Best Burgers in Melbourne 2016
Best burgers in Melbourne, we have searched high and low for the best this city has to offer. The humble burger has risen in status to be a gourmet item of choice on menus across Melbourne. Culinary giants are making their own burger versions for customers.
There seems to be a trend away from old school burgers to burgers that incorporate more gourmet and quality ingredients. The trend is away from the huge burger to something almost stylish and smaller - yet packs a punch.
Do you prefer nouveau burgers or the traditional burger?
Here are contenders for Best Burger in Melbourne (in no particular order) -
8bit in Footscray
Leonards House of Love in South Yarra
Grand Trailer Park Taverna on Bourke St CBD
Tuck Shop Takeaway in Caulfield North
Cafe 51 in South Melbourne
Royal Stacks on Collins St CBD
Stagger Lees on Brunswick St
Huxtaburger on Smith St, CBD, Praharan
Saint Barry in Surrey Hills
Caffe La Via on Glenferrie Road, Malvern
Goneburger on Fitzroy St St Kilda
Brother Burger and The Marvellous Brew on Brunswick St
Hello Sam on Chapel St South Yarra
Lounge Kitchen on Swanston St CBD
One Plus Piece on Whitehorse Rd Balwyn
JD's Burgers in Kew
Mr Burger food trucks and outlets
Caffe La Via in Malvern
Tree of Us in North Richmond
Rockpool Bar and Grill in the Crown Casino
Rockwell and Sons in Smith Street
Lord of the Fries on Brunswick Street and 6 other locations
Danny's Burgers on St Georges Road
Burger Lounge in Eltham
Trunk Diner in the CBD
The Merrywell at Crown
Grill'd - various locations
Ziggy's Eatery in Carlisle St St Kilda
Andrews Hamburgers in Albert Park
The Royale Brothers in Brighton
YOMG in Glen Waverley.
1090 Burger in Richmond.
8bit - Footscray, CBD
8bit is surely in contention for best burger in Melbourne, located just off the main drag of Footscray. The World Loves Melbourne considers a great burger to be about the whole experience not just marks on the individual parts or ingredients. As an experience 8bit kicks burger butt. The flavours of the burgers are magnificent and the elements are in harmony, with no ingredient over dominating. Although the meat patty remains the hero as it should. Word had been spreading fast in the foodie community about these burgers, but it was while enjoying a burger tour of Adelaide I met burger joint owners there who had travelled to Melbourne to check out the wonders of 8bit. Rather compelling.
Check out the sexy juicy large Double Dragon, with double the good stuff! Check the 2 patties of char grilled beef, oozing with double cheese, double quality bacon and fresh accompaniments of pickles, lettuce, mustard and sauce.
This burger is so good it's addictive. I couldn't put it down. It all comes together. The bun was soft and perfect, and interestingly not part of the Melbourne obsession with brioche. The meat is perfectly char grilled and smoky. The pickles crisp. The sauce compelling. Not too much lettuce. The cheese melted into the meat. The 8bit and cheese is a great burger in the classic style. Locals love 8bit but we contend it's worth the drive across town for these burgers. It speaks volumes when customers converge when the doors open at 11am, including a few tradies in their gear.
Leonards House of Love - South Yarra
Leonards House of Love is a must visit burger desination in Melbourne. Like many great burger houses it has chefs with fine pedigree behind the scenes; Nick Stanton is a Melbourne chef legend and we have enjoyed his spectacular cuisine in recent years. The venue is a 1970's style retro vibe in the theme of a log cabin. It feels more like a clubhouse than a restaurant. The burgers here are some of the best in Australia. If you enjoy a double cheeseburger classic style burger then this is the place for you.
Is this the best burger in Australia? Double beef brisket & short rib patty, American cheese, special burger sauce, pickles and green oak lettuce. Pink in the patty, this was juicy and perfectly cooked. The patty is premium with good amount of char. I added bacon, in itself superb, but which set off the burger nicely. Soft bun suited the burger with all that meat. And the cheese is a highlight, dripping over the meat. So freaking good.
The most unique burger vibe in Melbourne. Clubhouse meets ski lodge meets house party. You can lose the tie. Longhorns, mongoose, a fire, retro games, and a retro soundtrack makes you feel like you're in another world.
We took the burger out of the box that it was served in for a burger selfie. Dripping goodness! Leonards House of Love should be in any burger love list. There is a house in South Yarra...
Grand Trailer Park Taverna - Bourke St CBD
Grand Trailer Park Taverna is a burger wonderland, cleverly taking up the American East Coast theme of a trailer park and turning it on its head with a killer fit out of booths and trailer structures. Surely this is taking the burger culture to its zenith and is a must visit for burger afficiados in this city. Simply this is the most creative burger joint we've seen in Melbourne. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to the launch but couldn't make it, and so we (Dave and Mario) had the opportunity to visit some weeks later. Had the hype settled down? No chance. On a mild Tuesday early evening this place was pumping.
Grand Trailer Park captures the essence of the American Trailer Park in the fit out but is the antithesis in terms of mood. Trailer Parks in America have a certain romance but are also a place of social challenge. This trailer park is a happy place with compelling dining spaces and an artistic touch. Grand Trailer Park is the masterstroke of Dani Zeini (the man behind the acclaimed Dandenong Pavilion noted for its burger offerings) and Joshua Lefers (design mastermind behind Pawn & Co. and Big Dog Creative).
The Chunk - Double Double is a cracker burger and reminded us of In and Out Burgers in California, and we understand In and Out Burgers are part of the burger inspiration here. The Chunk - Double Double features Two premium Aussie beef patties, double American Cheddar cheese, caramelised onion, jalapenos, diced gherkins, American mustard and tomato sauce, on a lightly toasted brioche bun. The burger comes neatly wrapped in paper a la In and Out burgers, making this massive burger easier to consume. Juicy and rewarding with the pattie the hero - Aussie grass fed beef that gets freshly minced every day. The taste has some heat and kick with the jalapenos and tangy sauce. The balance of the burger is excellent. A contender for best burger of Melbourne.
