After sitting stoutly on Acland Street for over 30 years, Greasy Joe’s was starting to blend in with the locals – but not in a good way. Overrun with backpackers attracted to the cheap, greasy food, it’s fair to say the St Kilda institution had passed its heyday.
So when the iconic spot went up for sale, Rob Gringlas jumped on it and has since spent the last six weeks showing the neglected interior a bit of love. The old bar’s wooden panels have been replaced with tiny white tiles, the faded leather booths reupholstered and the tables sanded back to reveal a nice wooden finish. All in all, old Joe’s has scrubbed up pretty nicely.
But the main change comes with the updated menu. The grease is out and fresh, locally sourced produce is in. With a New Yorker in the kitchen, the focus is again on American style food. Think pulled pork rolls with barbeque sauce, apple chutney and crackling and simple but tasty charred corn on the cob.
But the highlight – and arguably the reason you come to Joe’s in the first place – is the burgers. There’s no mucking around here. These burgers are big, meaty and packed with extras. They also come with hand cut, thrice cooked chips and a neat little side salad.
This is a beer and burger kind of place, so don’t go expecting anything fancy. But it’s nice to see an old local stalwart get a second chance at life.
Joe's Bar and Dining Hall
64–66 Acland Street, St Kilda
(03) 9525 3755
Mon to Wed 5pm–12am
Fri & Sat 12pm-1am