You just can't beat meat. Slow-cooked, smoked, barbequed, and pulled, sandwiched in a bun or served on the bone, meat is well and truly our favourite thing, well, ever. So, for all you readers that share our carnivorous love, we've compiled a list of must-go places for the meaty feasts—covering the best ribs, brisket, steaks, burgers, and snags in town. Vegetarians, beware.
Here are our picks for the best restaurants in Melbourne to get your meat fix.
Steak Ministry Bar & Grill | Glen Waverley
Glen Waverley's Steak Ministry Bar & Grill is a meat-eater's paradise, serving up some of the best steak (and ribs!) in Melbourne. Hatted Executive Chef, Chris Wade uses the finest beef from a small selection of Australia's top producers, the menu focusing on hard-to-find cuts of Wagyu and Kobe (yummm!). Serious about steak? Order the mammoth Tomahawk Rib Eye (1.5 to 2 kilos of Sher Wagyu with a marble score of 8+) or try Steak Ministry's 'Super Steak' offering, a hand-selected piece of the finest export quality meat cooked to melt-in-your-mouth perfection by Wade. Believe me, you've never had steak until you've taken on one of these bad boys. Steak Ministry also serve up some of the best ribs in town, with finger-lickin' flavours like Tennessee Whisky, Jamaican Jerk Spice, Mississippi BBQ, and Sticky Korean. Drool.
Steak Ministry Bar & Grill. Image credit: Dean Cambray.
Le Bon Ton | Collingwood
A late night smokehouse, oyster bar, and absinthe saloon, Collingwood's Le Bon Ton sure has it goin' on. And it's alllll about the pit-smoked meats here, baby! Their signature jalapeno and sharp cheddar bratwursts, cooked over cherry wood coals, are the stuff legends are made of. Make sure you also try their 18-hour mesquite-smoked grain-fed Angus beef brisket, and the 12-hour mesquite-smoked pork shoulder, both offered in half-pound serves. Or get all of the above on a single board for just $45 (you know you want to). Sides? We say the Texas Chilli Cheese Fries.
Fancy Hank's Bar-B-Que | Melbourne CBD
Currently smokin' lunch and dinner at The Mercat Cross Hotel, Fancy Hank's Bar-B-Que is one of our go-tos when we're on the hunt for a meaty Melbourne restaurant. While the menu boasts a host of carnivorous treats, including pulled pork, sticky ribs, and beer-can chicken, the real standout is their ever-so-tender Angus beef brisket. Polish it off with a dipped-on-demand Doughboys doughnut (heck, you've come this far).
Big Boy BBQ | Various Locations
At Big Boy BBQ, meals are platters, served on trays, not plates. Go the Big Boy—a tray of saucy beef brisket, beef pastrami, pulled pork scotch fillet, pulled lamb shoulder, half a rack of Kansas City pork ribs, half a rack of lamb ribs, regular wings and three jumbo sides... Holy cholesterol! It can feed up to six people, or one (if you're a particularly big boy/girl). Still have room for dessert? You can't go by the peanut butter cream pie, available by the slice or cake. A Big Boy BBQ is only a short waddle away, with posts in Caulfield South, Richmond, and the CBD.
The Beer & Burger Bar.
The Beer & Burger Bar | Richmond
Serving up some of the best burgers in Melbourne, The Beer & Burger Bar is sure to meet (meat?) all of your carnivorous fantasies. Traditionalists won't be disappointed with The Beef Burger, topped with smoked bacon and beetroot relish, given a generous squirt of American mustard, tomato sauce, and aioli. Pulled pork piques your fancies? (Um, do we even need to ask?) The Beer & Burger Bar serve one of the best roast pork burgers in town, complete with salty scratching, grilled pineapple, apple relish and a crispy Asian 'slaw (so good it was deemed one of Australia's best burgers!). What's more, The Beer & Burger Bar also offer a Game Burger, with everything from kangaroo to rabbit gracing the rotating menu. All this, washed down with one (or six?) of the 40 beers and ciders on offer. Get there, STAT.
