364 Chapel Street
South Yarra VIC 3141
+61 3 9827 1318
too busy downing AUD$9 cocktails in Jakarta shattered not to be able to attend my friend Cathy’s birthday party on the last weekend of January. So to make up for not being there to sing Cold Chisel in the karaoke room, I decided to take her out to lunch the first weekend I was back in Melbourne. Cathy wanted burgers and because she had recently been to Jus Burgers on Chapel Street and enjoyed it, we decided to go there.
Jus Burgers has been around for quite some time in Western Australia. And like all good things that come from Perth (Hungry Jack’s, apple strudels from Corica and Ben Cousins), it decided to make its mark in Melbourne. Like most burger places, you order your stuff at the counter, take a number and wait at a table. Unlike most burger places, however, Just Burgers give you little animal figurines instead of a number, which I thought was cute. Because the front section of the small eatery was packed, we ended up sitting in the back AstroTurf-ed room.
All burgers come with 100% hormone-free, grass-fed Gippsland beef, tomato, Spanish onion, aioli and relish and are priced between $10-15. There is also the option of paying an extra $5 for chips or salad, green tomato pickle and slaw, which we all did. I went for the oldie but a goodie cheeseburger ($11 on its own). Meanwhile, Aaron chose the pommy burger ($12), which was essentially a cheeseburger plus bacon while Cathy had a Spanish snag ($13 for the privilege of popping chorizo and sweet red peppers n the burger).
I couldn’t complain about the burger. I love grass-fed beef as much as any hardcore paleo health freak snob and I appreciated that they used good quality local ingredients. Sure, the burgers were great but there was just something missing and I didn’t know what. Grittiness? Heart and soul? I don’t know. In addition, I thought the slaw dressing was bland which meant that the bitterness of the cabbage leaves made eating it unpleasant. And while I did like the green tomato pickle, seriously, what is wrong with good ol’ tomato sauce?
Combined with drinks, I paid a smidgen over $65 for three burger meals. And I thought this was a rip-off. Granted, the drinks were of the Daylesford organic soft drink kind but still, I didn’t think it was great value – even if they did use top ingredients. Truth be told, I’m not sure if I was being particularly harsh, especially given that I had just got back from Indonesia where food was OMG-SO-CHEAP so maybe it’s best you check them out for yourself. At the end of the day, however, you can call me sacrilegious because I would have been just as happy with a greasy burger with the lot and chips from Andrew’s Burgers … or even Maccas (say WHAT?!).