The B.east

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The B.east – 80 Lygon Street, Brunswick East, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Sexy B.east
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
23 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$15
Summary

Make your way down Lygon St, way past anyone trying to throw spaghetti down your throat (no guarantees though, there are plenty of kooks around this neck of the woods), and you’ll find yourself in an eclectic pocket of Brunswick East. Now, you’d never really consider that end of town to be a culinary paradise, but with all the new-age retro-chic kids running free around these parts, there are more and more worthwhile eateries popping up. B.east is the latest venue to open its doors to “said kids” with open arms, offering a multitude of burgers, beers and bands to leave the locals more than satisfied. Run by the same guys who brought you the Section 8 Container Bar, B.east is aiming to stand out by excelling in the art of burgers. What they want to do says venue manager Guy Daley, is “to make simple, awesome burgers in-house…” and “to do one thing but do it really well”. Thats why you’ll notice that the most part of the menu is taken up by their in-house made burgers (even though the pork shoulder sandwich sounds unbelievable). Whether you order a burger or an icecream sundae, you’ll most likely be hiding from Melbourne’s bitch-ass weather and sitting in a low-lit open space, with street art adorning the walls and plenty of chilli sauces only an arms length away to fry your face off. In keeping with the Burger Adventure spirit we strolled up to the bar and ordered a Sexy B.east Burger that came on brioche bun with 2 beef patties (brisket, rump & chuck mix made on site), oozing double cheese, onion, lettuce, tomato and a jalapeno spiced mayonnaise. We coupled this with a serve of B.east Triple Cooked Chips with chilli sauce and cheese for and added $9.

Comments
“This burger came out looking all neat and pretty, however, the fun really started when I attempted my first bite and it all turned into a giant, juicy and delicious mess. The beef wasn’t seasoned too much but it still had a lot of those beefy flavours working for it. Due to the coarseness of the mince, it all sort of crumbled into bite size chunks adding to the mess. I couldn’t really taste any overpowering spice in the jalapeno mayo, possibly because there was so much cheese to drown it out. There must of been some secret laneway/warehouse/fixie/instagram/sitting in a park/drinking cider party happening that the locals were at that night, because this place was pretty much empty.”
“A great double pattie burger experience! The name “Sexy B.east” really suits this burger down to a T. The burger contained high-quality meat – cooked perfectly and full of awesome beefy juices. I was happy to see that they didn’t hold back on the cheese, because to say there was a generous amount is an understatement. With all the hot sauces around I figured this burger might give a bit of a kick, but the jalapeno mayo is pretty mild, fit enough for the biggest of spice wimps. We combined the burger with chilli chips swimming in cheese – ohhh yeah that was a good choice.”
“There’s been a bit of chit-chat around town lately about a sudden epidemic of burger joints opening up left right and centre. Its pretty easy to say its all a trend and its just the cool thing to do… But if it IS just the cool thing to do, then B.east might as well have the Fonz as their Head Chef. These guys delivered such an unexpectedly awesome burger, it left me a little embarrassed for doubting these rookies in the first place. It’s not often that you can get a regular burger right, let alone a double pattie burger. Usually most of them are overkill on flavour or size, but this was on the money. The patties were left simple and beefy and let the rest of the ingredients bring the salt, creaminess and spice to the table. Ready for some controversy? If you asked me now where I’d go for a burger and beer on that side of town, you’d see me driving right past Hux and straight into the jaws of the B.east. ”
The B.East on Urbanspoon


Jazz City Diner

Tuesday, May 8, 2012
Jazz City Diner – 238 Crown St, Surry Hills,
New South Wales, Australia
Burger:
Cheeseburger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
13 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$15
Summary

Jazz City Diner is conveniently located on a hill (so you can walk off everything you consume) and is the perfect getaway from the nearby madness that is Oxford St. The small 24 seat diner draws inspiration from the typical 1930’s American diner, with everything from neon signage, art deco influences and some all-star, friendly service. Chef/Owner Dan McGuirt has put together a menu that is destined for success; inciting your tastebuds to riot with the very mention of dishes like Chicken & Waffles, Kansas City Style BBQ Pork Ribs, Banana Cream Pie with Caramel Drizzle and of course, there are the 9 burger options to choose from. We felt it was most appropriate to keep it nice and simple, ordering the Cheeseburger that comes with a traditional sesame seed burger bun, a square beef pattie, onion, tomato, mayo, pickle relish and lettuce. This accompanied by a stack of sweet potato Fries (inc. in the cost) and a peanut butter milkshake, and you’re in business.

