We’re waiting outside 8bit. in Footscray. The fading afternoon sun drapes lazily over us like a comforting hug from an old friend (in this case, I like to imagine the old friend is actually melted cheese). The smell of bacon is in the air. We all know why we’re here. Nobody is wearing their crisp whites. We ’bout to go to town on some burgers and I don’t care who knows it.
8bit. is part of the welcome trend of old-fashioned greasy burger joints that have seen a bit of a resurgence in the past ~five years. It’s comforting to know that if you ever wake up in a strange place with a killer hangover and a pocketful of Polish currency, you won’t have to travel very far to find yourself a decent double cheese to devour while you puzzle over how the fuck you managed to smuggle yourself in and out of a foreign country on the other side of the planet.
So let’s get down to it. 8bit. goes for that diner-style thin hamburger that gets you that maximum surface area for the grill-char to permeate the burger’s overall flavour. They do this well, managing to keep the burgers tender and juicy.
Rach picked the After Burner; a spicy, melty concoction that ended up as a mushy mess at the bottom of the little cardboard container. Issues with structural integrity aside, this was a tasty little wench with a satisfying kick of heat – the kind of burger you want to clamp with one vice-like hand from the bottom until you’ve truly conquered it.
I couldn’t go past the Double Dragon burger. How could I ignore my twin loves of 2D beat-em-ups and multiplied bacon? It’s basically the quintessential double cheeseburger and it definitely scored some points in my book.
You know that feeling when you’re on your way home and you stop by Mickey Ds thinking I’ll just have myself one little double cheese and eat it quietly and nobody has to know about it except for me and that’s fine because I’m an adult and I can make my own decisions? And then a little bit later while you’re crying from shame in the bathroom? Think of how good that tastes and multiply that by three and that’s how good the Double Dragon is. I highly recommend it.
8bit. also offers up a surprisingly diverse range of sides in addition to its selection of hot dogs, shakes and desserts. We wolfed down a couple of containers of gems and onion rings which were crisp and well-seasoned. I was especially grateful for the little tubs of sauce that may or may not have also been used to dip my entire burger into when no one was looking. Note the excellent collection of condiments in the picture below:
8bit. knows what it’s doing and does it well – it makes tasty, satisfying burgers. If you’re after towering slabs of fancy brioche and caviar-fed wagyu from cows that were raised by monks and only ever told nice things, then you’re in the wrong place. If you’re craving a proper burger without the pretension, then this is what you want and you can get it here at a decent price. Crazy delicious.