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Arbory Burger at Arbory Bar and Eatery
Photograph: Supplied

The best burgers in Melbourne

This is the definitive guide to the best things you’ll find between two buns

Written by Quincy Malesovas
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Food fads come and go, but there will always be a place in our arteries for the humble hamburger. For something budget-friendly and old-school, Southsiders swear by Andrew's in Albert Park, while Northsiders are devoted to Danny's in Fitzroy North. You could argue that Huxtaburger reinvigorated the craze when it first opened in Collingwood, but there's been a lot to love since then.

Here are Melbourne's ultimate burgers, from triple-stacked beef and cheese situations to equally decadent vegan alternatives. If they're not enough to satiate you, check out our wraps of Melbourne's best late-night eats and Korean barbecue joints.

Recommended: The 50 best restaurants in Melbourne.

Melbourne's best burgers

  • Restaurants
  • Collingwood
  • price 1 of 4

Order the: Rowdy cheeseburger
Price Range: $13.50-$39

Easey's is one of Melbourne's most notable venues. Where else can you dine from a train car perched five storeys above the ground? It goes without saying that the view rocks, but their burgers are just as big of a draw. James Hurlston (aka Jimmy's Burgers) has designed the menu, which includes a range of super-stacked American-style burgs like the Oklahoma fried onion cheeseburger and the Louisiana fried chicken sandwich. Most come with one patty but can be double or even triple-stacked if you've got a monstrous appetite. 

X-Factor: If you're looking to splash out, go for the undeniably Aussie burger called the Metropolitan Mayhem. It's packed with two potato cakes, two dim sims and all the standard burger fixings for $39 a pop. 

  • Restaurants
  • Brunswick
  • price 1 of 4

Order the: Grass-fed brisket burger
Price range: $16 (or $19 with fries)

Beatbox Kitchen's Brunswick brick and mortar may have closed in 2021, but its legacy lives on through Juanita Peaches. Though fried chicken is the focus here, its cheeseburger has developed its own loyal following. It's not as simple as the name suggests: the base is a coffee-rubbed, grass-fed brisket patty topped with confit shallots and pickles. For a bit of extra decadence, it's made with not one but two slices of cheese (one melted onto the patty and another curled up onto the top bun). 

X-Factor: Owner Raph Rashid is the brain behind some of Melbourne's best eateries, including All Day Donuts and Taco Truck. He also lays claim to kicking off the city's food truck craze, so you can bet his burgers are gonna be good. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Burgers
  • Melbourne

Order the: Cheeseburger
Price range: $9.90-$16.90

If you're after a late-night feed, look no further than Butcher's. The American-inspired diner specialises in all things meaty, from steak and eggs to pork tongue skewers to blood sausages. But the real standout is its burgers, available from noon until midnight, five days a week. Starting at $9.90, the burgers are budget-friendly but don't skimp on quality. As the name suggests, all the patties are prepared in-house by the team's dedicated butcher, and cuts rotate day to day depending on availability. 

X-Factor: In true diner fashion, Butcher's serves filter coffee all day. If you're into breakfast for dinner, we recommend pairing it with the aged cheddar and housemade bacon burger - add a fried egg. 

 

  • Restaurants
  • Burgers
  • Melbourne

Order the: Shroom burger
Price range: $11-$17, not including add-ons

Betty’s has been the quiet achiever sneaking through the back door to claim some serious burger cred over the last few years. Things are more fun than fancy with options like the surf and turf-inspired Noosa made with a beef patty and battered prawns. There are also veg options galore, including a plant-based beef patty and another made with puffed rice. But we suggest going for the Shroom burger, made with a slab of melted gouda and gruyere sandwiched between two field mushrooms before being crumbed and fried. Warning: it will induce food envy amongst your beef-eating friends. 

X-Factor: For eyes-bigger-than-your-stomach vibes, add a loaded soft serve, which they call a 'concrete', for dessert.  

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  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Northcote

Order the: Hot bird
Price range: $11.50-$17.50 (for a double)

300 Grams opened its Northcote doors to much fanfare in 2019. Since then, they've launched a second shop in Coburg to meet demand for its beloved burgers. The secret to its moreish quality is its smash patties, which get pressed onto the grill until they develop a delicious and crispy finish. The 300 Gs burger, which comes with all the classic fixings plus the shop's secret sauce, is a foolproof option. But if you can handle the heat, the super spicy Hot Bird fried chicken burger is also worth a try.