Tuck Shop Takeaway - Caulfield North
Tuck Shop Takeaway is a killer burger joint in the burbs run by Clinton and Katrina Serex ( ex chefs at Fat Duck with Heston Blumenthal, Attica and Vue De Monde) and is a contender for Melbourne's best burger. No frills here only quality. Walk in to a retro world of burger charm with quirky decor and sensational burgers, with engaging staff. Nostalgia baby.
Buns on the grill. I can imagine it's busy here every day, and we watched as a stack of tradies, hipsters and people of all descriptions made their way in to experience a burger high. Seating is limited but we scored some stools by the window. Staff were engaging, even showing us their tattoos.
The Bully burger from the secret menu is world class and is a double; featuring double beef patty, double cheese, bacon, jalapeños and Sriracha hot sauce, all inside a milk brioche bun. The meat patty is a special blend made up daily from some of the best grass fed beef in the world from Victoria's Gippsland. With perfect char the meat is a high note. Light seasoning only takes place on the grill. Of course the meat is perfectly juicy and pink inside.
The warming heat of The Bully creeps up on you; this is a rewarding burger with high quality ingrediennts and superb balance. Arguably Melbourne's best burger.
The Double Major and the Minor burger also feature quality Otway free range bacon and lettuce, onions, tomato, pickles, secret Tuckshop Takeaway sauce, American cheese (plus you can order an egg). How good is it? Surprisingly filling due to the 100% beef pattie and the brioche bun, not to mention the bacon and cheese oozing over the meat. When you bite into the burger you just go "Yes!" and groan. Juicy goodness with beef pattie cooked to perfection... Chips at Tuck Shop Takeaway are thrice cooked and were superbly moorish. We thought thrice cooked chips would be "dry as goat's knees" but not so. Crispy and golden on the outside and some tenderness inside. Some of our favourite chips in Melbourne.
Cafe 51 - South Melbourne
Cafe 51 is an eclectic iconic cult burger joint in a semi industrial area, where lines out the door are the norm and all walks of life are flocking to this burger haven.
Made famous by iconic Melbourne burgers site Burgers of Melbourne who was one of the first to visit Cafe 51 and herald the credentials of these awesome burgers, there's a star studded line up of burgers including the Meataxe, the Juicy Lucy, The Mac Daddy, Soul Sister, The Boss, CFK, or go custom made... In terms of burger joints in Melbourne this is a broad ranging burger menu with something for everyone. Including shakes and salads, the menu on boards. The Instagram feed of Cafe 51 is a work of art; burger stacks streaming down a page that makes you drool.
The World Loves Melbourne was keen to visit, and we just wanted to sample the best burger of the house. We were told upon our visit that The Meataxe was the pick of a great list; juicy Gigi beef patty, crispy southern fried chicken, crispy bacon, double dirty cheese, lettuce, onion rings, two jalapeno poppers, chipotle and XXX BBQ sauce. Now there's a description. We enjoy burgers with kick or heat, and the Meataxe seemed the way to go.
The Meataxe came as a massive tower served on a sturdy board. We found it hard to put your hands around this burger; really it's a beast. Burger challenges at Cafe 51 are known to involve 3kg of burger with 20 patties and cheese. There's an opportunity to put yourself in comatose burger oblivion!
Every element of The Meataxe was spot on from the crispy southern fried chicken fillet to the juicy chuck brisket patty to the crispy bacon and the heat elements that gave the kick. Even the soft bun rocked. It's tempting to take the bun off the top and pick at the various elements, but we recommend tackling The Meataxe head on and biting into this juicy bliss as a whole burger in all its glory!
The World Loves Melbourne loves Cafe 51 for the sheer fun of the place. For some reason when I think of Cafe 51 I also think of Studio 54 in LA; eclectic, fun and a venue for the people. Boogie fever and burger fever. We saw business types in their suits, student types, tradies, bloggers with cameras, and all manner of people coming together in the name of burger love. Maybe world conflicts could be sorted by burger joints like this appearing in troubled regions. In the meantime we shall be back...
Royal Stacks - Collins St CBD
Royal Stacks is a winning burger house with packed houses each day lapping up the juicy burgers that contain local produce and free of GMO. The World Loves Melbourne caught up with owner Dani Zeini who researches burgers from all round the world, and delivers to Melbourne inspired burger choices. We couldn't make it to the media launch but went slightly later and there was a line up out the door at Monday lunchtime.
Dani has been working at Royal Stacks and ensuring the team get the quality right throughout; and we were highly impressed with the burger offerings. It seems each of Dani's ventures has its own personality and menu. Dani told us he also likes hanging out at Grand Trailer Park and the location are top notch. This location of Royal Stacks in Collins St is also top notch with nearby law firms, banks and creatives salivating.
Check out the American Diner vibe, with TV's mounted playing US Sports a la sports bar. We love the urban wall garden and neon sign; like an upmarket Diner. The burgers are sensational; not surprising given Dani's expertise but also the meat patties are supplied from premium producer Vic Meats. You can tell the quality.
Another smash hit is the ‘Bacon Bacon’ with double all Australian pasture fed beef patties, double bacon, American cheddar, caramelised onion, American mustard, tomato sauce and pickles. Juicy and elegant. A crowd pleaser with it's sheer amount of quality beef, as well as bacon overdrive. What the punters want.