Comments
“A very humble cheeseburger with old fashioned roots. We got a chance to ask Dan why the burgers had square patties and he told us he grew up eating Wendy’s and White Castle burgers and he wanted to bring that nostalgia from back home to Sydney for all of his customers to experience. Mission achieved Dan – and, with a far better quality than you would ever get from Wendy’s or White Castle. Sitting under Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis and other Jazz posters that hang on the walls, you can’t help but feel at one with that certain romance the diner delivers through its service and meals. The pattie was a nice, flat, square ol’ style pattie with all the flavour you would expect from a diner burger (in other words no fancy-shmancy exotic spices or herbs). The mayo, red onion, pickle and cheese were all good. The sweet potato fries – although not my thing – were good and I do recommend them.”
“I’m sceptical of almost everything “Aussie-Americana” these days, so Jazz City Diner was no different. This was probably due to all the average meals we’ve had at a few other so-called American Diners claiming to be the bees knees. But, I’d heard decent stuff so I really had to make up my own mind. Hearing a friendly American accent from the kitchen was a pretty good sign of authenticity. But then, I bit in to my Cheeseburger and duuuuude this was the real deal. The flavours were so humble and subtle. Dan’s square signature pattie had just the right amount of fat in it leaving an awesome amount of greasiness to echo around my mouth with every bite. This was a real heartwarming experience with nice personal touches here and there, like the simple addition of pepper on the tomatoes – gorgeous. Well done Dan and crew, Jazz City Diner has it going on.”
Jazz City Diner on Urbanspoon


Bess

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Bess – 105 Swan Street, Richmond, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Bess Burger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$22
Summary

Stepping through Bess’ front doors is like being teleported straight into the heart of Paris. With a classic black and white chequerboard floor, cane seats and, mood lighting that’d make Julia Gillard look like Miranda Kerr, it’ll take a friendly “Hello” to bring you back to Melbourne. Owners Katie Krauss-Mitchell and Brendon Mitchell (formerly of Prahran Gastropub Hotel Max), have breathed new life into this Victorian without killing any of its century old romance. Their French/Belgian/European inspired menu draws from the pages of their own experience living and traveling abroad, offering dishes such as duck breast, spaghetti marinara, suckling pig and jamon croquettes. We of course ordered the Bess burger that came included a brioche bun, a 100% Cape Grim beef pattie, cheese, gherkin, iceberg lettuce, bacon & a side of fries.

Comments
“I like this place, I like this burger – I honestly can’t fault it one bit. The burger came out perfectly presented with the fries served in an unpretentious brown paper bag. There was a nice chunky piece of beef, cooked perfectly containing a tonne of juice and flavour. It had a really sharp slice of cheese over the top (which overpowered the ham but who cares), and a nice slice of pickle underneath it resulting in plenty of taste until the last bite. Bess is a really nice restaurant with really nice, well informed wait staff and, has a delightful ambience. This is why I was surprised at how quiet it was – but it is footy season and I guess there was a game on down the road at the MCG. If I ever asked out a girl from north of the river (and she agreed to be seen in public with me), I would definitely take her here.”
“The Cape Grim beef pattie stole the show in my book. It was beautifully cooked, with a very delicate texture and a nice hint of smokiness. The menu states the burger comes with bacon, but for some reason we received our burgers with thin ham slices. The ham was OK, but I really would like to have experienced the saltiness of the bacon in the burger. I think it would have worked, but to be honest I really didn’t miss it. The gherkins delivered that fresh crunchiness to the burger that I so love. And, I don’t often say this, but I really liked the prep the kitchen did with the Iceberg Lettuce – taking something that is bland and cutting it delicately and mixing it in with the mayo, proving that Iceberg lettuce can be good in a burger (especially when fresh). Fries were good, loved the extra touch they add in serving it in a branded paper bag.”
“This burger came out looking sexy. So sexy in fact that I had it unhooked, unzipped and with its skirt on the floor. By “skirt” I mean the cute paper bag that the chips came housed in. Nice effect, but those babies needed to be free to absorb all of my (burger’s) juices. Now when I say that this thick Tasmanian pattie was cooked to perfection, I really want to stress that word: perfection. Two of my favourite things in the world are pink: one is the centre of a gloriously cooked pattie, the other is my favourite kind of midnight snack. The bun was sweet, tended to tear apart a bit, but still did a good job of keeping everything together. Something else that made me smile was the integration of the shredded lettuce and shredded gherkin. You didn’t know where one began and the other ended, forming like Voltron to become one ingredient. My only “wtf” was the use of a basic ham instead of the anticipated bacon. Did they run out of bacon? Do they not serve bacon on Sundays? Who knows? All I know is that if the Bess Burger was this enjoyable without it, then with it… Wow!”
Bess Richmond on Urbanspoon


