Belle’s Diner

April 25, 2013

150-156 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy


Note: Belle’s Diner has since been rebranded Belle’s Hot Chicken. While I’ll miss their burgers, more fried chicken can only be a good thing in my opinion.

You may have noticed the new wave of American dining spots popping up around Melbourne – it’s the latest craze following the Mexican wave of 2011-12. One such place is Belle’s Diner on Gertrude street, serving up burgers and southern fried chicken to the discerning Fitzroy crowd. I headed over with S and A a little while ago to try out their burgers, having heard Alice rave about them for several weeks.

Long and narrow with a tiled bench and booths, it looks like a proper diner from any American movie you’ve ever seen. I especially liked the dressing-room style lights spelling the word Diner, visibile from the street as a sort of beacon for those seeking good and unfussy food. Plywood booths are ex-Myer cafeteria according to Epicure, and I can imagine enjoying a nightcap or two at the bar.
The menu is simple and uncomplicated – stand out items are the Spring Bay mussels, the burgers and the southern style fried chicken, served with slaw and BBQ sauce. At the table next to us was a lady enjoying an enormous salad of kale, anchovy and walnuts, so there’s some healthy stuff available too (although surely there’s such a thing as too much kale? This plate was about a foot high).

Naturally, both boys and I ordered a burger each, and they arrived promptly from the kitchen, an enormous plate of beef and bread and potato. Time to tuck in.

The Dinerr burger, a Twin Peaks reference, comes with a juicy wagyu patty, the usual greenery and a tangy sauce of chopped gherkins and mayo. Full-blown Americano, absolutely sensational. I also appreciated the use of a big bready bun rather than the usual brioche bread. Fries are done in a house-made version of Bay Seasoning, a salty mix of paprika and celery salt.

Also popular is the fried green tomato burger, though I can never seem to go past the allure of beef and cheese in a bun.

For dessert, the three of us shared a couple of their home made pies, including a very prettily presented key lime meringue pie. Nice citrus flavour without being overwhelmingly sour, and a pleasant biscuity base.

The lime pie was good, but the hands down winner was the peanut butter cheesecake, a sinfully good mix of peanuts, cream cheese and chocolate. Hot diggity darn it was delicious, we wiped the plate clean! A must try if you’re visiting Belle’s – highly recommended for those of you wishing to opt into the American craze.

I realise this is the second burger post I’ve done in a row, so here’s another food blog dedicated to the beefy glory that is the burger. The men at Burger Friday are pretty darn dedicated to their craft – worth a look if you’re interested in Melbourne’s best burger.

Belle's Diner on Urbanspoon

Filed under: American, Burgers, Fitzroy