Our Special Collections


Culinary Research Collection contains historically significant cookery books from around the world, including early Australian rare cookery books. The collection provides rich and extensive culinary resources for research in Australian culinary history, other culinary cultures, extensive recipes for all cuisines worldwide, and recipes for special occasions.


The Institute acquired the Fuller Collection from Professor John Fuller of Oxford University to celebrate the Institute’s 50th anniversary in 1995. The collection consists of over 530 books on wine, distilling, brewing, viticulture, and technological aspects of wine production, spirits, and other drinks. Many of the books date back to the 18th and 19th centuries; the oldest published in 1733. Prized gems of the collection include Sir Edward Barry’s ‘Wines of the Ancients’ (1775), ‘Liquor Acts of 1736 from the Reign of George III’ (1738).


The collection is made up of over 700 menus from all over the world with a large part being Australian in origin. It contains menus from a variety of sources including cruise, club, restaurants, bars and hotels from the early 1900s to the present. The collection functions as a wonderful resource which displays the changes of styles in food and menu design over the last 100 years. The cruise menus in our collection are particularly evocative of a mode of travel and the pace of life of an earlier era.

Online Menu Collection


The Collection was started by Chef Zimmerman’s grandfather and consists of a book of more than 1300 menus and epicurean articles from all over England and Europe. Dating back to 1862, the menus feature table d'hôte as well as banquet menus. Most are presented in French, some with a translation in their language of origin. The menus give us interesting insights into dining habits of the times. Items listed are very much appropriate for the seasons, unlike modern day menus which feature many ingredients available all year round.

In 2010, as part of William Angliss Institute’s celebration of its 70th year, the LRC was granted money to restore the Zimmerman Book. It has been beautifully restored to its former glory by an offsite conservator and is now available for viewing.

Zimmerman Book Online



 The WAI Archive collection is dedicated to acquiring materials about William Angliss Institute to document and preserve the history of the Institute. The collection currently includes approximately 3600 items including books, pamphlets and brochures, newspaper clippings, manuscripts, videocassettes, photographs, plans, portraits and pictures, DVDs and CD-ROM.

Featured Book




Consult Me For All You Want To Know Melbourne: Robertson, [1866]

A compilation of helpful household tips and tricks written up in alphabetical order. As well as recipes for cooking, brewing, baking. It also includes information on spotting the symptoms of certain diseases and remedies of the time, how to dye cloth into 'modern style and the newest colours' of the time and information on the laws of a 'married woman's property'. There is a beautiful colour lithograph frontispiece shows activities of household in the past.