Hi all, this month’s eats turned out to be a mish mash of cuisines, with a heavy emphasis on burgers though. I don’t know what kickstarted my obsession with what’s simply a piece of ground meat between bread. Wholesome? Check. Cheap but high in quality? Check. Delicious enough that I can eat what’s virtually the same thing over and over again? Cheeeeeeeck. Also, have a squiz at my monthly favourites too.
Listen: Culver City – Yon Yonson If you’re keeping up to date with music of late, then you’ve probably heard of Flume or SBTRKT, well you have to give Yon Yonson some attention. I am addicted to this track, from the opening riff right to the very last bar. Disclaimer: bandmember Nathan is a colleague of mine but I really like their music.
Read: Guernica by Dave Boling It’s been a few months since I read this novel so the details are a little hazy so I’ll include this description from Goodreads which does a better job than I can manage right now: ‘The bombing of Guernica was a devastating experiment in total warfare by the German Luftwaffe.’ In summary, it’s about romance, family, the Spanish Civil War, tragedy and overall is a decent read.
Watch: Lars and the Real Girl Awkward Lars (Ryan Gosling) orders a sex doll online and treats her like a real-life girlfriend to help cope with his emotional problems. Sounds bloody weird right? Turns out the unusual premise doesn’t detract from the heartwarming performances. Gosling’s portrayal of a man who experiences pain from human contact is very endearing and I genuinely felt how hurt he was. Unexpectedly terrific movie.
The Burger Project by Neil Perry, Sydney CBD
Seems like a lot of fine dining chefs are opening up burger joints nowadays in Sydney and there are no shortage of burgers to taste. One that I had been especially excited to try was Neil Perry’s ‘The Burger Project’. Located conveniently in World Square, it has been open since late September 2014 but it wasn’t until the end of March that I made a takeaway order for some burgers.
I am sold on Neil Perry’s burgers. Medium-cooked juicy beef patty, fresh lettuce between two white fluffy toasted buns… and the price! It’s very reasonable for the great quality. The Aussie Burger and Cheese & Bacon have the exact same base fillings of grass fed beef, cheese, onion, pickles, tomato, lettuce and secret sauce. To distinguish between the two, the Aussie has added beetroot while the Cheese & Bacon includes some crispy fried bacon. I’ll definitely be having these burgers again with some valrhona chocolate sundae on the side for dessert. And the thrice-cooked chips were totally awesome – crunchy, salty exterior, hot and fluffy inside.
I’ve read numerous online reviews regarding the taste of these burgers and comparing them to macca’s which is on point. They do taste very alike, but you’re getting a great deal more attention to detail with the produce at The Burger Project, it’s so much nicer looking than a Big Mac, which are usually put together in a slapdash manner. I don’t mind that they taste like Macca’s, I enjoy Mcdonald’s burgers very much actually, what that says about my taste, make of it what you will. But there’s times when you just feel a tad snobby and want a real burger. It all really boils down to what your preferences are.
Waterfront Grill, Darling Harbour
Situated right on the harbour, restaurants span side by side in this area. The day is really gloomy and it’s heading into winter so outdoor heaters have been pulled out of storage. I never venture here to eat because it comes across as touristy but everything needs to be given a go at least once even if it isn’t my cup of tea.
Disclaimer: I scored a free meal for my birthday as it is a promotion of theirs. To get the free meal though you have to register your birthday at least a month before it’s due. Once your email is confirmed, you’ll have a free birthday meal voucher to use 7 days before and after your special day. Sign up here
As for the burger it looks like it should be made of dreams, I’m afraid I cannot recommend it. The angus patty was dry, overcooked and lacked flavour so I slathered it in the sickly sweet bbq sauce that was provided. But even then I couldn’t finish it, the patty really killed it for me. The other components were fine though, the toasted brioche bun was buttery and sweet, the bacon crisp and the chips were thick cut, pillowy soft on the inside with a crunchy exterior. I feel as if chips are something hard to get wrong really. I have to admit, the main drawcard of me coming here was the free meal. If I hadn’t received the complimentary food, I’m not sure that I would choose to eat here of my own will. Not because of the one bad meal I had, but because in an over saturated food scene such as the one in Sydney there are more appealing options. Eating out can get costly, so I tend to be more selective about it.
Aqua S, Sydney CBD
It was a Friday night, the queue stretched long and far, I’d been waiting for 15 minutes but I wasn’t deterred. I was going to get me some attractive ice cream dammit. Aqua S are easily the most photogenic ice cream in all of Sydney.
You have the choice of having your soft serve in a plastic cup (boo!) or a charcoal black waffle cone (wooo!) I went for the sexier looking option, the cone of course. It’s genius, black goes with everything so that’s why it pairs so well visually with the ever changing colours and flavours. Every fortnight, check into their Facebook page to see what new flavours there will be . I feel as if I have nothing new to add because I’ve seen so many reviews and instagram photos of Aqua S soft serve. So here’s what I had:
I opted to have the two ice cream flavours with all the toppings. Once acquired, it was like holding a little bejewelled mountain surrounded by a billowing ocean of fairy floss, popcorn rocks and a marshmallow cloud top.
The sea salt ice cream is a curious shade of light blue, it’s very creamy, tasting sweet and briny. The watermelon was like a watermelon Chupa Chup, like someone’s taken a fresh watermelon and tossed in a heap of sugar essentially. I’ll give you a head’s up not that you’ll need it: this ice cream melted rather quickly, but the fairy floss managed to capture all the drippage so nothing was wasted.
I personally feel like the toppings are just accessories, designed to help entice people into the store which it does fantastically. I’d say get all the toppings you want, instagram the heck out of it and just have the ice cream itself. But hey, if you want to add some pizazz with popping candy or whatever I’m not going to stop you.
Five Points Burgers, North Sydney
Managed to fit in one more burger by another ex-fine dining chef turned burger restauranteur. This time, it’s Tomislav Martinic, a former employee of Heston Blumethal’s The Fat Duck.
I had a colleague bring back a burger for me as I couldn’t leave my desk. because it was during the lunch rush, it took him over half an hour to travel to, queue up and return. So, I’d be strategic about this and just have an early or late lunch.
If there’s an option to have bacon included, it’s going into my burger, that’s why I had to have The Bronx. Packed full of artery-clogging ingredients: double slices of fluorescent yellow cheese, a heavenly construction of condiments, Brasserie Bread milk bun and a juicy-as beef patty. This was such a messy burger, all the saucy ingredients leaked into the takeaway box but that’s alright because it tasted so good, I give this burger two big thumbs up. Everything was to my liking apart from the streaky piece of bacon that was horribly burnt and that was my only gripe.
And that’s it for this month, see you next time!