Hook, Line & Sinker

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Hook, Line & Sinker – 91 Kingsway, Glen Waverley,
Victoria, Australia
Burger:
The Lot
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
8 minutes
Would we recommend:
Don’t expect much
Price:
$8.90
Summary

In 1972 a Greek immigrant known as Uncle Steve, arrived in Melbourne. Several years later, with his wife Poly at his side, he opened up his first fish’n’chip shop on Fitzroy St, St Kilda. Fast forward a few decades and Uncle Steve and his disciples have landed in the buzzing multi-cultural strip that has slowly evolved in Glen Waverley. Hook, Line & Sinker, we assume is in stark contrast to the original shop, with a modern take on the take away experience featuring exposed brick, plasma TVs, communal and al-fresco tables, beer on tap and healthier options on offer, as well as your stand fish’n’chip shop grub. We opted for the burger with the lot featuring beef, lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese, bacon & egg.

Comments
“On paper I should not have liked this burger. It had a flour covered bun and the thin beef patty was burnt to a crisp however, I kind of enjoyed it. Although it was a thin piece of beef that had spent too long on the plate, it had a really nice charred flavour to it and didn’t go too rubbery. The other ingredients were exactly stock standard what you would expect but, for what you pay, its not bad value. An interesting layout and venue, and hey, I think a bar in every fish’n’chip shop is the way to go.”
“This place was a bit confusing. It felt and looked like a Fish’n’Chip shop, but had a pub-like menu to it. Throw in the fact that they had Carlton Draught on tap and I was going to give this place a fantastic rating, purely that it was something different. As always whenever I get too ahead of my self, Jah throws you a life lesson. In this instance it was the burger. The pattie didn’t have much seasoning, the bacon was OK, I couldn’t taste the onion in it and the whole thing needed sauce. When you narrow down it basically comes down to two factors that really make a burger: a burger will usually either be sweet or salty, sometimes it can be both. Unfortunately this burger played Switzerland and just annoyed the shit out of me. It was a shame because I really wanted to like it. The chips were average.”
“It was one of those nights where you step outside and swear; damn it was cold. So to my delight, with an excellent spot under the split-system blowing warm air, the footy playing right in front of us and a burger on its way, it was almost a perfect start to the night. The burger was placed before us and yes, I was a little excited – I mean it looked the business. But biting in left me unsatisfied, like some sort of wooden legged street worker named Darlene who’s just doing it to pay for acting lessons. The cheese wasn’t melted, the pattie was just a bit of salt and charr and the onions weren’t juicy like I had hoped they’d be. Yes, there was the odd bite or two I where experienced squirts of flavour and joy, but overall it didn’t take me anywhere near climax.”
Hook Line and Sinker Fish and Chips on Urbanspoon


Burger Boss

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Burger Boss – 334A Highett Road, Highett, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Big Boss
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
7 minutes
Would we recommend:
Don’t expect much
Price:
$8.80
Summary

Located on a suburban street that looks like it’s stuck in the 70’s, Burger Boss is one of the few modern shops that is injecting some new life into the area. Having only recently opened their doors, Burger Boss is a place where for $4.40 (YES only $4.40!), you can get a Cheese Burger with all the necessary trimmings. They also pump out 6 types of burgers along with a BLT and a Sloppy Joe. With limited seating for eating-in, this place is more of a “call-in and pick up your order” joint. But, for those slightly less motivated individuals who really don’t want to battle the elements for picking up dinner, you’ll be glad to hear that Burger Boss also does home deliveries. The staff are laid back, friendly and every burger is made to order, allowing your mind to wonder and dream of beef, bacon and burger goodness whilst you wait. We went for the Big Boss that came on a simple hamburger bun with one 100% beef pattie, bacon, egg, cheddar cheese, grilled onions, lettuce, fresh tomato, pickles, American mustard and tomato sauce.

