For a thick and juicy cut of chicken breast coated in a golden crumb, look no further than the Birmy in Fitzroy. The saucy bird's coated in fresh napoli sauce, topped with thick slices of smokey ham and finished off with a generous lathering of melted cheese. It's so succulent that its juices permeate the bottom crumb causing it to go soggy, but you won't have that issue because it will be gone in 60 seconds. It's that good.
We set out to discover the many variations of Melbourne's most iconic dish and pub staple; the chicken parma.
To judge parma perfection, we arrived at a set of criteria that each winning parma would have to meet. We asked ourselves: is the chook fresh, flavoursome, moist and tender? Is the crumb well-seasoned and crisp throughout? Is the cheese rich and bubbly golden brown? Is the ham thick and rich, lending depth and umami to an otherwise simple dish? Is the sauce made from scratch, with the freshest of ingredients? And of course, are the parma's natural allies – the chips, the salad and the beer – all up to scratch?
After much deliberation, here, in no particular order, are six of the city's best and the personalities they represent.