J.G. Melon

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J.G. Melon
JG Melon's 3d Av 74 St jeh.jpg
Restaurant information
Current owner(s)Jack O'Neill and the Mourges heirs/
Street address1291 Third Avenue (on East 74th Street), Upper East Side, Manhattan
CityNew York City
StateNew York
Postal/ZIP Code10021
CountryUnited States
Coordinates40°46′16″N 73°57′34″W / 40.771093°N 73.959423°W / 40.771093; -73.959423

J.G. Melon is an American restaurant established in 1972. It is located at 1291 Third Avenue (on the northeast corner of East 74th Street), on the Upper East Side of Manhattan in New York City. It is known for its hamburgers.


J.G. Melon's building dates back to the 1920s, when a tavern was built by a local brewery to dispense its own products following Prohibition.[1] The space was previously called Central Tavern.

J.G. Melon was established in 1972 by original owners Jack O'Neill and George Mourges, the "J" and "G" of J.G. Melon.[2] Mourges died in 2000.[3] The Mourges heirs are co-owners.

The restaurant's decor mostly consists of artwork depicting watermelons.[4]

O'Neill and Mourges also operated a J.G. Melon restaurant in Bridgehampton, New York in the 1970s and '80s[5] and another J.G. Melon restaurant on Amsterdam Avenue which opened in 1977 and closed in January 1993. The west-side Melon's was larger than the east-side space and had a slightly larger menu with more entree selections. Like its east-side parent, it too had a large neighborhood following and was a favorite haunt of actors and theatre patrons from the Promenade Theatre and the Second Stage Theatre.[6]

A scene with Meryl Streep and Dustin Hoffman was filmed at the restaurant for the 1979 film Kramer vs. Kramer.[2] There's also a memorable scene in Metropolitan shot at J.G. Melon.

In July 2015 another satellite location was opened by Magnolia Bakery owner Steve Abrams, brother Danny and 30-year Melon alum Shaun Young. Except for dessert, the menu is almost identical including the guarded formula and source for the iconic hamburger. The restaurant is located at 89 MacDougal Street in Greenwich Village[7]

In September 2017, a third location was opened at 480 Amsterdam Avenue on the Upper West Side.[8]

Notable frequenters[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Motz, George (2011). Hamburger America: Completely Revised and Updated Edition: A State-by-State Guide to 150 Great Burger Joints. Running Press. ISBN 0762440708.
  2. ^ a b Eater Staff (April 29, 2011). "Charm, Integrity, and Relentless Lines at JG Melon". Eater.com. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  3. ^ Johnson, Oscar C. (August 4, 2000). "OBITUARIES / Restaurateur George Mourges, 74". Newsday. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  4. ^ Solares, Nick (July 22, 2008). "J. G. Melon". Serious Eats. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  5. ^ Starkey, Joanne (July 18, 1999). "DINING OUT; Where Summer Is Spoken, With Savor". The New York Times. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  6. ^ "Boom Changing Face of Amsterdam Ave" (PDF). The New York Times. September 28, 1980. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  7. ^ https://www.zagat.com/b/new-york-city/j.g.-melon-opens-village-location-on-monday
  8. ^ Dai, Serena (September 20, 2017). "J.G. Melon's Iconic Burger Now Sizzling on the Upper West Side". Eater.com. Retrieved November 21, 2017.
  9. ^ Sulzberger, A. G. (November 2, 2009). "Bloomberg Pays a Visit to the U.S.S. New York's Crew". The New York Times. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  10. ^ Adams, Patty (July 13, 2008). "Six Seconds With: Bobby Flay". New York Post. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  11. ^ "Where's the best place to grab a burger?". Gothamist. May 23, 2008. Archived from the original on April 4, 2015. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  12. ^ MacMedan, Dan (July 14, 2009). "Dylan McDermott shares his 'Dark Blue' secrets, family life". USA Today. Retrieved August 28, 2012.

Coordinates: 40°46′16″N 73°57′33″W / 40.77105°N 73.95930°W / 40.77105; -73.95930