This long-running live music venue also has a great menu of fried chicken and burgers.
Carlton's John Curtin Hotel — mostly known as simply The Curtin — is a stalwart in Melbourne's live music scene. It hosts gigs all through the week — international bands (Girlpool and The Libertines have recently graced the stage) fill in the schedule along with Melbourne faves and up-and-comers launching EPs.
Plus, there's some great pub grub. Sonny's Fried Chicken & Burgers currently has a residency in the pub's kitchen, matching its loaded gig lineup with an offering of American-style chicken. The signature bird is brined for 24 hours, then pressure fried for a perfectly crisp finish. It's a true connoisseur's menu with a fix for any sort of chicken craving, from a two-piece feed of dark or white meat, to a full bird divvied up into "eight pieces of awesome". There are also more sides than you can poke a drumstick at, including Southern-style classics like smokey slow-cooked beans, a zesty bean salad and creamy mash drenched in house gravy.