Stagger Lees - Brunswick St Fitzroy
Stagger Lees is an exceptional cafe and delivers when it comes to burgers. Having eaten scores of burgers around Melbourne I found the Stack & Billy Burger to be one of the best around. A chart topper featuring Black Angus shin patty, bacon, American mustard, catsup, aioli, pickles and cheddar served with bacon croquettes and greens. The balance of flavours is perfect. The patty is magical. Brioche buns are a great texture and mild sweetness. Much thought has gone into this burger including killer aoli, quality pickles and cheddar. Please remind me to put this burger in my "Best burgers of Melbourne" section. Kudos to Head Chef Chris Hamburger (do I say the obvious?)...
The burger comes with amazing creamy croquettes that are almost a meal in themselves. When I said to the waitress, "Wow, I didn't realise these amazing croquettes come with the burger!" she said "Read the damn menu." But she said it in a playful kind of way that didn't offend. Banter in Brunswick...
Huxtaburger - Smith Street Collingwood & Various
Huxtaburger is a contender for Melbourne's best burger. Just across the road from the epic Huxtable restaurant on Smith Street is this popular burger joint that delivers big time on quality gourmet burgers, great crinkle cut chips and beer. A killer combination. The value here is incredible and might just get you through the latest Global Financial Crisis.
Huxtaburger has done its homework on what makes a great burger. They simply have great buns. Glazed brioche buns. The burger bun melts in the mouth. You don't get that heavy starchy hit of bread but rather the bun combines wonderfully with the rest of the burger.
At huxtaburger there is also a tie in with the Cosby show. The "Theo" with the double pattie and double cheese caters for those that love a huge mother of a burger - and it's the one I've imbibed on many occasions.
Saint Barry - Surry Hills
Saint Barry is a refreshing new eatery on Whitehorse Rd Surrey Hills, serving modern Australian cuisine featuring shared plates including awesome burgers. With a top chef Spyros Vrakas (ex Hellenic Republic and Press Club) the food is savvy and modern.
The Beef Burger with crispy prosciuuto chips and 2 year aged Merino cheese made into a gold cream with tomato and chips is stunning. This is a gourmet burger and unique in Melbourne. The quality patty (local produce is king at Saint Barry) is complemented cleverly by crunchy prosciutto. And the cheese is not just standard burger cheese but 2 year aged Merino cheese made into a cream for a touch of class.
The tomato and lettuce proves a refreshing balance against the richness of the burger. A top notch bun caps off a first class burger. Check out some of their other shared dishes such as the Grilled salmon, Lamb riblets, Fish and chips, Calamari and amazing Haloumi chips. With craft beers and ciders and bespoke wines, this is a foodie haven. A killer courtyard adds to the ambience with superb design by Adele Bates design.
Lounge Kitchen - Swanston St CBD
Lounge Kitchen is an iconic venue in the CBD and we've visited several times over the years, lapping up its charm. In recent times it has reinvented itself. Walk up the stairs off Swanston Street into a cool ambience of dark timbers, various dining spaces, mood lighting, plants and character booths. Quintessential Melbourne we say. They even have tables on the standout balcony overlooking Swanston Street (best in Melbourne?). This is a perfect place to dine out with your work colleagues; a place with atmosphere that delivers on quality affordable dishes, and has engaging service. As one blogger put it, "It's nice to get some change in your pocket."
Lounge Kitchen and Bar is a rewarding lunch (and dinner) destination but also a superb live venue with loads of live entertainment. It's been a popular venue for work teams including our own department lunch at one stage; with several CBD worker groups imbibing lunch here as we enjoyed our latest dining experience.
Lounge has recently launched an exciting new Classic Cheeseburger featuring fresh made bun in-house, 200g Black Angas Beef Patty (150 day grain fed and dry aged in-house for 21 days), Swiss Cheese, Pickles, Ketchup and Classic American Mustard. The Classic Cheeseburger with fries is only $11.50 - a great deal! Image: The Melbourne Cheapskate.
The World Loves Melbourne is a fan of their 9 lunches for $9 menu (12-3pm Monday to Friday). Dishes include a BLT Cheeseburger, Mushroom Risotto, Grilled Chicken Salad, Thai Red Curry, Roast Duck, Red Wine Beef Ragout, Pot Pie of the Day, and Fish and Chips. These are all favourites with something for everyone. We were also excited about the $5 Shoe string fries and the $5 Garden Salad to complement.
Hello Sam - Chapel St South Yarra
Hello Sam has an impressive backstory, with the owner Katherine Sampson having risen from a small shopping centre business to a savvy burger sensation in South Yarra. At the end of Chapel St not far from Richmond, Hello Sam is a light in this foodie precinct with its massive quality burgers and attractive ambience. Burgers should speak for themselves without hype, and these burgers speak volumes.
The menu at Hello Sam is top notch in satisfying tastes for all including beef, chicken, veggie, lamb and fish. Clever names abound such as Chipotle Bandido, Sam-On (with Salmon), the Parme-Sam, as well as Sam-Brero. Behind the quirk of the names is an authenticity of flavours.
For those who love a big stack Hello Sam has it covered. The Sam the Man Double is a massive burger that hardly fitted into my Instagram frame forcing me backwards to capture the dimensions of the burger in my photo. Yes the burger forced me backwards! The patties are char grilled and exude thick meaty goodness, not overcooked but juicy. We naturally gravitate to The Big Sam's part of the menu - where you can enjoy up to 3 patties in your burger. Size does matter when it comes to burgers but quality must match. Hello Sam prides itself on the finest and freshest of ingredients including Angus patties.
The Bean burger is perfect for those not keen on a meat fest. For those who want some kick, the heat on the Spicy Sam burger is perfect thanks to jalapenos and fiery harissa. Hello Sam boast simple modern decor and an impressive outside area with heaters for the cold. Or try the Too Cheesy which lives up to its name with a mustard mayo cheddar ale melt. We note 2 mustards in the mustard mayo and the sheer cheesy joy in this burger. One of the best Cheeseburgers in Melbourne.
