Whether you've been counting sleeps or are completely ambivalent towards another burger joint from a high-profile chef, Shannon Bennett's Benny Burger opens this Friday in Richmond to give Neil Perry's Burger Project a run for its money.
The first Benny Burger opened at Sydney International Airport last year to mixed reviews, mostly relating to $19 burger prices that are thankfully a little softer this side of the border. A burger in Melbourne will cost you about $15, which still pushes the envelope, but covers the likes of Blackmore's wagyu beef.
The chain's tagline is "the ethical burger" and almost every ingredient on the extensive menu is preceded by the word local or organic.
It's a fairly 'Merican-looking menu, including cheese fries and concrete shakes, all made with local ingredients.
Beyond a (mostly) classic cheeseburger (it's local cheddar, not sticky American cheese listed with the double patties, pickles, onion and sauces), there's a vegetarian beetroot and chickpea burger with coleslaw, a chicken burger, a potato cake and a pointed retort to Momofuku founder David Chang's article of two years ago panning Australian burgers.
The Chang stars the classic Aussie combo of fried egg and beetroot, and is marked on the menu by a hand flipping the bird.
To celebrate the opening on Saturday the store will be offering a free burger to the first 100 customers and hosting DJs.
95 Swan Street, Richmond, 03 9691 3888, bennyburger.com.au