X-Factor: If you know you know that beef burgers aren't 300 Grams' only claim to fame. The team make a delightfully nostalgic fish fillet burger (inspired by a certain fast-food chain), and they even have an Essendon store called Scaleable devoted entirely to seafood. 

  • Restaurants
  • Albert Park

Order the: Hawaiian Five-O
Price range: $9 (for a kid's burger) to $18.50

Long before we jumped on the burger trend train, we had the humble corner shop grilling the good old Aussie burger with ubiquitous add-ons of egg, beetroot and pineapple, not giving a stuff what the rest of the world thought of us. This home-grown burger style has become a niche and is all the more reason to seek out the guilty pleasure of a crusty white roll encasing a super-caramelised patty topped with canned pineapple and beetroot, tomato, shredded iceberg lettuce, chopped white onion and bottled tomato sauce.  Set aside your pretension and support the guys who have been doing it since 1939.

X-Factor: Nostalgia, nostalgia, nostalgia!

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  • Restaurants
  • Fitzroy North

Order the: Hamburger with the lot
Price range: $6.50-$15.50 (for a triple)

Danny's is another old faithful amongst Melbourne's saturated burger scene. The Fitzroy North institution opened in 1945 and has managed to keep its prices incredibly low since then. a standard beef burger with lettuce and diced onion starts at $7.50, and a vegetarian burger (which swaps the burger patty for egg, cheese and an assortment of veg) is just $6.50. When the whole meal costs under a tenner, it's silly not to tack on a few extras, which range from bacon to beetroot to jalapeños. 

X-Factor: If one burger isn't enough to fill you up, go for a heaping side of hot chips. Even the small size is surprisingly large and always seasoned to perfection.

Royal Stacks
  • Restaurants
  • Melbourne

Order: The King
Price range: $8.50 (for a kid's burger) to $18.40

If you’ve ever been to the US, you would have heard of a little burger chain called Shake Shack. Dani Zeini has taken some inspiration from Danny Meyer and isn’t afraid to admit Melbourne’s burger culture has something to borrow from its American friends. He ensures quality control at Royal Stacks with his 100% Australian grass-fed, GMO, hormone and antibiotic-free beef and proudly uses local products across the board. If you must choose just one burger, go for the King. It proves bigger is better with an incredibly cheesy mac and cheese croquette stacked onto a charred single patty with American mustard, secret sauce, butter lettuce and tomato. You may wish you had a bigger mouth. 

X-Factor: Double down on the fried stuff with some potato gems and get a milkshake made with Royal Stack's creamy frozen custard, which they churn in-house. 

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  • Bars
  • Melbourne

Order the: Cheeseburger
Price range: $22-$25, including fries

Arbory’s arrival as an all-day diner and drinks destination running along Flinders St Station has always been an ambitious one, but it's obviously doing something right if it's packed from dawn to dusk.  Besides the drinks, the burgers are one of the biggest features here, acting as a solid building block to a good night out. Our money’s on the cheeseburger, which comes as a double with bacon, pickles and tomato relish plus a side of crinkle cut chips. They may come straight out of the freezer bag and into the fryer, but we all know they are the best and come with the price of the burger, so who are we to complain?

X-Factor: Take advantage of the well-considered drinks list, which includes an impressive selection of local wine, or head next door to Arbory Afloat for a Spritz. 

  • Restaurants
  • Melbourne

Order the: Mr Hot
Price range: $10 (for a kid's burger) to $17 (for a double)

Mr Burger began as a roving food truck but now boasts several stores and permanent trucks across Melbourne and Hobart. If you haven't managed to spot the bright orange burger mobile on the streets, you can catch it at Welcome to Thornbury or Welcome to Brunswick where it makes an appearance every Wednesday through Sunday. The menu is full of winners, but for those who like spice, try the Mr Hot. It pairs the eatery's classic beef patty, cheese and bacon with jalapeños, chilli mayo and a handful of fried onion rings for good measure, all stacked onto a sesame bun. 

X-Factor: For something hearty, go for the Mr Double. It packs double the beef, cheese and bacon into one bun. It's also got a healthy dose of Trucker Sauce, Mr Burger's top-secret condiment made with McClure's pickles from Detroit.

Still hungry?

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