Little Bertie Café | Richmond
Adjoining the popular Bertie's Butcher on Swan Street, Little Bertie cooks up quality meats low 'n' slow on the BBQs every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night. Buffalo wings are just $1 for starters, while a BBQ plate with your choice of slow-cooked BBQ beef, pork, or lamb, plus a side salad such as Jamaican bean rice for $20. Wash it down with a brew or two from Mountain Goat, White Rabbit, and Little Creatures and you've pretty much got the ultimate BBQ. With virtually no signage, Little Bertie can be a little tricky to find, so head down Shakespeare Lane and let your nose lead the way.
Pastuso | Melbourne CBD
A joint effort from Peruvian chef Alejandro Sarvia and the folk from San Telmo, Pastuso is a hot new Peruvian pisco bar, cevicheria and (most importantly) grill, tucked down ACDC Lane, and one of our favourite new Melbourne restaurants. Meat lovers won't be disappointed with Pastuso's carnivorous offerings, the restaurant using a clindro peruano—a Peruvian smoking chamber—to cook a succulent slow-cooked lamb leg and pork shoulder. After an authentic Peruvian feed? Try the alpaca shoulder, cooked over the charcoal grill, and the anticuchos, beef heart and swordfish skewers. Yep, really!
Lazerpig | Collingwood
Known as the home of some of Melbourne's best pizza, Lazerpig also boast a mighty fine chargrilled meat offering. Incredibly juicy, tender, and sliced to order, the chargrill is available from Thursday to Saturday, with the Lazerpig crew switching it up depending on what looks best at the butcher that morning. Whether it's melt-in-your-mouth lamb or slow-cooked beef short rib smothered in chipotle BBQ sauce, Lazerpig will make all your meat dreams come true.
Meatmaiden | Melbourne CBD
Meat lovers, meet Meatmaiden. Owned by the folk behind Meatmother, Meatmaiden is the CBD's newest meat hall, churning out brisket, ribs, and other delicious American BBQ fare. The stand out of the menu? The Rangers Valley Wagyu brisket, rubbed with Tassie pepper berry and smoked for 20 (yes, 20!) hours. The Gippsland beef short rib, cooked low 'n' slow in the smoker, is another melt-in-your-mouth, makes-your-soul-sing winner. Oh, and while you're there make sure you try the southern fried chicken ribs with tequila mayo and the lobster mac 'n' cheese. You can thank us later.
Mrs Kim's Grill | Carnegie
On our quest to find Melbourne's best Korean BBQ restaurants (it's a tough job, people!), we stumbled across Mrs Kim's Grill, a popular Carnegie Korean joint famous for (you guessed it) their barbecued meat. Mrs Kim's offers barbecue sets designed for two people—appropriately titled 'oink', 'baa', 'cluck' and 'moo'—that are cooked on the table-top grills by staff. Pig out on the 'oink' set, which contains a lip-numbingly good pork belly.
Charcoal Grill on The Hill | Kew
An old-school steak house, Charcoal Grill on The Hill is a go-to for any self-respecting red meat-eater. Their menu is short and sweet, with steak the centrepiece (literally… It's on display). Start with chevapchichi—lightly spiced skinless sausages—before you pick your cut from the cabinet and get stuck into your meaty main. All steak, dry-aged on site, is available in 300g, 500g, or 700g. Match your main with a bottle of plonk from their impressive wine list—they're said to have one of the best selections of reds in Melbourne.
B'Churrasco | Melbourne CBD
In case you didn't know, Brazilians know a thing or two about meat. At B'Churrasco, large skewers of meat are brought to your table and carved onto your plate until you plead for mercy. B'Churrasco offers 12 types of meat, so don your stretchiest of pants, order a caipirinha and get stuck in!
Image Credit: In Sock Monkey Slippers