Comments
“I love egg on a burger, I love mustard on a burger and, I’ve grown to love pickle on my burger. However, I dont think I’ve had all 3 on a burger before, and the reason why is: it doesn’t work. The egg adds a really creamy and soft texture which, is in stark contrast to the sharp bite of the pickle and mustard that all combined make for a strange taste. The beef was chopped, packed really fine and was cooked a little too long making it quite tough and chewy. On a really positive note, they served up possibly the best onion rings I’ve ever had and I would possibly consider coming back just for them.”
“This burger could of been a contender, I mean it! When the thing you specialise in is primarily burgers, you should have that knock-out factor. The burger had everything I love in burgers – pickles, mustard, bacon, onion and, oddly enough it was a forgettable burger. The pattie was OK, with an alright amount of seasoning, but probably lacked some vital fat flavours to really give it any edge. The bun was the most disappointing part to it; it tasted and felt ordinary (like a supermarket bun) leaving me shattered. This burger really has potential, and I only suspect maybe because it’s still early days the lovely gents at Burger Boss will nail this burger in the time to come. The fries were good and with the extra Boss Sauce for dipping, got even better.”
“In a nutshell, the burger reeked of blandness. It brought many promises to the table but really didn’t deliver any of them. It’s sad for me to say, but the most dominant taste was carbon. The bacon was slightly over done and the bun was left on the grill for too long. They have this stuff called Boss Sauce (I paid extra for it to dip into my chips), and in my opinion it should come standard in their signature, “Boss Burger”. It would at least give them a point of difference and create an iconic flavour for their shop (refer to Grill’d Herb Mayonnaise and all the maniacs in love with it if you doubt me). I did thieve an onion ring or two from D and yes, they were damn good. Because they’ve only recently opened we should cut them some slack, but at least from now the only way is up baby.”
Burger Boss on Urbanspoon


Souper Burger

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Souper Burger – 198 Barkly St, St Kilda, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Perry
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$9.50
Summary

If you’ve never seen it before you’d be forgiven. When its not being hidden by the buses that stop right out the front, you might not think much of it if you walked past. From both the exterior and interior it looks as if it has been apart of the scenery for yonks. Truth be told, they’ve only been open for around 5 months and their game, as the name suggests, is soup and burgers. Some years ago, owner and chef Scott had a ripper of a soup recipe going. Thinking, “Why the hell not share it with the world”, he decided to open his first establishment. But, Melbourne being Melbourne, where your day can turn from Merino wool to Budgy Smugglers, he knew a soup kitchen alone wasn’t going to be enough. Harking back to his childhood from a family vacation to Queensland, Scott told us all about one particular burger experience that left him gobsmacked and in love. This passion for burgers sees him at Prahran Market every morning scouting for the freshest, juiciest produce. After many trials it was Gary’s Quality Meats that made the cut. With a bunch of different burgers on the menu (all named after people that helped Scott get Souper Burger up and running) he also offers up a selection of winter warming soups and chilli dogs. Using a mix of Chuck, Short Rib and Brisket, some simple seasoning and a homemade burger press Scott dished us out the Perry (named after the Welder that put the joint together). Along with the beef pattie the burger comes on a toasted buttered bun, with lettuce, caramelised onion, tomato, free range bacon, egg, cheddar cheese plus a choice of sauce (we opted for ketchup and mayo).

Comments
“As the time passed and we waited for a our meals, I had a feeling this one man show would produce the goods and it’d be worth the wait! With the looks of a good old fish’n’chip shop burger, the beef pattie was subtly seasoned and had been cooked nicely. The combo of the egg and the creamy cheese makes for a burger that was really one of the creamiest I can remember having. The caramelised onions were also perfectly cooked and added a nice sweetness. I really have to say this place is going to give a few other joints of similar style a run for their money.”
“Seeing as it was a slow monday night with only other 2 people in the shop who bought soup, I was wondering why it was taking so long. However, then I took my first bite and understood the time and care this guy puts into making his burgers. The beef was slightly thicker than your average fish’n’chip shop pattie, but it was the extras that really stole the show. The creamy melted cheese, the yolky egg, caramelised onions and a bun soaked in butter is what, for me, set this burger above other similar take away burgers. I have a lot of respect for one man shows who are passionate about their food, I just feel sorry for him when he gets busy.”
“For a place that’s only 5 months old this place looks like it has always been part of the neighbourhood. With a St. Kilda like casualness to it and friendly hospitality this place impressed the hell out of me. The nicely seasoned beef pattie was cooked perfectly. The cheddar cheese slice combined with the mayo made each bite a delight. What topped it for me was the caramelised onion – just oozing with sweetness taking the burger up a level. The bun was nicely toasted with no surprises there. The lettuce and tomato were there and did their job, not taking over the burger. Sorry folks, no chips here, but you don’t really need any. If you feel like you need a side I recommend the Chilli Dog for $5.”
“I walked into this not expecting a whole lot. I know, I’m an asshole. But the concept of soup and burgers together took me to a weird place. But once I bit in to the burger, that weird place turned into paradise. It was so creamy! A whole bunch of sweetness ooozed from the caramelised onions, the bacon was delicious, the cheese and egg fantastic, and the small amount of lettuce and tomato stepped back but did their job. Being lightly seasoned, the meat really didn’t have to stand out a whole lot in regards to creating any overpowering flavours. Instead it worked in harmony with its other counterparts to make me smile with every bite. Being one of the most well-balanced, and enjoyable adventures I’ve had in a while, it really shows that the most important ingredient in a burger is love. ***wipes tear***”
Souper Burger on Urbanspoon


