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4.7 /6 Excellent 95 Reviews

Third Wave Cafe

Port Melbourne American $$ +100
1 person
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About Third Wave Cafe

Third Wave serves great coffee and interesting breakfast options. At lunch and dinner we transform into an American BBQ restaurant serving Slow Smoked Pork & Beef Ribs, Beef Brisket, Chicken and more. In addition, there are Paleo options. Third Wave has established itself as arguably the best American BBQ restaurant in Melbourne. We serve the most amazingly flavoursome Slow Smoked meats and fish. From juicy, meaty Pork Ribs and Brisket to Smoked Salmon. There is an extensive range of sides including Glazed Mushrooms, Duck Fat Confit Potatoes and Smoked Mac and Cheese. The other specialty is Paleo and Russian (the owners are Russian so thought it would be appropriate to add a small selection of Russian Classics). During the day we serve great breakfast options and really good coffee.

Opening Hours

  • Monday 07:00 - 22:00
  • Tuesday 07:00 - 22:00
  • Wednesday 07:00 - 22:00
  • Thursday 07:00 - 22:00
  • Friday 07:00 - 22:00
  • Saturday 08:00 - 22:00
  • Sunday 08:00 - 22:00
Third Wave Cafe, Rouse Street 189, 3207 Port Melbourne

Further Information

First things first: the coffee. At Port Melbourne’s Third Wave Cafe, owner Inga has searched far and wide for Australia’s best cup of joe, and after months of careful contemplation, she decided on 5 Senses, a local roaster whose single-roast coffees and superlative blends are the talk of Melbourne’s gourmet coffee scene. Plus, having received training from some of the world’s best baristas, Inga and her staff really know their stuff – this is a cafe you can count on for an exceptional espresso. Followers of the paleo diet will also be pleased to know that Third Wave Cafe has numerous options on offer, like the healthy zucchini fritters made with buckwheat flour and zucchini, fried in coconut oil and served alongside homemade smoked bacon, pickled honey tomatoes, poached egg and dukkah, as well as numerous other items that can be made paleo upon request.

Alongside Melbourne’s finest caffeinated beverages, Third Wave Cafe’s kitchen churns out some of the city’s very best barbecue dishes during lunch and dinner – that’s American-style barbecue, to be exact – as well as Russian specialties from Inga’s homeland like blintzes, pelmeni (dumplings) and syrniki (savoury pancakes). The American barbecue menu at this great restaurant on Port Melbourne’s Rouse Street includes favourites like slow smoked pork & beef ribs with meat that falls off the bone, pulled-pork sliders, beef brisket (smoked eight to ten hours!), chicken and sandwiches galore, plus an array of sides including the beloved duck fat confit potatoes, smoked mac and cheese and glazed mushrooms. Even better, the cafe opens up early for breakfast and serves incredible eggs, parfaits, muffins and satisfying platters. Make sure to reserve ahead!


95 Reviews

4.7 /6 Excellent 95 Reviews
Atmosphere: entertaining
Food: delicious
Waiting Time: short
Service: friendly
Noise: quiet
Quality/Price: cheap
36 6
24 5
17 4
11 3
3 2
4 1
1 review so far 6
22.04.2017 19:15

Had a great night, vibrant atmosphere, food was delicious and very filling. Service was great. Cocktails and wines were also amazing!!! Great place to go with a group. Will def. go back soon

1 review so far 6
16.04.2017 09:06

The best meat I've had in a long while, very generous portions too. Great selections of beer. Nice staff and reasonable prices. I highly recommend it.

1 review so far 6
15.04.2017 18:01

Everything was great!! We had the brisket & beef ribs with a side if onion rings and spicy beer-battered chips. Loved every bite!! Highly recommended

1 review so far 6
13.04.2017 10:10

Super yummy food, reasonable prices, big portions and really friendly staff! I recommend the beef ribs and the nutella and peanut butter tart! Will definitely be going back!

1 review so far 6
15.10.2016 14:40

Friendly relaxed service. Food is fantastic and serves are pretty big. Bring an appetite. It's all about the meat here, and friends the meat is very good. The brisket is about as beefy as they come and a goes nicely in their take on a Reuben. We'll definately return again to sample some more of the menu. Believe the hype!

2 reviews so far 6
07.12.2016 10:51

The food was amazing (as always). The only issue we had was that despite booking through Quandoo, they did not have our booking (I even had the email from Quandoo to confirm that I had the right time/day/location). Thankfully they had space available, otherwise it would have been really frustrating. But, the service and food were fantastic!

