So much has changed in the space of a few years in the Melbourne drinking and dining scene that I found myself at a bit of a loss as to how to prioritise restaurants and bars to visit. In the end, it ended up being mostly an Urbanspoon and GPS-driven adventure with a few pre-organised targets thrown in.
|Belle's Diner, Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, Melbourne|
It was like moths to the bulb-lit 'diner' sign after a few drinks and bar hopping in the Melbourne CBD, and we ordered ambitiously with our not-entirely-sober eyes.
|Salted caramel milkshake|
A perfect balance of salt and caramel with just a hint of burnt toffee flavour, this glass of creamy, frothy milk was enough to keep me happy for the rest of the night.
|Crispy Southern fried chicken with slaw|
The Southern fried chicken comprised various cuts on the bone in a fresh, golden spiced batter, a bit dry in places but pretty darn awesome overall.
It was served with a house barbeque-ish sauce and red cabbage coleslaw that seemed unseasoned and undressed, somewhat detracting from the chicken and dish overall.
Meanwhile the salad the fritters were served with came with extremely unripe, inedible cubes of avocado among the leaves, radishes and tomato.
Playing stacks-on were melted cheese on the pattie, a fried egg, bacon, grilled pineapple ring, lettuce and sauce. On the whole, it was a tasty if not difficult to eat burger which would have been an ideal booze-soaker - had we not had two other mains on the table.
It might have been an off night but it seems there's a bit of retro style over substance at Belle's Diner - mostly forgiven with that salted caramel milkshake, though. More Melbourne eats posts to come.