Brother Burger and The Marvellous Brew - Brunswick St
Brother Burger and The Marvellous Brew in Brunswick St is one of the best burger joints in Melbourne for the discerning burger afficiado. Come here for large rewarding juicy burgers with interesting fillings and decent fries and sides, plus enjoy the excellent marriage of burgers to quality craft beers. Gloriously, The World Loves Melbourne was able to easily find parking out the front of this burger joint. We walked into a burger joint with a presence, a stately building of character and space with large windows. Marcelo Tummino (who was the man behind The European and The Supper Club) offers the punters a great burger experience.
Brother Burger felt like a burger brotherhood. They have the burger culture nailed... Brother Burger has a burger to cater for every taste. For those who enjoy The Lot your hunger will be satisfied with a plethora of quality ingredients and their wonderful 100% Wagyu patty. The Oh Brother is another compelling option with double patty action. Bean Around is a savvy Vegan option, while Magic Mushie caters for the Vegetarian. Chicky Babe delivers with free range chicken while Hey Ewes! offers a lamb patty. Then there's Pig Out with pork patty, the Royal Blue with blue cheese, and The Jane cheeseburger. Clever burger names. And the menu keeps on giving with Fitzroy Reuben, High Steaks, BLT, and salads, to name a few other options. As I said, Brother Burger caters for all tastes!
As for The World Loves Melbourne we were in the mood for Hot Stuff, featuring the 100% Wagyu beef patty, double bacon, cheese, house made pickles, mustard-mayo and chilli jam. With jalapenos on the side to regulate your heat...
One Plus Piece Cafe - Balwyn
One Plus Piece Cafe in Balwyn hits the high notes with brilliant food and fine coffee, all with an Asian twist. The World Loves Melbourne loves a playful cafe and One Piece Plus delivers with its Japanese anime theme.
One Plus Piece Cafe is located in a premium pocket of Whitehorse Road in Balwyn, with banks, eateries and high end shops surrounding. The decor at One Plus Piece Cafe is lively with an assortment of figurines displayed on the wall, animation characters painted on one wall, posters, plants, books and other quirky objects, as Melbourne loves all things quirk. Playful and fun!
One Plus Piece Cafe is super popular for its burgers; our favourite is the Double chilli beef, double bacon, double cheese, caramelised onion, mushroom, lettuce and their secret One Piece sauce. This burger is juicy bliss from the"get go". Soft brioche melts into double of everything; how we like it! The house made patty with chilli is outstanding and has that welcome kick to it. Cheese is also a standout, melted over the patty bliss. Double bacon is not to be underestimated and generous portion hits the spot. Caramelised onion also generous and with the lettuce provides some crunch. Mushroom in the mix makes this a hearty substantial burger, but it's the taste and texture high that impressed. The secret sauce is sensational adding to the already great burger. A pleasure to eat such a burger.
We also enjoyed the Angas beef and cheese burger in a brioche bun with beetroot relish, tomato, lettuce, bacon, mustard and aoli. The balance of the burger was excellent and for us the burger was full of flavour. The richness of the Angas beef was evident in a seasoned patty. The burger was mouth watering with right amount of sauces, and some kick. Fresh lettuce was crispy, as was the bacon. The brioche brought a hint of sweetness and the gherkin on top was a nice touch. Presentation was superb on a board with pirate flag and golden chips.
These burgers are One Plus Piece Cafe are not greasy affairs; but clean and flavoursome and well presented.
JD's Burgers - Mont Albert (new location)
JDs Burgers in Mont Albert is a delightful burger joint that offers unique Asian fusion flavours and is one of the best burger houses in Melbourne. These are juicy melt in your mouth burgers with much thought (and presumably testing) put into the various burgers. Word about JDs has spread in the burger world and an invited visit by The World Loves Melbourne didn't disappoint. We couldn't get over just how many burgers are on offer here - something like 15 fusion burgers.
Then it was on to the main game. The Mighty Beef Burger is the most popular burger at JDs, and is super juicy with a sensational tasty seasoning in the meat pattie. The brioche bun was soft and fresh, and the burger came with generous pattie, bacon, caramelised onion, lettuce, cheese tomato and JDs special sauces. With the pattie cooked medium with slight pink, and a soft patty, the advent of melted cheese made for a burger of sheer melted juicy pleasure. The tomato and bacon were also worthy ingredients in this excellent burger. Despite the juiciness of the burger it still kept together during the eating process and didn't fall apart. No wonder it's their most popular burger. Check out the Aussie flag on top of the burger.
Interestingly having celebrated The Mighty Beef Burger we fell in love with the second most popular burger at JDs Burgers - the Ultimate Black Pepper Beef Burger. This had a tang and a kick we found irresistable. This burger is unique to the Melbourne burger scene and features French brioche bun, black pepper sauce, special JDs mayo, American cheese, grilled bacon, mushrooms, caramelised onion, lettuce and tomato. The combination of flavours is brilliant. Nothing is overpowering and it all comes together superbly. Again this is a juicy rewarding burger. Black pepper and beef are an excellent fusion combination.
Daniel an entrepreneur and Brenda his sister (who hosted us during our visit) are energetic people that are passionate about burgers and fusion flavours. They pride themselves on quality control and every element must be fresh and top notch. The Grandmother is involved in pattie and sauce recipes handed down. The cafe also does a great job with coffee (we sampled first hand) and their cakes, as well as other cafe treats.
Mr Burger - Therry St CBD and Food Truck
Melbourne has a love affair with Mr Burger, often paying a visit to a food truck to satisfy a late night hunger. I've been grateful so many times for the truck stationed in Fed Square. Love these big gooey burgers with soft bun and patty as the hero. Mr Burger's Therry St store opened in November 2012 with their first food truck parked inside the former mechanics workshop. As bookings increased, the truck was sent back on the road and has been replaced by a 20-foot shipping container with a fully functioning kitchen. The new store's cooking capacity has increased thanks to a larger grill, and the dining area now offers seating for 45-plus burger-eaters.
