Gill and Joel know hospitality and food pretty damn well. Manzana would simply not be without this hilarious and hard working partnership- owner and head chef, Joel Groenen, and Co owner and front of house manager/Mumma, Gill Farmer.


Owners – Joel and Gill at Manzana.


Our head chef Joel isn’t afraid of a sombrero or a bit of piñata!

Despite popular belief, no, we do not have a team of Mexican immigrants in our kitchen. We have one Joel- but we are positive there must be some kind of Mexican through-back in him somewhere.

Joel has a serious passion for creating delicious food with unique flavour combinations that just work and complement each other. He has a keen eye for detail (as you can tell by the look of our food) and is quite the perfectionist when it comes to presenting what he has created.

Having started his apprenticeship when he was sixteen, Joel always knew he had a flair for cooking and creating and was eager to get out into the industry and show off his skills. Working in all different establishments, from chaotic kitchens in Melbourne’s CBD to Eden Gardens tranquil and home-like cafe on the Mornington Peninsula, it was only a matter of time before Joel was going to open up his very own restaurant and show off his creative talents.

Gill and Joel had worked alongside each other at Linton’s cafe, and after working as a massage therapist at the Peninsula Hotsprings for five years, Gill decided to have a significant industry switch and jumped on board with the idea to start a restaurant in their hometown of Mt Eliza.

The two have always enjoyed modern Mexican food, and frequented Melbourne’s CBD restaurant Mamacita. Identifying a gap in the kind of restaurants on the Mornington Peninsula, the couple were inspired to create something of their own with their unique flair, Joel’s experience and Gill’s creative eye in interior design.

alas, MANZANA WAS BORN, and boy are we happy about it!


Manzana by night.

Our lovely owners would love to meet you and are super proud of their establishment, so why not come and see it for yourself?!

Love the Manzana Team x



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Manzana is passionate about food, but also about social issues and one in particular being tackling the problem of disadvantaged youths and homelessness in our very own backyards in Melbourne.

Manzana will be hosting an all you can eat burrito night on Wednesday the 22nd of August, and all profits will be going to STREAT, a Melbourne based charity that works to tack10525718_814428718607975_2373242419338203826_nle  disadvantage and homelessness by providing the life-skills, support networks, work experience and training young people require to kickstart their lives and a career in hospitality.


One night only (22nd of August). $35 Per person for all you can eat BURRITOS (Why wouldn’t you?!).

Manzana, along with STREAT really appreciate your support and hope you come and enjoy many burritos and sombrero wearing to help support the work of this amazing charity.


Bookings essential. Phone Manzana on 97877772 or pop down to 114 Mount Eliza Way, Mount Eliza to lock in a table for your friends and family. 

Love the Manzana team x 


Manzana welcomed the quirky, but confident Melbourne celebrity Gamble Breaux for an evening of modern Mexican food and many margaritas with her partner, Dr. Rick Wolfe, one of Australia’s most respected cataract and laser refractive eye surgeons and her three step children on Friday. Gamble is a former model and art consultant from Sydney who featured on the Arena TV (foxtel) show The House Wives Of Melbourne, which follows the lavish, but sometimes dramatic lifestyles of six wealthy and extravagant women of Melbourne, revealing a little insight into their fabulous world. Manzana is Gamble’s favourite restaurant on the Mornington Peninsula and she isn’t afraid to tuck into some of our homemade corn tortilla chips with guacamole and Baja crumbed fish tacos, washed down with her all time favourite drink, our Manzana Margarita. Despite battling a cold, Gamble was eager to test the theory that Margaritas are the cure for a sore throat and blocked nose (Alas, we agree!)

love the Manzana team x 

Gamble and Step son enjoying Margaritas at Manzana.

Gamble and Step son enjoying Margaritas at Manzana.




Our famous lime #manzanamargarita

We are not scared to tell you about how much we love our cocktail menu (its the best on the Ninsh’ hands down) so much so that we want to share with you our ‘Cocktail Of The Week’ segment, where we will share a blog post showcasing one of our favourite cocktails, and include the recipe! Each week, the featured cocktail on our blog will be on special at Manzana, and if you snap a photo of yourself drinking one in the restaurant that week with the hashtag #cocktailoftheweek and tag @manzanarestaurant on Instagram or Facebook you will go into the draw to win a round of cocktails for your table ON US. Here at Manzana, we have never met a margarita we didn’t like- so we thought it was appropriate that our first #cocktailoftheweek is our famous Manzana Margarita. While we do have many different flavours-from passionfruit to jalapeño, our personal favourite is the classic lime margarita, the perfect combination of sweet and sour! and they go almost too well with one (or five) of our soft shell tacos.

Fish tacos and Manzana margaritas are a match made in heeeavan.

Our recommendation: one (or ten) Fish Tacos and our Manzana margarita!

 So the story goes a little something like this (apparently)- Dallas socialite, named..you guessed it – Margarita Sames favourite party game was to duck behind the bar and mix up all kinds of drinks for her guests with whatever was available. During a 1948 Christmas party at her vacation home in Acapulco, Mexico – must be nice – she threw together tequila, Cointreau and lime juice with great success. Her friends took the recipe statewide, and it spread like melted cheese sauce over nachos. While we aren’t completely convinced of this story, seeing as truth be told that Jose Cuervo tequila was running Margarita ad campaigns as early as 1945. Sorry, Marge. You sound like a good time though.


Cocktail shaker


Fresh lime juice

Tequila of your choice (we like Jose Silver)


Crushed rock Salt (for rim)

Lime wedge to make it sing!

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Juicy limes ready for many a-margarita!

Step one: Pour 1 shot of tequila, 1/2 shot of cointreau and 2 1/2 shots of lime juice into cocktail shaker .

Step Two: Add ice cubes, do a little dance, shake it around.

Step Three: Line the rim of the glass with a cut lime wedge and dip into crushed salt, we like our margaritas over ice so pour all ingredients from shaker into glass and finish with lime wedge on the side or in the glass.

Pop down to Manzana this week and enjoy a marg with us or make it at home, but remember to share a photo, hashtag #cocktailoftheweek and tag @manzanarestaurant to be in the running to win a round of cocktails, ARIBA!

Stay tuned for next weeks special- we’ve got a goodie up our sleeve!

Love the Manzana Team x