'Tis the season to start carb-loading, and these sandwiches are the cheese-packing, life-affirming tools for the job
Chef Chris Hamburger laughs in the face of cardiac danger. Here, a breakfast sandwich takes the shape of chunky white break with a chewy crust stuffed with thick cut bacon, sharp cheddar, molten hot tomato and the all-saving vinegary grace of his own HP sauce. He finishes his hand meal off by pan frying that sucker golden brown and serving it with a garnish of a pickled egg. Because protein. Fitzroy.
Two Row is a craft beer bar first and foremost, but forget those five taps dispensing the weirdest and wildest brews this town has ever seen – we’re here for the bar menu consisting entirely of grilled cheese. There’s a fig and fennel bread number stuffed with blue cheese, but we’re all about the Dan – so named because the shell is a pretzel bun, custom-made by Dan at Melbourne’s best bagel house, Five and Dime. That extra crunchy, chewy and slightly sweet shell is filled with the foot-ripe funk of gruyere, salty ham and a seeded beer mustard with a bit of a hop kick. It’s a potent sandwich, made better still by a sharp garlicky pickle. Fitzroy.
Fancy jaffles and wraps is the name of the game at this back alley South Melbourne lunchery. You’ll find the window just off Clarendon Street, with a rotation of options from crimp-edged mushroom, spinach and cheese sauce toasties to their current “anything can be jaffled!” genius creation: the cheeseburger jaffle. A well-seasoned pattie goes twixt white bread (or wholemeal if you must – but must you?), with molten cheese, plenty of American mustard, ketchup and slices of dill pickles. Word from the wise: watch those vinegary disks, they burn like fire. South Melbourne.
Downstairs is a cheese cellar, rich with the scent of delicious mould. Upstairs is a sandwich counter. The rest is delicious history. They have a rich three-cheese mix here which they spread liberally onto soft white rolls or dense, caraway-rich rye bread before putting it to the grill. All we know is that is has a little bit of funk, a lot of sharpness and plenty of post-grill ooze. It also has the fresh crunch benefit of spring onion flecks, and better yet, you can get the mix in tubs to take home. Melbourne.
Down Port Melbourne way you’ll find this sweet little adjunct to Rose Diner, serving big shakes and dolled up hot sandwiches. It might be sopressa and double cream brie or coronation chicken – creamy, cuminy chopped bird that was the height of dining sophistication in the ‘70s. We like to come here and make it a full toastie meal, staring with a mince and fried egg number and closing off with a banana and nutella sandwich and a lamington thickshake. Boom. Port Melbourne.