“We’re very happy with the new renovations, and think they'll make the Mr Burger experience even better. We’ve addressed two of the main customer requests: the need for more seating and less wait time, as well as making the space more inviting and comfortable to be in”, says owner Myles Munro.
Caffe La Via - Glenferrie Rd Malvern
Caffe La Via is a serious burger desination with The Wolfer burger a world class burger, and a range of burgers to suit all tastes. The vibe at Caffe La Via is elegant yet relaxed dining with several compelling dining spaces to suit couples, groups and even functions.
The Wolfer burger is epic: ticking all the boxes of juicy double Wagyu burger with oozing cheese, crisp lettuce, wonderful char, lightly seasoned, soft bun, secret sauce, caramelised onions. Around 300g of patty is generous. The Wolfer is awesome with a basket of thick cut golden chips. Seriously this is one of the best burgers in Melbourne. Not only is it large and tasty but The Wolfer buger is well balanced. Chef Rajat uses his experience from The Merrywell to create something in the top echelon of Melbourne burgers.
There's a whole range of burgers to suit tastes including the popular La Via Burger: Activated charcoal black La Madre bun, Grilled wagyu with a touch of spice, crispy cos, tomato, fried egg, caramelised onion and cheddar; as well as Veggie Burger, The Texan and the popular Soft Shell Crab Burger. A killer wine list adds to the experience as not many restaurants featured in this article have an extensive and affordable wine list. You can enjoy a soft drink or a beer with your burger, but also top notch wines from premium regions by the glass or bottle.
Tree of Us - Church Street North Richmond
Tree of Us is a cafe/restaurant sensation and a great find in the uber precinct of North Richmond. Being familiar with many of the cafes along Bridge Road and indeed throughout Richmond I am always looking for a cafe that stands out from the pack. I can throw a blanket across several and only a handful rise into the outstanding category. Tree of Us is a breath of fresh air with its understated charm and foodie gourmet excellence.
Image of Stelios Burger: Tree of Us Instagram.
Tree of Us is visually appealing and has a cool ambience. Check out the incredible street art along the side of the building by artist Putos, who has a great skill in painting animals street art style.
The Stelios is like 2 burgers in one and has some real heat! Tree of Us is an exciting foodie and sustainable cafe restaurant in the north part of Richmond that I intend to visit again soon. Check out their Facebook page.
Rockpool Bar and Grill - Crown Casino
Rockpool Bar and Grill is a fine dining haven in the Crown Casino and is known for its spectacular meat dishes and the culinary genius of Neil Perry. The conversation around here is all about "dry-aged", "grass-fed", "rib-eye" and of course "wagyu". In fact it's the David Blackmore Wagyu that drew me here. Could this be Melbourne's best burger?
Rockpool has a modern fit out with high ceilings, great use of timber panelling, subtle mood lighting, large artwork tributes to the humble cow, several attractive dining areas and luxurious tables and chairs. What struck me about Rockpool was the finery and great use of textures. The ambience here is refined yet relaxed. Waiters dressed impeccably attend to your dining needs and are engaging and knowledgeable.
The meat here is sourced from Australia's best producers and dry aged on the premises. Rockpool are strict about humane treatment of cattle and about no hormones or antibiotic feed supplements. Rockpool features Blackmore's Wagyu, Greenhams and Rangers Valley meat. It's the best of the best. Now to the burger... Caramelised heaven. Wagyu heaven.
Rockpool has smashed a home run with this David Blackmore Wagyu Burger in terms of quality, taste and balance. My first impression was that this is a work of art and a celebration of the hamburger. Secondly I was amazed at how big this burger actually is. I was expecting a smaller burger as is the trend. This was actually a meal to satisfy your lunch craving. Along with say, some hand cut chips.
And I aim to be back for more Rockpool fare...
Rockwell and Sons - Smith Street
Rockwell and Sons provides American style soul (comfort, dude) food in Smith St and has one of the most acclaimed burgers in town with the Double patty smash burger. Another contender for best burger in Melbourne but not the mainstay of their imaginative menu.
Rockwell and Sons has a modern fit out with chic timber framing, funky lighting and exposed brick walls. Rockwell also pours a mean latte...
Rockwell and Sons offers "dude" food gems such as Southern Fried chicken sandwich, Rib sandwich, cheese dumplings, Lamb dog, Calamari roll with pickles, or even a delectable Lamb shoulder... But the star of the show is the Rockwell Double patty smash burger of rock star fame...
The Double patty smash burger consists of a sexy brioche bun from Brasserie Bread (important to have great bun), excellent juicy patty action, cheddar cheese drooled all over the meat, crunch gherkins and a killer sauce. For mine it's the sauce that makes it... This sauce reputedly includes 3 different kinds of mayo. So good. The burger is a triumph of juicy melted and crunchy bliss! and the price point is kind to the wallet.
The burgers are better at Rockwell and Sons...
Rockwell also boats amazing home made french fries with aoli... Critical to get this right when you've got a rock star burger.
The logo is a classic... Rockwell and Sons is highly recommended for unpretentious dude food with great vibe and at a reasonable price in a cool part of Smith St.
Lord of the Fries - Brunswick Street and 6 Other Locations
These guys are super popular and have a cult following. Lord of the Fries is an award winning restaurant group that delivers incredible vegetarian flavoursome food and modern tastes at value prices. Even Prince has enjoyed their cuisine on his last Australian tour (several music icons dig LOTF). Having sampled the burgers here - they are a strong contender for the best in Melbourne. Bring on the vegetarian burger for 21st century tastes!
I love the multicultural flavour of Lord of the Fries with its different sauces and tastes celebrating nations and their cuisine. Very Melbourne methinks.
