Just when you think Melbourne has reached peak burger, we get this place. Chiquito & Co is the city’s latest all-American fried chicken and burger bar, and it’s already making a few waves in Fitzroy (Melbourne’s unofficial burger heartland).
The Chiquito concept is broadly Tex-Mex: brioche burgers, buttermilk fried chicken and frozen custard, topped with the usual assortment of stuff that makes your dentist cry.
If you’re going to open a burger restaurant in Fitzroy, you have to get the details right, and head chef Sean McGlynn has put together a whip-smart little menu. The buns are glossy butter brioche, delivered fresh every day. The crispy bacon comes from award-winning Pialligo Estate up in Canberra, and the pressed patties are 100% grass-fed Angus beef. McGlynn, along with owners Robbie and Jen, even imported a dedicated American frozen custard machine from the states (you can even watch it churning as you wait for your burger—how’s that for temptation).
And the burgers? They’re pretty effing good. If you live nearby, you’ll probably work your way through them all. But if it’s your first time at Chiquito, go either the Double Classic Angus (two patties, double cheese, pickles, tomato, onion and a triple-threat mix of mustard, ketchup and mayo) or the Chiquito (brined fried chicken, cheddar, Pialligo bacon, lettuce, slaw and chipotle mayo).
The recipes aren’t anything groundbreaking, but the execution is top-notch. You can also grab 24-hour marinated fried chicken pieces while you’re here, not to mention Chiquito’s famous cheesy pop-corn chicken—pretty much what you’re imagining in your brain right now, crispy popcorn chicken, smothered in molten cheese.
There’s a classic mix of shakes on offer (and yes, you can upgrade with malt), plus a few beers and wines if you want to glam it up a little.
Really though, you want to save stomach space for the Concretes (American frozen custards). They come in either vanilla or choc flavour, and you can pimp them out with anything from Nutella and Belgian choc fudge to flaked almonds and honeycomb. Better undo that top button in advance...
Image credit: Chiquito & Co