Fancy Hank's first made its name in the world of BBQ and smoked meats when founders Mike Patrick and Kent Bell would haul their original smoker to parties and events around Melbourne. They soon stepped up to become one of the leaders in low 'n' slow when they opened their sprawling venue in the Mercat pub overlooking the Vic Market, where a growing family of smokers would fire up at dawn and entice all-comers late into the night.
Then, with redevelopment taking precedence at Vic Market, Fancy Hank's moved lock, stock and multiple smoking beasts to a new home in Bourke Street. There, the focus remains the same (with even more BBQ power under their apron-covered belts): some of the best smoked meats served alongside carefully curated accompanying dishes, from salads and pickles to devilled eggs, mac and cheese and more.
Of course, as even the briefest of glances at any Good Beer Week program over the years will tell you, BBQ goes great with beer and that remains a core part of the offering at the new, fancier, Fancy Hank's. If anything, the selection has grown since the move to the city, with favourites like Two Birds, Fixation and Mountain Goat on tap and a bottle and can lineup that has you covered whether you're in the mood for comparing, cutting or contrasting.
Want a big, bitter IPA to go toe to toe with the slab of meat in front of you? There's a bunch of those. In mood for something rich and dark so meld with the caramelised sauces? Take your pick. Feeling like something a little fancy? There's barrel aged, sour and spiced beers too.
The good times continue upstairs, where Good Heavens will sate your every boozy desire at a rooftop bar serving up cocktails and spirits galore, with a wine and beer list similar to that found at Hank's.
If this all sounds great but off limits if you're vegetarian, fear not as two-thirds of the menu is vego (albeit not two-thirds of the food from the smoker) and they'll look after vegans too. Time to get Fancy!