Lord of the Fries began from humble beginnings visiting music festivals in a mobile van to an icon in Melbourne with many stores. They are growing with new stores established recently and stores where there's a funky vibe and extra room to enjoy their fine fare. We enjoyed lunch at the iconic Brunswick Street store - a retro style diner. Prince enjoyed and inspired a Purple Rain sauce but here it's more of a red haze. Lord of the Fries has a striking red theme - I really enjoy their marketing and Facebook page.
A burger we greatly enjoyed was The Guru, with Guru vegie patty, tomato, onion, lettuce, and green chilli sauce. I love this burger, with plenty of spice (it has more kick than other places). The green chilli sauce is a winner.
We ordered two of the mini burgers - the original and the spicy mini burger. These were delightful and are a great option amid the mini burger craze around Melbourne right now.
Image above from Lord of the Fries Instagram.
Lord of the Fries hits the spot and is an edgy eatery that ticks so many boxes in terms of concept, quality, freshness and taste. We look forward to their continue growth and expansion in Melbourne and beyond.
The Merrywell - Crown
The Merrywell is a fabulous spacious restaurant in the Southbank precinct near the Crown that serves up American style diner dude food. It's a stylish establishment that also exudes a sense of fun.
The Merrywell is a great place to meet up with people over a drink and a burger - as we discovered. When we arrived at around 4.30pm on a weekday it was relatively busy then it seemed to explode in the next half hour as over 100 people streamed in (at the end of the work day). Suddenly the place was packed with cityworkers clustered around the bar and around the tables overlooking the promendade... The noise levels rose and it was a happening venue...
Not only is there a burger wave/trend in Melbourne but a trend towards the American diner concept. Having been to America I understand the excitement over burgers. I'm grateful we have moved from burgers mainly at fast food joints and local fish and chip shops - to the gourmet offerings of today.
The Merrywell has a simple but pleasing menu with burger highlights such as the above "The Merrywell" burger. For $20 it's a tad pricy on the Melbourne burger scene but you get a large burger with thick juicy quality meat patty, delectable cheese melted all over, lettuce, onions, sauce, crispy bacon and excellent tangy pickles. All in a large soft bun. And the burger comes with delicious golden chips/fries.
Service here is engaging and friendly, and staff are on their game. You do however need to order at the counter. (I haven't dined upstairs yet but I understand it's a step up in finery).
As we left The Merrywell two helicopters launched from the adjacent pad across the Yarra - reminding us that The Merrywell is in an upmarket part of town. The Merrywell is a restaurant I'd like to return to, for its simple but tasty burgers and its top notch ambience.
Grill'd - multi locations
Grill’d Healthy Burgers has opened on Station Street in Fairfield with a bang, having offered 100 free burgers to customers. The World Loves Melbourne went along to check out the scene and we enjoyed the modern fit out of the spacious store with its trendy tiling, use of timbers and even a planter box.
We also enjoyed the burgers (perennial favourites in Melbourne for us) and the brilliant kids boxes for our children. The Mighty Melbourne Burger has been a favourite of mine for years, but also the Baa Baa burger and Hot Mama are right up there in Melbourne's best burger territory. Not to mention some of the best chips in Melbourne with herbs and killer aoli options.
Grill’d founder Simon Crowe said the Fairfield restaurant will more than satisfy the demand for healthy, convenient food options in the area. “Grill’d is more than just a great tasting, healthy burger restaurant. We place a huge emphasis on offering a great environment where people of all ages can enjoy a fresh and convenient meal in a casual environment with their friends and family,” he said.
Grill’d stocks an exciting alcohol range including local craft beers and ciders – the perfect accompaniment for any of the menu’s 30 fresh, and healthy options including 100% grass fed, hormone free beef and lamb, chicken and vegetarian burgers as well as a range of salads and steak sandwiches.
While Grill’d has experienced significant growth in recent years - the new Fairfield restaurant marks the 28th in Victoria - Simon says they’re not interested in developing a “big company” attitude, and each restaurant remains focused on local community initiatives.
Danny's Burgers - St Georges Road
For a true Melbourne experience one has to imbibe the joys of Danny’s Burgers on St Georges Rd. The sign says “since 1945”. Wow! This is an institution. I loved every minute of my experience here.
You need to come with the right attitude and “get into it.” This is old school burgers done with charisma and love. The burgers are fantastic evoking memories of the best fish and chip shop hamburgers but better. It’s better because the burgers are nicely layered so you can eat them without them falling apart. Well put together buns, egg, bacon, a great patty with proper grill taste.
Danny’s are famous for the double and triple lot hamburgers. They are enough to fill the hungriest mouths. And they are made at 1950’s prices! Great value dinner option for the family.
Don’t underestimate the chips here. You get a great pile of chips for your money. And they are nice and crispy. Danny’s has some other great options including lamb burgers, open burgers with greek salad and chips and much more. People also rave about the chicken burgers. Seating is limited to the counter but there is a great area with a few tables on the pavement. We soaked in the atmosphere of cosmopolitan St Georges Rd on a warm night.
Burger Lounge - Eltham
The Burger Lounge rocks. Are these the best gourmet burgers in Melbourne? Many of my friends think so.
Burger Lounge ticks so many boxes and in fact redefines the gourmet burger. The burgers are large, made with healthy ingredients, and the flavour combinations are amazing. These guys were voted ib Nova radio competition as the best burgers in Melbourne.
I’ve driven for an hour through Melbourne peak hour traffic just to get the family burgers here. In fact turning around and coming back down the main street of Eltham can be tricky in peak hour. The place itself has a great vibe and is colourful and modern. A great option is to actually eat in, even for groups.
The Burger Lounge is so refreshing in terms of menu choices and gets it so right. Reading the menu is fascinating as burger descriptions are like reading a menu from a top fine dining establishment.
The Signature Burger is a sensation and includes 100% beef prime organic pattie with harvati cheese, basted with balsamic glaze, pickled cucumber, red onion, lettuce, tomato, relish and herb aioli.
