Now, when you manage to get a table or spot at the bar at Barney Allen’s in St Kilda you are presented with a menu. I have been here a handful of times and still do not quite understand why there is a whole page of options. We can joke, kid and have an solid merry old play, but let’s cut the shit. Seriously. You came to Barney Allen’s for one purpose. To get the burger.
Part owner of this popular location is Melbourne’s own celebrity chef Iain Hewitson, or more commonly known as Huey. He has managed to develop an open bar environment that is not at all pretentious and is inviting for people of all ages. Inside, there is a basic fit out comprising a bar with stools, a few tables and laid back couches at the rear. Take it from me, there is no need to dress up, worry about bookings or any other fancy business before coming here. Just a great casual place to head, open seven nights til late.
The above snap is of the outdoor seating area which runs along the famous Fitzroy Street in St Kilda. On a warmer evening, you would be hard pressed to find a more enjoyable experience if you are looking for a relaxed snack and a couple of frothies. When it’s cooler like right now, the heaters are on but you can retreat to the larger indoor section, still ensuring the beers and burgers are intact and flowing. Not as much fresh air, but still a damn good experience.
We decided to really indulge on this particular visit to Allen’s eatery. By this I mean we ordered a couple of entrees to share as well as the burgers. Obviously. The parmesan crumbed polenta chips with sweet chilli mayo ($11.00) were delicious if you feel like sharing a plate to whet the palette. These were crunchy on the outside, delightfully soft on the inside and very hot (in temperature). Help these fat fingers of goodness cool down by painting them in a coat of the mayonnaise sauce. You will not regret ordering these.
The shuijao – pork and ginger dumplings with soy and mirin dipping sauce ($12.50). A plate of dumplings that were not tasty enough to be re-ordered and certainly not worth the price tag. I probably wouldn’t recommend ordering the dumplings, rather stick to what Barney is known for.
Plate one displays the Barney Allen’s famous burger ($12.50) in all its glory, sitting oh so pretty with an essential side of chips ($2.50 extra). The burger in all its epicness comprises a soft white burger bun, monster sized lamb patty, crispy bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion, a tomato relish and a sweet beetroot relish (on polar ends). Absolutely awesome! There is definitely a reason why you look at every other customer inside the restaurant and there is a burger in front of them. I must warn you that eating this in a regular burger chomming style is a big challenge. You can expect a lot of dripping, sauces and juices dripping everywhere and some of the insides to fall out. No problem, just thought I should give you the heads up – maybe not the best place for a first date chom. The chips cooked in a McDonald’s – esque style, long, crispy and salty are an awesome side.
I was debating whether to include this picture or not. In the end I decided that it was of the utmost importance to visually show the size of the patty that is used. Further, to inspect the inside of this delightful burger without its roof. Kind of like looking at the birds eye architectural drawings of a property. You have to see the plans before you go through with the purchase!
And now a profile shot to show the true height of the burger. The burger has been strategically positioned on a plate standing alone without the chips on this photo to show its tall dominance and ability to get the job done without any sides. The Chommery approved suggestion is to order a pint of Heineken as shown in the background. I don’t have a degree in pairing food and drink. My humble opinion is that beer and burger makes for smiling people.
For me the Barney Allen’s burger is one of the best that I have been faced with in Melbourne. If you need that little extra support, the wildy popular blog ‘The Burger Adventure’, voted this as the 6th best burger in Melbourne in 2011. Included in the popular list (which I would recommend inspecting) features the likes of, Beatbox Kitchen, Rockpool (twice) and Danny’s Burgers.
There you have it, I could keep on talking but I feel that I have done my dash here. If burgers and alcohol are your thing, head on down to Barney Allen’s in St Kilda.
The Important Details…
Bookings: Unfortunately no – food served quickly though
Suitable for: All
Dress: Relaxed – Can’t eat burgers any other way
Price: $20 – $25 a head
My View: Top burger + alcohol = bliss
Address: 14 Fitzroy Street, St Kilda
Phone: (03) 9525 5477