The Merrywell

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Merrywell – Cr Clarendon Street & Crown Riverside, Southbank, Victoria, Australia
The Merrywell Burger
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Would we recommend:
Go Now!
$20 inc. fries

There might just be a new shiny jewel in Melbourne’s “Crown”. American born Chefs Sam DeMarco (D Man) and Grant MacPherson (G Mac) recently opened the doors of their newest casual dining gastro-pub, “The Merrywell”. Cross diner, cross pub they’re offering some good ol’ fashioned pub favourites plus some re-invented classics. Upstairs you’ll find their swanky restaurant, but downstairs at the burger bar is where the real magic happens. Four meaty burgers occupy the menu along with some wicked sounding sandwiches and sides that you’d probably consider just devouring as one mean main. We approached the counter and ordered their signature Merrywell Burger that came with a soft bun, beef pattie, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, tomato, special sauce, bacon and a side of fries.

“Probably one of the meatiest burgers going about town at the moment. Such an amazing thick and juicy meat pattie, which I have to say is cooked as close to perfection as you’ll find – char grilled on the outside and beautifully pink on the inside. I thinking I could happily place a cup under the burger to catch the incredible amount of juice and use it on an array of things… on cereal, in coffee, cologne… Ok, maybe just the chips! The melted cheese, smoky bacon, fresh tomatoes and sweet pickles were fantastic too. Although everything in the burger is amazing, I think I would even be happy with just the fluffy bun with that PHAT (that’s right.. P. H. fat) juicy pattie in the middle. Oh, great job on the chips too.”
“This to me, is the absolute definition of a burger: a huge chunk of beef perfectly charred on the outside and perfectly pink on the inside just oozing fat, juice and most importantly flavour. Add to that a generous amount of melted cheese and you have everything you ever need in a burger. It has all the trimmings like bacon, pickle, lettuce, tomato however they all take a back seat in the overall flavour of the burger and just add a bit of texture. This is without a doubt not the most photogenic burger on the scene, and it will leave you looking like an absolute mess, but who cares. If I were to entertain some of our American burger blogger friends in Melbourne, I would take them here and they would feel at home (burger wise). I’d just ask them to turn a blind eye to the bogan tourists at the other tables and the price tag.”
“This is a modern day burger with a good old fashioned greasy factor. The pattie was just what they claim all their burgers to be on their menu: “All burgers served pink and juicy”. The juices will pretty much use up 10 serviettes just when sinking your teeth in the first bite. Be sure to position your chips under the burger to soak up all those beautiful tasty juices. The pickle and special sauce were spot on. The burger did have cheese in it, but I don’t think it needed it; sometimes less is more and I felt that the cheese was just getting lost in the myriad of flavour. Chips were damn fine..”
“It’s been a while since I’ve eaten a burger and thanked a higher power for the greatness before me. The beef was soft but not too delicate and left a coating of glorious fat swimming around my mouth. With every passing meal I constantly ask myself whether I should head down to Merrywell for another amazing burgasm. The juicy, fatty, tasty pattie is so rockstar I don’t even think it needs any of its entourage to back it up. But they were there, and they played a wicked supporting role, allowing the beef to sing to my tastebuds whilst they threw bras and g-strings in its general direction.”
The Merrywell on Urbanspoon


This looks like the burger of my dreams!!!

Bec ( June 18, 2012 at 13:46 )

Just tried the Merrywell… its good, but the bacon was waaay overcooked to toughness and the Burger was a lacking some pink…

Still good but hurry up and try Strange Wolf already! I emailed you ages ago!

Ray ( June 19, 2012 at 13:45 )

Grant is Scottish

Steve ( June 20, 2012 at 12:19 )

Tried merrywell today, just as good as you rated it! Everyone should go now! And try this new establishment

Paul ( June 24, 2012 at 17:14 )

Got down there yesterday after relenting to the river of lustful drule that poured out of me upon reading your review. Spot on guys, this one sits right up at the top of the burger tree. What an unbelievable feed! Every element combined perfectly to make this burger one big juicy, creamy, tangy dreamboat. Couldn’t imagine finding a better example of a classic American cheeseburger and i’ll be shocked if it doesn’t feature very deep in this years top 10!

Adam ( June 25, 2012 at 12:38 )

Is this grassfed beef or grainfed/feedlot beef?

Rossco ( June 25, 2012 at 15:43 )

Visited last night and can only say I agree completely. Loved the sweet pickles – a very American touch, and right on song. Also worth noting that every table has a squeeze bottle of sauce that contained ketchup – not just bulk, cheap tomato sauce. I would have liked the bun to have a little more integrity to it as late in the consumption process it became a bit messy due to the beautiful juices from the contents. But a great burger, of that there is no doubt!

Danny Bishop ( June 26, 2012 at 09:31 )

As usual highly priced, we just got back from a trip all over the US and there is not one burger for $20. Sorry. We are ripped off here.

Adam ( June 28, 2012 at 10:22 )

Actually Adam, pretty much every burger in NYC made LaFrieda beef will run you more than $20. You can get fantastic burgers in the US for less than $20, I agree, but the best ones I’ve tried weren’t cheap, and I would have happily paid even more for most of them. I don’t think $20 for a meal as great as this one looks to be is at all expensive for their location.