The Kofta Burger with a lamb pattie is another sensation and the pinenuts and Moroccan spice are great gourmet touches.
My wife loves the pumpkin burger with homemade roasted pumkinand kumera pattie with feta, walnuts and basil pesto, covered in Japanese panko breadcrumbs, spinach leaves, beetroot relish and aoli. Great flavours.
The prices are extremely reasonable with these huge gourmet burgers about $12. A lot of thought has gone into this. They offer organic meats. The coffee is also great at Burger Lounge – from 5 Senses. The herb chips are amazing. Everyone talks about the chips. They also have a really successful chicken shop nearby in Eltham.
Ziggy's Eatery - Carlisle St St Kilda
Ziggy's Eatery is a highly impressive modern burger joint on Carlisle St St Kilda that specialises in gourmet burgers and dude food at excellent value. These are not burgers slapped together but you get the impression of a kitchen of skilfull and passionate foodies that care for their customers. We were impressed at the high level cuisine here and the resonating passion of the owners. They simply serve some of the best burgers in town. The World Loves Melbourne was invited as a guest of Ziggy's.
Check out the Texan Giant Burger at Ziggy's as one of the best in Melbourne. It ticks all my burger boxes. The bun is critical to any burger, and where some burger joints in Melbourne fall down. Ziggy's offers a fresh soft brioche of high quality. Next, the meat patty is quality beef with right amount of seasoning and is a giant 250g. Not for the faint hearted!
Aoli is excellent adding to the flavour of the burger, together with a killer Texan sauce. Not to mention the tomato, cheese, onion and lettuce of quality. Overall juiciness factor was high. Unapologetically I prefer a juicy burger to a dry one. The combination of flavours just works here. A burger to reckon with.
Ziggy's is an all round dude food destination of note. Even the chicken wings with 3 types of tangy sauce hit the mark... Especially with a Mexican beer...
Ziggy's has an attractive fit out with edgy artwork adorning the walls. The use of timber is attractive including a large communal table. Or eat outside and enjoy the ambience of bustling Carlisle Street.
We found this restaurant to be family friendly. Our kids loved the food here, and especially the burgers. The menu is broad and has something for everyone.
The World Loves Melbourne was highly impressed with Ziggy's Eatery and plans to return soon. A revelation and highly recommended.
Andrews Hamburgers - Albert Park
Andrew's Hamburgers is a super impressive burger joint that knows what it's doing (since 1939), offering great burgers at value prices. Andrew's Hamburgers has a superb customer focus with service with the lot - engaging staff, great menu options and reasonable prices - that keeps customers returning.
Andrew's Hamburgers seems to be the toast of Victoria with visits by celebrities, sporting personalities, the Masterchef judges with their photo on the wall, and many people of our city that have been visiting for years.
Andrew's Hamburgers makes traditional, as distinct from nouveau burgers. You can get yourself an egg and bacon roll or a chicken burger, for example. But the popular choice is the hamburger with the lot.
I enjoyed the famous burger with the lot for a value price plus chips ($2 for a mini). For a start the burger is large. It takes two hands for sure to handle this mother.
The buns are fresh and quality - very important for a good burger. The bacon and egg (cooked in rings) is quality, the lettuce fresh and crunchy, the cheddar cheese wonderfully melted and the burger has the right amount of sauce and fried onion. The star of the show is of course the patty which is quality beef. I felt I could detect some sublime seasoning coming from the patty.
The burger is delicious and they get the balance of elements right. You feel like the burger is neither heavy nor greasy.
And the chips have that crispiness that people want.
Image above: Andrews Hamburgers Instagram. The staff here are fantastic and add to the experience. They love what they do. There's a team of guys all wearing Andrews Hamburger's T shirts. I was surprised my eat in burger arrived on a silver tray. I wasn't fumbling around with paper.
If you eat in (limited seating) you will be amazed at how many people come through this place in a short time, even on a supposedly quiet Saturday afternoon.
I noticed families arriving and looking over the photos on the wall that include celebrities posing with owner Greg Pappas.
I can see why people love this place. While I love a nouveau burger I also love that traditional hamburger that's done well. Andrew's Hamburgers has been setting a high standard for decades and are still shining as ever.
The Royale Brothers - Brighton
The Royale Brothers was founded by the boys from The Pantry in Brighton, Daniel Vaughan, Guy Mainwaring and Tim Purton-Smith, burger royalty themselves.After squeezing past a late model Mercedes double parked in the nearby car park in Brighton, The World Loves Melbourne was invited to see what all the fuss was about at Royale Brothers.
The Royale Brothers construct and tailor various burgers from their menu to suit a plethora of tastes. Large burgers with massively wide buns sit alongside regular and spicy burgers, and imaginative fillings such as pork shoulder and crispy fish. Then there's the Hippy Royale with Panko crumbed pinto bean patty, house slaw, avocado, mayo, tomato & pickles.
Two big milk bun burger sellers are the ROYALE WITH CHEESE feauting Beef, cheese, onion, lettuce, pickles, mustard, mayo & Royale sauce for$12, and BACON ROYALE featuring Beef, bacon, double cheese, tomato, onion, lettuce, pickles, mustard, mayo & Royale sauce for $14.
My preference was for the Bacon Royale, a popular seller. Royale Brothers use a unique milk bun which is soft but less sweet than brioche. My first bite drew me into the world of Royale Brothers burger awesomeness, with the alluring softness of the bun, juicy thick meat patty, stunner pickles, fresh lettuce, generous melted cheese placed where it should be, delightful onions, and right amount of sauce (you can select from a range of Famous Royale spicy tomato sauce, aoli, onion gravy, jalapeno salsa, and Coney Island cocktail sauce).
The Royale Brothers is at the zenith of burgerdom in Melbourne with its generous but well balanced burgers, diversity and customisation. And affordability is to be celebrated, with most regualr options around $12 currently, not like some other burger joints who charge around $20 for a burger.
