Now, it seems that burgers have made a massive comeback in the food scene in Melbourne. While I like to follow the trends, it is always inspiring to find out where some of the magic first began all those years ago. I grabbed a bunch of mates and drove in the rain last week to one of Melbourne’s first awesome burger joints. All the true burger lovers will know this place through and through. For those that don’t, keep reading. The special place is a small shopfront in Bridport street, Albert Park called Andrew’s Hamburgers.
To the untrained eye, from the outside this may just look like your average crummy fried fish and chips store. Now I will pose this question to you; Would your average fish and chips store have customers requesting to show their smiling faces in the lens after their meal? There are a few reasons that spring to mind when I determine why Andrew’s has been so successful for so many years. Prices have kept to a minimum (around $10 a burger), the staff are extremely efficient, the shop has kept it’s older facade (which we all cherish) and the burgers are totally delicious. You sold?
The crew here have been doing their thing for a long time now, some 50 years or so I believe. You will notice as soon as you manage to push your way through the flaps hanging on the entrance that these guys have their operations down to a fine art. I was truly mesmerized as I stood at the counter watching the burger masters prepare burgers, one after another, in a highly technical assembly line manner. Truly amazing how they manage to fit up to 6 staff behind the counter, handle the crowds pouring in and out, juggle the phone orders and keep shooting out the orders. Above and beyond all the nonsense I’m talking – Andrew has kept the same winning formula and the identical recipes for all these years and the people love it!
To kick off the eating festivities we had the scotch fillet steak burger with the lot – egg, bacon, tomato, cheese and cooked onion ($11.50) in a gluten free bun ($1.50). When you’re faced with the dilemma, ‘Do I get the lot or not?’, the Chommery approved suggestion is always to stack it on – maybe best not to listen to me. Don’t expect the finest scotch fillet Melbourne has to offer but for $11.50 you have landed a great package if you order this option. Crisp bacon and melted cheese are brilliant, as expected.
Don’t give me that! You think that we are crazy because we ordered a souvlaki in a burger shop! Or is it because someone has slammed a bite out of the wrap before I took the snap. Either way, chill out on the accusations. The lamb souvlaki with grilled lettuce, continental parsley, onion, traditional garlic sauce with lemon juice and oregano ($10.50)was great! Slightly on the small side but the wrap was soft and tasted as good as they come.
You would consider my team crazy if we went passed the stock standard beef burger. This is the traditional burger with the lot – E, B and C & T ($10.50) with pineapple ($1.00). This burger gets the vote as the pick of the day. Primary features include the sizeable juice-filled patty with the melted cheese on top. I can’t express how much admiration I have for the young chap that sought to add the pineapple ring to the mix. Needless to say, it made for a much more difficult eating exercise, yet it added an amazing element of sweetness. You would be hard pressed to find a more authentic burger than this one.
Chicken breast fillet burger with tomato, lettuce and mayonnaise with the lot – Egg, bacon, caramalised onion, cheese ($11.50). All the same regularities you would find in the other burger choices, bar the addition of the caramelized onions (that all fell out the back of this monster anyway) and then swap red meat to white meat. It is important to be politically correct. You can not have any prejudice towards one color over another. Personally, I found the beef pattie to be more enjoyable than the chicken due to the increase in juice levels. Even so, the chicken is a viable option for the white power supporters.
The traditional beef burger with the lot ($10.50) + extra beef pattie ($3.00). Here we have all the same benefits of the previous beef burger but we have taken one step back removing the pineapple and three steps forward adding a pattie. A burger created for an eating challenge or any starving soul.
Now, my burger bible, ‘The Burger Adventure‘ pre-warned me the sleepiness rating was 12 minutes after consuming one of these bad boys. I have to beg to differ and state for the record, that 12 mins was very underquoted – Once I returned home I slept for two hours. Anyway, all in all, Andrew’s Hamburgers is one of Melbourne’s finer tucked away gems. If you happen to be a burger lover then add this one to your ‘burger journey’!
The Important Details…
Cuisine: Burgers -the chips are awesome too!
Noise: Clatter of assembly line preparing burger after burger
Suitable for: True lovers of classic Aussie burgers
Dress: Your Sunday finest – not really!
Price: $20 = Burger + Chips + drink
My View: Brilliant
Address: 144 Bridport Street, Albert Park
Phone: (03) 9690 2126 – call up to order