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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
Waiting Time: short
Atmosphere: entertaining
Quality/Price: cheap
Food: delicious
Service: friendly
Noise: quiet
36 6
24 5
17 4
11 3
3 2
4 1
3 reviews so far 6
09.01.2017 09:24

Went for a quick lunch break. Awesome burgers and shakes, very friendly service. Will definitely be returning and trying out their smokey ribs and brisket.

1 review so far 6
15.10.2016 16:34

Ahhhhmazing!!! Some of the best things I have ever eaten!! Top quality, great customer service, fantastic atmosphere. Could not have had a better birthday. Superwickedace!!!

1 review so far 6
01.12.2016 16:33

Great smoked BBQ food, always good service. There is a great smoked salmon option for low Fodmap eating and room for a Pram if needed

1 review so far 6
15.08.2016 11:15

Nice small place with friendly staff. The ribs were perfectly cooked, fall off the bone. As well as the burgers. Will be back for more!

1 review so far 6
15.02.2017 11:09

Great friendly service, food was flawless & they even gave my wife a beautiful rose for Valentine's day. The cocktails are also delicious. 10/10. .

2 reviews so far 4
12.01.2017 09:13

This groovy little cafe off the main drag of Bay St is a good place to visit. We went during the day, apparently it becomes and american BBQ joint in the evening. We had a good lunch.

1 review so far 5
30.07.2016 08:15

The food was delicious. A meat eaters heaven. The beef ribs were a favorite. The food came out fast and service was ok. We will be going back again

1 review so far 5
22.01.2017 09:45

Wasn't sure what to expect but we were pleasantly surprised. Beer was super cold👍🏼 And food was great. We were too full to try deserts, maybe next time😊

2 reviews so far 5
23.01.2017 13:45

Great food! Portions were a bit small, but the quality was outstanding. I saw another tables burgers come out and they looked great. Going for that next time!

1 review so far 5
04.05.2016 16:42

Excellent. The best thing that we had there was the oh mama burger. The ribs were really good too, the beef in particular. Will return for sure.

1 review so far 5
31.08.2016 10:53

Smaller place than I expected but the food was delicious! Service was informative and fast. Meat was if a top quality and well presented. Good times

1 review so far 5
23.08.2016 18:18

Food was exceptional, the restaurant was clean and modern, staff were friendly and quick to our table but the food took a while to come out.

1 review so far 5
18.07.2016 12:31

Food and service was great 👍🏽 pork ribs and the chicken where awesome! The pie finished it off nicely! Will be going back soon ! !

1 review so far 5
05.05.2016 11:41

Food was all brilliant. Mouth-watering, fall off the bone meats. The house-made BBQ sauce is to die for. I even bought a bottle to take home.

2 reviews so far 5
25.01.2017 17:44

We had a table outside even after booking an inside table. Food was tasty. Service was good. Food centre it fast. Can not really complain

1 review so far 5
02.04.2016 07:56

Staff were On top of the service and the food was great, very rich and filling. Lots of choices in terms of food and beverages

1 review so far 4
12.05.2016 11:00

Food was generally good, BBQ chicken was a bit dry. Smaller than expected portion of Beef Ribs, not real value for money on this dish. Kids loved the Juicy Lucy Burger.

1 review so far 4
01.09.2016 12:08

Great service. Portions were reasonable, soft textures, flavours a bit on the bland side but I could imagine most people enjoying it. Turkish delight milkshake was awesome. Would come back again.

1 review so far 4
31.01.2017 14:24

Pretty good service. Great chicken quesadillas! The slow cooked meat was really good. Nice sitting outside in the sun. The Nutella thick shake was a bit sickly. Overall nice meal.

1 review so far 4
15.02.2017 15:29

Great food, good service for most part. Towards end of meal asked for drink and never received it. Other then that fantastic restaurant with great menu and food.

1 review so far 3
01.03.2016 09:44

I wasn't overly impressed with the food, the bread was rock hard and meat was quite spicy...Disappointed given the great reviews I'd read up. Staff and vibe was good however I wouldn't go back for the food.

2 reviews so far 4
14.03.2017 19:34

Nicely decorated. Food was not as good as our last visit, especially the ribs (it was quite dry and didn't fall off the bone). But friendly service!

1 review so far 4
08.08.2016 11:17

Succulent, juicy, tender, fall off the bone, pork ribs! They taste good even without any extra BBQ sauce. My graving for American Slow BBQ ribs was satisfied!

2 reviews so far 3
05.11.2016 07:08

Table was ready when we arrived. However, service staff were rather aloof and as the place became busier, service level dropped. The pork ribs were dry and not very tasty but the cheeseburger was great.

1 review so far 4
22.11.2016 08:12

The service was very good. The food was a bit dry but it arrived very quickly. Overall, it was a good experience which we enjoyed overall.

1 review so far 4
09.03.2017 07:49

great food and great service. service could have been quicker and larger range of beers could have made the experience even better. food was amazing

1 review so far 4
15.05.2016 22:15

Prompt service, a reasonable wait for our meals, beef ribs were quite good, oink balls good, hangover bf a tad dry...overall quite good, fair value

1 review so far 4
05.08.2016 08:04

great food and service - chicken wings were amazing and the beef ribs were cooked to perfection! Large portions - we ordered far too much!

1 review so far 3
03.05.2016 03:34

Food was great but the service was very slow and we did not get the opportunity to have any dessert afterwards which was very disappointing sorry to say will not be going back

1 review so far 2
29.02.2016 18:20

Portion size is so small, meat was ok but nothing to write home about, we were so excited to try the ribs but paying close to $60 for 3 ribs is abit steep, the seats were uncomfortable, tables were tiny, we won't be back unfortunately.

1 review so far 3
18.07.2016 14:45

Food was lovely. However service was very poor. The place was fully booked with only one waitress on staff who was flustered. Was there an hour before we ate.

1 review so far 3
20.06.2016 07:31

service was unfortunately slow and very unfriendly. beef ribs were good. pork ribs were okay. they did let us bring birthday cake and were accomodating about this.

1 review so far 3
11.06.2016 07:33

Lots of rules concerning the all you can eat option, which kind of took the fun out of it. Meals took to long between courses

1 review so far 4
12.07.2016 07:28

great burgers and ribs, beautiful corn bread. nice cosy atmosphere but service a little slow

1 review so far 2
23.01.2017 19:21

It wasn't an enjoyable experience in general and certainly not worth the price. The staff were disinterested in serving and the food didn't live up to other reviews.

1 review so far 2
07.12.2016 07:44

Our beef ribs and brisket were both too tough to cut and they wanted to charge us $5 a head for corkage (four people). No thanks.

1 review so far 5
12.02.2016 16:24

excellent food and very good service. will be returning !

1 review so far 5
12.12.2016 10:24

Food and service was amazing will go many times again

1 review so far 1
16.04.2016 07:57

Terrible - nothing at all as advertised. Slow service, forgotten order, gallery and Instagram photos absolutely nothing like the actual food served, complete disappointment. Good marketing to get people in the door, would be shock if they ever have return customers.

1 review so far 1
03.03.2016 07:32

The food was overly sweet, dry and did not contain any smoky flavour. This could be explained by the fact the chefs microwaved the food prior to serving. Will not come back.

1 review so far 1
29.05.2016 08:15

Took them 45 mnts for entree to come out and 40 mnts later the main.if this is normal for them in that small place,they certainly need to get more kitchen staff .

1 review so far 1
17.08.2016 14:58

Poor customer service. Too expensive for what you get. Uncomfortable heating. Crap burgers. Not worth the 50 minute travel time it took to get there.