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Panned Pizza Bourke Street

Home > Melbourne > Cafes | Dinner | Lunch | Restaurants | Takeaway
by H. Clare Callow (subscribe)
A die-hard Melburnian who keeps being drawn away by luscious food and drinks. Be a pal and click the 'like' link below if you enjoy my article.
Published September 10th 2014
Review: a burger place far from being panned
I was dubious. I admit it.
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The light of impending food - Panned Pizza is one of the few independent places still serving at 9.30pm on a Monday night.

Panned Pizza opened up on Bourke Street in the CBD a couple of years ago. the strip houses your average late-night takeaway. You know the kind: all sorts of deep-fried options. The food you don't feel so great about the morning after.

I was desperate. No-one serves anything after 9.30pm on a Monday in the CBD, but I needed something to eat.

They were open.

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The eating challenge. Size comparison: that's a cob loaf serving as a bun.

Styled after New York pizza and hamburger joints, Panned Pizza offers pizzas and hamburgers, with a choice of sides. Burgers start at $10, which seemed a good investment for a late-night dinner, and pizzas at $12. They even have an eating challenge which looked suitably daunting. I was just about to order the plainest burger they had when my eye caught the special menu, top of which was the Juicy Lucy.
 
Juicy Lucy? Something about that name sounded familiar. The details made the memory clear: cheese, enmeshed within the burger patty. A speciality in the US and new to our shores.
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The Juicy Lucy burger: an eating challenge in itself.

Of course I got it.

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The Lucy. As promised, Juicy.
The Juicy Lucy is something that fascinated me the first time I caught sight of it on a food network show. Spelt more traditionally 'Jucy Lucy', the burger originated in Minneapolis. Two bars claim it as theirs: Matt's and the 5-8 Club. Neither have deterred other bars from adding it to their menus, and across the US you can find gooey, oozey Juicy Lucys in the oddest places. The extra-experimental ones, such as that featurng jalapeno peppers within the cheese, sound like a whole other level of eating.

And now here was one on a menu in front of me. Something about it was a bit excessive, yes, but also intriguing. The thought of biting into a burger and having cheese ooze out promised a sensual experience, something I'd not previously associated with hamburgers.

I forked over the $14 expecting to be disappointed. Things were winding down for the night; the staff looked tired. They seemed to barely maintain enough momentum to assemble my burger, which required a complicated set of tasks and at least one timer.

My burger arrived just as the guys were putting the chairs on tables. I dragged my weary carcass over to a bench and unbagged and unwrapped it.

Holy crap.

The burger was enormous. Cheese dripped from it, yellowly glinting and still flowing from the heat. The scent of onions and mustard lit the air.

My first bite confirmed what I suspected, namely that my $14 had gone to a good cause. This thing was amazing. The patty was, as the name promised, juicy, and I'm not talking just about the cheese. A blend of salts had brought out some nice browned flavours on the meat's surface. The molten cheese (say that wonderful phrase to yourself, 'molten cheese') added another dimension, a certain creaminess. The onions were perfect, and blended nicely with the mustard and sauce.

A review full of praise is as unpalatable as a cold burger, and it's here that I do find fault. As the burger cooled down the patty revealed itself as less-than-awesome. I wouldn't complain, but I felt it would be remiss to say that the Juicy Lucy was without fault.

Panned Pizza isn't dishing up Tolarno Burgers. That said, the Juicy Lucy delivered what it promised. If you're in that area of the city, Panned is a good choice.

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Why? A good burger or pizza
When: 11am-11pm Mon-Thurs; 11am-4am Fri/Sat; 12pm-11pm Sun
Phone: (03) 9663 6339
Where: 189-191 Bourke St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Cost: $5
More articles by H. Clare Callow
Your Comment
I'm guessing the cheese began to congeal as it cooled down, but I can imagine how when hot, all the gooeyness would taste delicious.
by Bryony Harrison (score: 4|11556) 1187 days ago
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