Chilli. You either get it, or you don't. Why would anyone want a mouth full of fire? A racing heart and constricted lungs? A streaming nose and eyes? And worst of all, a potentially painful trip to the toilet the next day?

Because the endorphin rush is pure bliss, that's why.

These spots get it. Collectively they offer some of the most volcanic dishes in Melbourne, with heat levels to challenge even the most seasoned chilli fiend.

For the less experienced: if the going gets too hot, know that water's not your friend. Capsaicin, the active ingredient in chilli, isn't water-soluble and you'll just spread the heat around your mouth even more. You're better off with bread, rice, beer, or in the most extreme cases, a cold glass of milk.

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Dodee Paidang

Tackle a tom yum soup, if you dare. The spice level is rated from zero to seven and owner Somporn Phosri once told us, "Level seven will blow your head off – even I can’t eat it.”

Basement 353 Little Collins, Melbourne

Dainty Sichuan South Yarra

There's plenty choose from, but the fiery, numbing Chongqing chicken is the go-to.

176 Toorak Road, South Yarra

Spice Temple

Kung Pao Chicken. Fire-Water Beef. As at Dainty Sichuan, you can't go too wrong.

Crown Melbourne 8 Whiteman Street, Southbank

The Rochester Hotel

This pub's menu is inspired by Kerala, a state in India's southwest renowned for its love of spice.

202 Johnston Street, Fitzroy

Kustom Burgers

Order The Hot Rod burger with scorching habanero "Hero Sauce".

861 High Street, Thornbury

Chin Chin

The jungle curry and papaya salad are loaded with addictive scud chillies. But if you're a real hero, order the Isaan-style barbequed chicken.

125 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Jinda Thai

Just look for the three red chillies beside the hottest dishes.

1-7 Fergus Street, Abbotsford

Leonard’s House of Love

Those XXX Wings are "spicy as".

3 Wilson Street, South Yarra

Trunk Diner

All about those Stupid-Hot Wings.

275 Exhibition Street, Melbourne

Belles Hot Chicken Fitzroy

Just ask for your chicken "Really Fucking Hot".

150 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy

Hakata Gensuke Hawthorn

How about some "God Fire" ramen?

Tenancy 4 860/862 Glenferrie Road, Hawthorn

Smoke and Pickles

A restaurant founded by a hot-sauce company. Enough said.

256 Glen Eira Road, Elsternwick
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