Two of the team behind the Sweetwater Inn have teamed up with a friend to open the south-side's coolest new bar, Leonard's House of Love. The venue celebrates all things simple and tasty—bourbon, charcoal chicken and open fires—all set within a 70s lounge-style log cabin venue. It's one of the best dive bars in Melbourne for a laid-back beer with friends or a chow down on some delicious no-frills food (burgers, fried chicken and loaded fries, as well as salad and mash combos).
The fried chicken, in particular, is insanely good: big gnarly hunks of breast meat, fried to an amber gold. They emit some sort of crackle symphony when you bite into them, and come served with tangy spiked mayo and a sweet dill pickle. The pickle is actually a nice touch. Definitely cuts down on the grease-guilt factor, leaving your mouth primed for a second bowl (warning: grease-guilt may increase after second bowl). We're calling it: best chicken in South Yarra.
Image credit: Griffin Simm