1 review so far 6
18.02.2016 10:39

Third Wave was everything you expect it to be, the food was unbelievable and staff and atmosphere was fantastic. I will definitely be going back for more. From the starters to the Pork ribs and the burgers the place is amazing, already recommended it to a friend and he is going on Sat with the partner

1 review so far 5
17.02.2017 09:08

Expensive, but the food was good. Service was ok, waiter might be new to the job as was a bit confused about answering questions about portion sizes for the sides! Don't order the large portion size of potatoes unless there are 50 of you to eat them! ;-) We came away stuffed and had to go for a long walk after!!

1 review so far 3
13.11.2016 09:02

The environment was very average and some of meals appear to be compatible with this type of eatery but in fact are not ,rather they are expensive based on portion and quality ,also we waited 1 hour for a an entree of chips and onion rings - they prioritise take away Orders in place of sit down diners . Overall the food was good but not brilliant or compatible to a typical BBQ or grill restaurant - it's very much a cafe trying to become a restaurant - for the cost I much rather attend the railway hotel.

1 review so far 6
05.09.2016 15:28

We were there for the Father's Day degustation, the food was amazing and plenty of it! Staff members were friendly and very accomodating, even offering the left overs and half the desserts to take home as we were too full to finish. Overall a fantastic experience!

1 review so far 6
13.11.2016 21:20

The food was wonderful! I had the Hangover... Over and it did what the name promised, all the while being delicious. Staff was great, too, and the service was quick. I definitely plan on heading back there to try all the food

1 review so far 6
14.05.2016 21:50

Fantastic ribs, best in the Southern Hemisphere, and the peanut butter milkshakes are amazing. Ensure you try the Juicy Lucy JD aged cheddar patties, and the Candy Bacon is superb. Great personable service too; highly recommended!

1 review so far 3
28.02.2016 12:28

Ribs were disappointing, not American style at all and definitely not "arguably the best American ribs in Melbourne" Waitstaff was lovely but when drinks were ordered I had to ask where my partners Coke was as the drinks weren't brought out together for some reason and took a while to come out to us....two drinks shouldn't take 15mins to get to the customer, especially when there wasn't many customers at the venue

1 review so far 6
14.12.2016 08:16

The table was there waiting for us even we arrived 15min late, food was great and not too expensive, we shared one main dish a full rack which was enough for two of us with leftovers.

1 review so far 6
19.02.2017 14:11

Nice place there relaxing lovely staff and the food well what can I say Yum Yum Yum , burgers 🍔 And the ribs thank you for the lovely night and we will be back 😊😁

1 review so far 6
05.12.2016 14:07

Very reasonably priced tasty food. Has many tables inside and also outside. Lots to choose from on the menu and also a variety of alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks. Staff were very nice and attentive.

1 review so far 4
07.08.2016 08:52

Food fantastic as always. Service not that attentive & a bit slow the night we went probably due to the factory line of outgoing delivery orders. A testament to how great the food is - everyone is ordering it to be delivered! Might take that approach next time rather than eating in.

1 review so far 6
07.08.2016 19:11

I had the juicy Lucy with extra juicy patty today it was absolutely amazing. Wife got the ribs and couldn't finish them off so lucky me I got to finish them off soo yumm

1 review so far 5
06.03.2017 23:02

The excellent quality of food and customer service make you feel an honoured guest. The tender, juicy, sweety bbq ribs meal is perfect. The tasty salad and fries are not ordinary side dish but already full meal by themselves :)

1 review so far 5
25.01.2017 08:23

Food was excellent and didn't take too long to arrive after we ordered. However we sat with dirty dishes on our table for more than 30 mins after our meal. I ordered the lamb shoulder - which was delicious!

1 review so far 5
26.03.2016 07:44

We had a great time. Food was great. I wish they had more variety. I wish they had options for kids as well as the kids found some of the food too spicy. We will be back next time.

1 review so far 5
21.09.2016 09:44

Awesome food which made for a great night, wanted to give the "all you can eat buffet" a go but the process seemed a little convoluted, happy with our decision to pick and enjoy from the regular menu

1 review so far 4
01.05.2016 10:07

The food was very tasty. Exceptional. However, the wait staff needs to be more friendly. Our waitress could hardly muster a smile making the experience somber and quite dull. Location is good, street tables cater for smokers and the vibe is generally relaxed and welcoming.

1 review so far 6
26.02.2017 17:14

Fantastic food and great service. Overall it was a great dining experience didn't have to wait long for our meal and we weren't disappointed with the food it was delicious.

1 review so far 4
08.05.2016 22:04

The food was quite good, service was a bit of a let down though. Not friendly & we had about 10 minutes between the first meal & last meal arriving for a group of 7. Maybe just a bad day, would give it another go.

1 review so far 5
15.05.2016 07:52

Great food and great service. Will definitely go back. We had the lamb quesadilla and classic burger. Both delicious and reasonably priced for the quality. Still need to try the rest of the amazing menu!