Trunk Diner - CBD
Every self respecting dude food haven needs a killer burger, and Trunk delivers. This is a standout from the pack - using premium ingredients. I found it to be one of the best in Melbourne. The foundation is -
The joy was in the Supersizing of doubling everything! Yeah baby! Rock and roll.
The cheese melts down on the juicy Wagyu...
And every dude food lover knows chips have to be top notch - these are golden and crispy. Always a good sign when your first movement is to grab some hot chips - but then you can't stop picking at them...
YOMG - Glen Waverley
The Creeper at YOMG is arguably the best burger in Melbourne. Soft bun, with Double beef (100% Angas beef grass fed and house made, massive patties), triple cheese (decadent overdrive), double bacon, onion, jalapeno jam (packs some kick), jalapenos and Sriracha Mayo (a creamy hot sauce). You know you're alive when you take on this burger. The name of The Creeper is apt as it creeps up on you with surprising heat, but also as being a massive burger you may struggle to complete. It also creeps up on you to win you over. So good!
YOMG is known for frozen yoghurt but is also now famous for burgers; the Glen Waverley store is pumping all the time.
1090 Burger - Richmond
1090 Burger is a standout burger joint on Swan street Richmond having started out in life as a food truck (still going strong in Ruckers Hill Northcote); boasting quality affordable burgers and is the home of the notorius Rocky burger. 1090 Burger is unpretentious in a world of burger hype. No fanfare here; no heralding or trumpeting. The proof is in the pudding, or should we say "patty"; all massive 330g of it.
The custom 1090 burger is a double burger for only $12 and great value;soft brioche bun holds beef, cheese, mayo, ketchup, mustard, pickles, lettuce, tomato and red onion. 1090 Burger also impresses with the Thunderburger for $13 - a double burger of note featuring grass fed Angas Beef and top notch with beer. If you want to satisfy your burger craving the 1090 burger and Thunderburger are both up there with the best. But why not live a little dangerously and step out into deeper burger waters...
Go a few rounds with Rocky. If you're into heavy patties man then this is your place. No 100g patty to be seen for the Rocky. Not 150g or even 180g, but an insane 330g.
So if you order the Rocky you're told you have to wait about 25 minutes for the patty to cook - the same amount of time it takes The World Loves Melbourne to cook a BBQ for 10 friends (and clean the BBQ after).
Even so the patty comes out suitably "medium" and juicy, not at all overcooked. The "juiciness" factor is insane; it's like your baby kid just sprayed all down your front (in a good way).
That's if you can lift the burger - a deadlift at the gym might not be so heavy.
The Rocky burger seemed more like Rocky IV than other Rocky movies I've seen; the burger comes at you with full intimidation like a monster Drago, but get your revenge even if it takes you a few pile driving rounds.
Rocky comes fully loaded with the 330g patty perfectly seasoned, loads of caramelised onion, loads of secret sauce, loads of crispy bacon and cheese, all in proportion and balanced. And of course pickles for some zesty respite. A soft bun is on point and it looked slightly toasted for mine.
We loved Rocky. Even if we were waiting ringside for 25 minutes for him to appear...
Staff at 1090 (pronounced ten ninety) Burger are super friendly and proud of the burgers.
We didn't eat any of the famous golden fries or milkshakes as we were on our way to a burger event and we needed room for more burgers. Cause we are hardcore. Get on it!
Three One 2 One - Richmond
Three One 2 One on Bridge Road Richmond has been bringing it's A grade burger game to Melbourne, with a new selection of burgers hitting the menu. Bridge Rd is again on the rise and is finding its burger mojo.
Krishna the owner of Three One 2 One (Richmond postcode if you hadn't worked it out) is enigmatic and full of energy, passionate about burgers and willing to push new boundaries. His fun and playful burger and shakes menu is something to behold; no boring choices here. Brennan from Burgers of Melbourne has been involved also, bringing his sage burger advice and expertise. The World Loves Melbourne was invited along to savour the exciting burger range.
Krishna is attracting burger afficiados from far and wide with his quality and fun burger selection. There's also a percentage of the profits going to Save the African Rhino Foundation of Australia Inc. Eat burgers and save Rhinos!
The Ghetto burger was our favourite - a double burger featuring Two beef patties with melted cheddar cheese, pickled cucumber and special mayonnaise on brioche. It's a crowd pleaser with compelling patties and spot on cheese melt, with tang of the pickled cucumber and rockin' mayo. Not to mention a soft brioche bun. How we like it.
Also hitting home runs was the Grilled Heaven Burger featuring Grilled chicken pieces with avocado, sundried tomato, fior de latte mozzarella, spinach and honey mustard aoli on brioche. We love seeing burger houses step it up with gourmet ingredients in burgers, and the words "fior de latte mozzarella" are not often associated with burgers. Neither do sundried tomatoes and honey mustard aoli usually get a look in. Krishna is playing solid covers drives here with flair and panache.
Also packing a punch was the Los Pollos Hermanos (pictured above bottom right) with Panko crumbed chicken breast with crispy prosciutto and mushroom creamy sauce on brioche. Again Krishna delights with gourmet combinations; panko crumbed chicken and crispy prosciutto is the perfect match. Comments at our table were around the deliciousness of the mushroom sauce.
Burgers at Three One 2 One are sizeable and affordable...
Damoforce smashed his own beast of a burger creation on the night, which combined a couple of the burgers on the menu...
The World Loves Melbourne was impressed by the quality of burgers and the overall fun playful vibe of Three One 2 One. Get on it!
And the winner? For mine I enjoy Leonards House of Love, Rockwell & Sons, Rockpool Bar and Grill, Tuck Shop Take Away, Huxtaburger, YOMG and Tree of Us as the major standouts, but it's a personal preference. All should be celebrated.