential Ingredient, Melbourne’s leading specialty food and cookware store, is thrilled to announce that their second site in South Melbourne – the suburb where the empire began – is open.

It was in 1990 that Syd and Susan Weddell opened The Vital Ingredient on Eastern Road, South Melbourne. Fast forward almost 26 years and they have built an extraordinarily comprehensive operation focusing on the best local and imported foods and cookware from countries including Italy, France, Spain, United Kingdom, India and Indonesia. 

Designed by architect Ian Wilson from Wilson ID, the space is warm and inviting. A contemporary space founded on blues and greys combined with striking copper cookware light fittings set the scene for a memorable shopping experience.  

Maria Tsihlakis, co-owner and Managing Director of The Essential Ingredient Prahran says the decision to take on a new site is an extension of the brand and will bring the exciting and engaging culinary experiences the brand is known for to its South Melbourne customers. 

Over the last 26 years, the Essential Ingredient has been an integral element to Melbourne’s culinary and cultural growth and the South Melbourne store continues the narrative established in Prahran but has its own identity. There is naturally a strong food focus with some hero cookware brands alongside an impressive selection of professional knives, copper equipment and culinary books. 

Public car parking is available at the nearby South Melbourne Market and on Coventry Street
Knife sharpening service: leave your knives in store on the first or third Tuesday of each month. Contact the store for more information.