Wayside Inn

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Wayside Inn – 446 City Rd, South Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Cheese Burger
Serviettes:
4
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
14 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$18
Summary

If you ever find yourself meandering around the industrial back streets of Port/South Melbourne thinking to yourself “I would love a casual, yet refined dining experience with the option of a bar menu, restaurant and sunny courtyard”… then the Wayside Inn is for you. From the creators of The Station Hotel in Footscray, owner Sean Donovan and Head Chef Matt Merrick offer a new pub dining experience based on the simple concept of well-prepared food using quality ingredients, one of the highlights being the different daily offering of rotisserie available like Venison with figs, Boer Goat and Duck. To wash down your meal there are over 20 beers to choose from and a carefully selected wine list to best match your chosen dish. However, we decided to go for the Cheese burger (available on the all day bar menu). It comes with a thick beef pattie, cheddar cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato, beetroot relish, all on a brioche bun. On the side you get big hand cut chips that are triple cooked: first boiled, slowly fried and then finally deep fried.

Comments
“I have to say I was really left in two minds about this burger! With the old saying in mind that you “eat with your eyes”, this burger would be at the top of that list. An amazingly thick and juice pattie that was cooked to perfection. Some really great smokey bacon added to this meaty affair. I have to say I do enjoy a good beetroot relish, especially on such a meaty burger – it added the perfect amount of sweetness. Now the few things that kind of let me down! The great bun was definitely cut unevenly; with the base being too thin and I found the cheese a bit too sharp and overpowering. Now for the chips. THEY ARE NOT CHIPS!! It was seriously like eating half a potato with every bite!”
“A very visablly appealing burger; stacked high with a big chunk of beef in full view with cheese running down the sides. The large piece of beef had been minced perfectly leaving plenty of fat and juice in the pattie. The cheese was very strong on its own however, with so much beef it added just the right amount of kick – any other cheese would have been lost. Although not usually a fan of beetroot, the relish under the beef added just enough sweetness necessary. The bacon was cut very thick and tasted great. All-in-all a really good and well thought out burger. In terms of thick cut chips, they’re probably the best I’ve had, but they still don’t compare to a good French Fry.”
“A great juicy, thick (and I mean thick) pattie. The bun was good, but if cut a little bit more evenly in the middle it would have had a better bread distribution and wouldn’t leave the bottom bun a thin, soggy mess. The bacon was nicely smoked and full of that sweet hickory taste, combined with a really sharp cheese to round out each bite full of goodness. I thought I could taste mustard so that warmed my heart and then the relish added another sweet angle to the burger. Chips were a bit too thick for my liking, but cooked well none the less. This burger will definitely be seeing me again.”
“The waterfall of cheese gushing down the side of my pattie struck my taste buds like cupids arrow – it was instant love. The sharp aged cheddar did however, turn out to be a team player. Alone it was strong and let you know who’s boss, but when mixed together with the awesome beef pattie and delicious smokey bacon, it was supportive and nurturing like a MILF. Next time, honestly this is the way I would tackle it though: just beef, bacon and cheese. For such an enjoyable burger its a shame the chips weren’t the moreish salty side snack that I’d hoped for. But thats not enough to stop me from heading back for a lunchtime burger and brew. Big up Sean D and the team for polishing the hell out of this hidden gem.”
Wayside Inn on Urbanspoon


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