The dude food trend continues to race through Melbourne, this time in the form of Short Order.
Every Wednesday night Texan barbecue specialists Red River BBQ and ‘honorary Texan’ BurgerMary (aka Jess also from Sugadeaux Cupcakes) take over the kitchen at relaxed boozer The Workers Club and sell out their short, affordable menu of Texas-style barbecue favourites.

In fact, since opening two weeks ago they’ve been so busy that I really recommend you get in quickly when they start service at 6pm. Be prepared for a bit of a wait for your food if you hit peak hour around 7:30pm – we had to hover to get a table and every time the waitress brought food over the person who received it cheered like they’d won bingo!

I’ve never been to Texas so I can’t say whether their Texas style barbecue is authentic – a quick Wikipedia search says that in fact Texas barbecue can be divided into East, West, Central and South Texas styles – but let’s just say it’s very, very tasty.

The food is unfussy and messy and made to be eaten with your hands. There are two sandwich on offer – one of pulled pork ($13) and the other of brisket ($14). Both meats are dry-rubbed with spices and then smoked on American oak chips for up to fourteen hours, resulting in melt-in the mouth meat in your burger. The brisket has sold out earlier every time but the pulled pork is no consolation prize – the meat is so tender you barely have to chew and I loved the creamy and crunchy coleslaw accompaniment.

Also worth trying are the chicken wings ($8 for 6). There’s no proper barbecue without finger-licking wings and you have a choice of three marinades – Red River BBQ (a bottle of which you can buy for $10), honey mustard or habanero hot. I didn’t find the habanero too spicy at all and the ranch dressing ($1) wasn’t really needed to temper the heat.

Every week there are specials such as beer and molasses beans which were on offer the night I went.

Burger, wings, beer. The formula for a perfect barbecue in Fitzroy.

Red River BBQ and BurgerMary Short Order, The Workers Club, cnr Brunswick and Gertrude St, Fitzroy

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