When I first started writing for FoodieHub, I was flown over to Singapore for a decadent weekend of eating where I met other bloggers in their fold, including David Hagger from The World Loves Melbourne.
So heading over to Melbourne to catch up with FoodieHub’s CEO Jeffrey, his wife and David for our Attica visit was something I’d been looking forward to since the invitation came my way. And though I landed late and missed the festivities taking place during the Saturday lunchtime, I still managed to catch up with David again before flying back to Perth as he extended an offer for me to come to the newly opened Royal Stacks burger bar where they were putting on a sample lunch for him to blog about.
The owner, Dani Zeini, is arguably Australia’s burger king. This is his fifth burger venue in Melbourne, following the successes of Dandenong Pavilion, Grand Trailer Park Taverna, Easey’s and Truck Stop Deluxe. Royal Stacks is modelled after US burger chain Shake Shack, which Dani has eaten firsthand after munching over 40 different burgers when last holiday there.
The fit out suits the Collins Street CBD location, with a big open window out the front showing the live garden wall that changes and grows with the seasons, and the pink neon burger sign that adorns the opposite wall.
Down the back where we sit, it’s humming with activity – it might be past lunchtime on a Monday but this place is pumping out burger after burger. It’s safe to say that this place has definitely opened with a bang.
Since we’re there to try their range of burgers, Dani comes out quickly with a tray of items for us to devour. There’s three different burgers which we happily cut down the middle so we get to try them all.
They’re all beef burgers, which theirs is completely free from GMO, hormones and antibiotics. All the ingredients are locally sourced, and unlike other burger places Royal Stacks offer only beef as the protein with the one exception of a single vegetarian burger with a chickpea patty.
The first burger we decide to try is the smallest of the group, the Miss Elizabeth ($11.50). It’s an all Australian pasture fed beef patty, minced fresh daily topped with swiss cheese and truffle mayo. Yes, this is my kind of burger on paper. In reality it’s delicious but oh so rich – something I’m happy I shared rather than tried to tackle on it’s own as it easily would have defeated me. That being said, the beef was well seasoned and cooked medium rare so it had that lovely pink centre full of juice.
Next up was my favourite, the Bacon Bacon ($13.90), which is two all Australian pasture fed beef patties with double bacon, American cheddar, caramelised onion, American mustard, tomato sauce and pickles. It’s a classic burger really and extremely flavourful, bursting with deliciousness in every bite.
Our final burger was the best seller, their Single Stack ($8.90). By now I was too full to really get into this burger but it’s a beef patty with tomato, butter lettuce, American cheddar, special burger sauce and pickles. It looked a treat and I like that you have the option to upgrade to a Double Stack if you’re so inclined.
I’m not sure how these compare to Melbourne burgers but compared to Perth the pricing is really reasonable without compromising on the flavours or the ingredients used. I was impressed, though I still maintain that Perth’s Short Order Burger are my favourite and by far the best burgers I’ve ever tried.
Alongside our burgers were a large serving of french fries ($4.00) which is a natural choice to enjoy with this kind of food. What I do like on their menu is you have a few different options for sides including cheese fries, potato gems AND cheese gems. Very cool. I also liked that you can add extras in your burgers (which is standard) but the list of extras has a mac and cheese croquette. I’m actually a little devastated I didn’t get to try this for myself!
Since I was plane-bound in a few hours I declined the offer of a milkshake, but David enjoyed his Blue Heaven flavoured one ($8.50).
However I wasn’t completely crazy – I did say yes to a “concrete mixer” which is a frozen custard served in a cup with a topping added ($7.50). French Vanilla Custard with Oreo sprinkled over the top, it was some yummy stuff though I did question the pricing for the size given the burgers are so cost affordable.
A great meal to put me into a food coma for my flight – and handy for me it was only a couple minutes walk away from the airport bus shuttle. So convenient! Big thanks to David for sharing his invitation with me, and Dani for so generously hosting our lunch.