1 review so far 6
10.09.2016 22:02

Best Pork Ribs in Melbourne, fall off the bone and melts in your mouth goodness !!! Been coming back for the food and won't be disappointed, worth the wait.

1 review so far 6
07.11.2016 09:56

Great food, pork and beef ribs fall off the bone, we love this place. Milkshakes are creamy and a great range of flavours, try the bacon candy too!

1 review so far 6
22.05.2016 16:44

The staff were friendly and service was great. The food was amazing, best beef ribs Ive ever had, I can't stop thinking about it, will definitely be back.

1 review so far 4
30.04.2016 08:44

The restaurant itself is small but isn't overcrowded with tables and seating, wasn't noisy which s a big plus when trying to speak with our other dinner guests. The menu is good and the food was yummy and well worth the wait.

1 review so far 6
11.01.2017 08:35

Delightful friendly service, and every dish delicious, especially the lamb ribs, BBQ salmon and the lamb shoulder. I would thoroughly recommend and will be heading back for sure

1 review so far 6
27.04.2016 22:48

Pork ribs and beef ribs fell off the bone Loved the battered chips Big portion for dessert - nutella and peanut butter pie with ice cream was yum!

1 review so far 5
24.02.2017 07:37

The service was fantastic, the food was great, the place had a really good atmosphere. The burgers are huge and amazing. Also had the quesadillas as a starter; the lamb one was delicious!

1 review so far 5
14.03.2016 02:22

Excellent quality food and drink! Pretty good value, and we really liked the intimate cafe feel. The Burgers are amazing and we bought some the the apple bourbon BBQ sauce to take home.

1 review so far 3
13.03.2016 11:20

The food was good, the service was friendly if not a bit slow and forgetful. I found the main meal portion sizes very small and with now sides on the plate. I would think for $26 they might put a bit of salad on the plate? Enjoyed the night but overall not worth the $$

2 reviews so far 6
19.09.2016 10:28

This a great little place. Great BBQ. Service good and great advice regarding ordering. New fit-out looks alot more inviting!! Wine list good and prices even better

1 review so far 6
21.12.2016 16:38

Beef and pork ribs were fall off the bone delicious. Great oink balls. Service was prompt and we were able to split the bill without a problem.

1 review so far 6
07.02.2016 22:41

Fantastic place, it's wasn't busy when we went, service was fantastic, didn't have to wait long for our drinks and food, and the food was amazing !!

1 review so far 5
04.01.2016 07:50

Great smokey bbq! And fast service. Will definitely come back! Ordered the beef ribs and pork ribs and both were melt-in-your-mouth. We also ordered the kipfler fries and the kids loved that!

2 reviews so far 5
25.06.2016 20:24

Breakfast was incredibly yummy! But be warned, even the small pancake order is huge! We're not coffee drinkers ourselves, but it smelled amazing and seemed to be a popular spot for it.

3 reviews so far 6
18.02.2017 07:28

Excellent food, great atmosphere. Friendly staff. I will go back Awesome for dinner for 2. Or for a group booking. Alfresco dinning. Coffee and desserts awesome

2 reviews so far 6
28.02.2016 08:11

Best BBQ I've ever had. Not gimmicky - just good produce cooked to perfection. Great beer, great service and everything ran like clockwork. Best in town.

1 review so far 6
23.07.2016 18:14

Food was lovely especially the pulled pork burger and the hog ball sub. Prices were reasonable too. Would highly recommend and will be keen to return

1 review so far 4
01.04.2017 10:20

Oik Ball entrees very tasty, the Brisket was fall apart tender but had little smoke flavour and did not have redish ring of well smoked meat and lacked any crust on the outside. Service was good and quick.

1 review so far 6
05.06.2016 07:56

Great food on the BBQ and Russian salad. service was good ! Want to try their dinasour ribs - yummy ! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!! !! !

1 review so far 6
08.04.2017 14:25

Great food, good value, excellent service! I am sure I will go there again. I definitely recommend the food to everyone. Thanks a lot guys!

1 review so far 6
20.09.2016 18:36

Great food and value, booking was ready. Food is amazing and over the top, would definitely recommend. Prices in line with most cafés in are

1 review so far 6
26.02.2017 09:02

Amazing food, it was everything I wanted it to be. Will definitely go back. Third wave cafe gets two thumbs up from me! Yum yum!

2 reviews so far 5
22.05.2016 08:30

Great food, serving sizes are quite large! I wish I had saved room for some Key Lime Pie, but that means I have a reason to go back again soon!

1 review so far 6
20.02.2017 14:45

Fast service, friendly waitresses, food came out quite quickly, flavours were on point for every dish, I would definitely return again with my friends :)!