Rhian ( June 28, 2012 at 16:23 )

You Clearly did not try Hamburger Mary’s in Orlando, The Shake Shack in NYC or even 5 Guys and Fries in NYC to name a few… all well and truly under $15 and the best burgers I have ever eaten.

Adam ( June 29, 2012 at 11:59 )

Go here and find a LaFrieda burger more than $20… they supply Shake Shack… scroll down… I will not buy nothing good under $20… sorry. I will not pay it.

Adam ( June 29, 2012 at 12:06 )

Actually I was staying above a shake shack and went a little nuts there, and tried 5 guys once. Loved shake shack, 5 guys were having an off day when I went, I think, but both take away joints. Merrywell is intended to be a restaurant (however trashy you might find Crown Casino to be). Surely it’s fair for a restaurant to charge more?

Rhian ( June 29, 2012 at 16:51 )

I agree, why I stay away from Restaurants. Most have no idea what real soul food is. They get lost in the money making.

Adam ( June 29, 2012 at 21:29 )

Had the Merrywell last weekend, gotta say top shelf burger took me straight back to NYC, the bun was deliciously creamy and the patty was mighty so juicey cooked med rare. Though the bacon was cooked perfect i felt the burger didnt need it. The Merrywell will find itself into this years top 3, no doubt.
Tell your friends.

Ben ( June 30, 2012 at 18:38 )

I have had a burger here & its great, very american style with bugers served med-rare. Food comes out on trays in baskets. nice views in the smoking lounge of the Yarra. Good bar service.. prices… $5- 1/2 pint $10 Pint. I recomend.

Big Mick ( June 30, 2012 at 21:45 )

Thanks for sharing your table, merrywell thoughts and also your killer blog with us tonight. Sorry for being a little sneacretive earlier….but here’s the info on the best pie. Parker Pies in Rutherglen & the Bobby Burns Beef pie is where it’s at!!! Remember to consider this pie in between two sweet buns as the ultimate pieburger??? Can’t wait to see the next installment of the burger adventures!!!!!!

Zanthea & Sharah ( July 4, 2012 at 22:05 )

Just went and had it with some mates. Well, actually I had the Merrywell and then I had the KISS. Merrywell was definitely up there, but I really did think there was just a bit too much going on. The KISS is a fantastic simple cheeseburger. I think the KISS with a bit of the special sauce would absolutely nail it. Oh, and boozy floats are dangerous.

Rhian ( July 6, 2012 at 16:31 )

I have been every week for the last 3 weeks to the Merrywell. Would have to be the best burger around at the moment.

Aaron ( October 25, 2012 at 13:32 )

On the back of glowing reviews I enjoyed a couple of delicious K.I.S.S burgers here a few months back. The meat was tender and juicy and I vowed to return.

Sadly a repeat visit last week left me cold. The patties on both of the burgers we ordered were dry and overcooked, so much so that there not a drop of juice to drip onto our fries.

I’m hoping desperately that this was just an off day, but on the basis of such a massive drop in quality you may want to check back in for a follow up review.

ruthieboots ( November 29, 2012 at 16:36 )

Their appetizers and service in general needs improvement. American gal raised on all that’s splendidly “American” (in terms of greasy food goodness); I was not impressed.

Nicole ( March 26, 2013 at 08:33 )

Shit son. You fools gotta be on crack or sumthin’.
I knew that place was whack before I even stepped in the door. Tacky decor. Staff that look and act like they moonlight at KFC. Overpriced menu.
My spidey-senses said bail. STAT.
But it’s Number 1 on the Burger Adventure. I gotta just suck it up and try it.
Burger bun that’s more scone than bun.
The kind of cheese that makes you swear off dairy.
Could the pattie redeem the failure thus far?
Only if you’re into a dry-patty with an odour that’s part cheap beef, part stale grease.
Ital bites later and I was out the door, my destination the nearest bathroom to wash that smell off my hands.
Save your dignity players. These are not the burgers you seek.

Bär ( May 15, 2013 at 21:06 )

I gotta say, I have a feeling this place has gone a bit downhill since this review. While I did enjoy my meal, It was no better than your just above average pub burger.

Even ( June 26, 2013 at 15:56 )

I’ve been there a few times and lately they seem to have gone down hill. I remember the first time I went there and the burger was soooo good! Then a few months later I tried it again and it was still good but other restaurants now have better and cheaper burgers.

I’ve also tried the upstairs burger. It was $26! :/ It was incredibly soggy and the soggyness made me feel ill. I couldn’t finish it. I hate wasting food and I felt so ripped off. I don’t think I’ll go back there ever again.

Winston ( August 19, 2013 at 18:26 )

Disappointed in the burger. Staff not helpful and many topping left off the order!

Claire Louise ( September 1, 2013 at 13:08 )

Burger was dry and burnt would not recommend it to anyone

Anonymous ( June 12, 2015 at 21:56 )

Ate one today.. rip off.. hardly any salad. Ordinary filling. ordiinary bun…left still hungry..A $29 burger you should not have to stop at maccas to fill up.. .. a huge dissapointment.

Anonymous ( March 13, 2016 at 00:34 )

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