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at Wonderpop and Deli
Photograph: Graham Denholm

The best pies in Melbourne

We scoured all of Melbourne for the best meals found in pastry

Written by
Kelly Eng
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Who ate all the pies? We did, in a fearless and fattening quest to find Melbourne’s least humble pies. Whether classic crusts are a must or you crave innovative takes on traditional treats, this list of Melbourne’s finest will have you champing at the bit.

Melbourne's not just limited to pies for the best cheap eats, we have burgers and toasties as well. Why not finish off with a doughnut for dessert?

Melbourne's best pies

  • Restaurants
  • St Kilda

Order this: Beef ragu pie

There’s only one pie available at Baker D Chirico, and for good reason – they’ve nailed it. Tender chunks of slow-cooked beef with celery, mushroom and carrot are packed into a seriously buttery shortcrust pastry. Add a slick of mildly spiced house-made kasoundi and you have your ticket to pie paradise. This noble nibble is sturdy enough to eat with your hands, but it’s well worth sitting down to savour. There are few chairs at their petite St Kilda store, so, it might be best to whisk your prey (plus pastries, sourdough bread and, heck, why not some custard doughnuts?) home to devour.

  • Restaurants
  • Footscray

Order this: Lasagne pie

Melburnians have their knickers in a knot over this newbie. Ex-Supernormal chef Scott Blomfield is baking up some beauties in this tiny establishment, which is set among Barkly Street’s Vietnamese shops. It’s hard to go past the lasagne pie, which marries two of our favourite dishes to produce the ultimate comfort food. Think layers of silky lasagne sheets, beef and pork bolognese sauce and creamy béchamel, all baked into a crisp shell with a bubbly, blistered cheese top. Pies also come in miniature form for those who can’t decide on one. The Thai red curry pie, fragrant with lemongrass, chilli and coriander, should definitely be on your hit list.

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  • Restaurants
  • Cafés
  • Melbourne

Order this: Bang Bang Chicken Wow Wow

Raymond Capaldi’s narrow deli at the top end of Little Lonsdale Street satiates office workers and tradies alike with its uniquely named – and filled – pies. There’s the Tradie Slammer (pie shoved into a brioche bun), a classic meat pie named That Old Devil Called Tradish and the, er, Phuc Face (confit duck). It’s worth weathering the mild embarrassment of asking for the Bang Bang Chicken Wow Wow (Thai green chicken pie), filled with tender chicken pieces, a creamy and full-flavoured coconut sauce and loads of oomph from chilli, lemongrass and coriander. A robust shortcrust pastry forms the base, while a shiny puff pastry seals the deal. Eat in and have your pie served with peas and mash (or feel virtuous and have salad), or take away for a decadent desk lunch.

  • Restaurants
  • Patisseries
  • Brunswick East
  • price 1 of 4

Order this: The Allen

You’d expect British chef Matt Wilkinson to be able to knock out a quality pie, and this he does with aplomb at his small and unassuming Brunswick East shop. We rate the Allen, in which slow-cooked Warialda beef, sweet celery, carrots and onion are packaged in a rustic-looking shortcrust pastry. Look out for the sweet pies, too, like buttermilk and honey, or strawberry and balsamic.  

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  • Bars
  • Fitzroy

Order this: Fish pie

We had to include a posh pie in the line-up, and the Builders Arms fish pie is an upper-crust cracker. While it’s perfect for a chilly winter’s night, it’s also worth eating on a sweaty January day in the sleek dining room. Plump seafood pieces (depending on the season they could be rockling, ocean trout or prawn) are enveloped in a creamy lemon, dill and sorrel sauce. It’s all baked into a ramekin and crowned with a dreamy flaky puff pastry lid (make sure you save some lid for sauce mopping). This aristocratic pie has been on the menu since 2012, and we suspect Fitzroy would revolt if it were removed.

  • Restaurants
  • Port Melbourne

Order this: Beef, Guinness and cheddar pie

Pure Pie began in Holly and Michael Carthew’s St Kilda apartment, where they cranked out pies to sell at farmers’ markets. Fast forward eight years and they have shops in Port Melbourne and the Docklands, as well as a loyal following. The cosy Port Melbourne store has oven-kissed pies sitting in the warmer and a fridge full of takeaway options, with family-sized pies too. Their beef, Guinness and cheddar pie is a winner. The pastry, made with butter and sour cream, is notably flaky, and there’s plenty of chunky – but not too chunky – slow-cooked beef with sweet diced carrots. The melted cheddar on the pastry lid is what elevates it from great to must-have. Sweet treats, including carrot cake, lemon slice and monte carlos are also in abundance. Best wear your loosest pants. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Fitzroy

Order this: Mushroom, haloumi and spinach pie

There are plenty of organic goodies to tempt you at this bakery – giant pizza wheels, quiches, loaves of bread, caramel slices, brownies and biscuits. Around mid-morning, the pies emerge from the oven. There’s beef, chicken, mushroom and lentil, and there are gluten-free versions too, so those who can’t tolerate that pesky protein can join the party. The mushroom pie is rich enough to satisfy even the staunchest meat eater. Popping with button mushrooms, haloumi and a generous tangle of spinach, it’s all encased in a golden brown shortcrust pastry and topped with sunflower seeds. The pastry lid is crimped at the edges for an extra satisfying crunch.

  • Restaurants
  • Spotswood

Order this: Classic beef

An Australian bakery with an American twist, Candied Bakery has been fuelling the west with house-made pies, bread, cakes and soft serve since 2013. The classic beef pie, a tribute to the Four’N Twenty, is one for the most devout of carnivores. Rich and deeply savoury, it’s packed full of organic minced beef from Cherry Tree organics, with not a vegetable in sight, and topped with layers of super-flaky pastry. The unconventional use of Vegemite adds undeniable depth to its flavour. And if you’re thirsty, there’s an apple pie milkshake too – yup, that’s an apple pie blended straight into your milk.

Want more meat?

  • Restaurants
  • Steak house

If you’re in need of a red meat fix, here’s our list of ten of the best places in Melbourne to get yours. These are by no means the only places in town throwing a rump on the grill, but they’re our go-to for every budget and occasion. 

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