Paradise Road Diner

DSC01344Paradise Road Diner verdict: 8/10

Beef Burger: 8.5/10

Chicken Burger: 7/10

Sides: 8/10

 

So why Paradise Road Diner?

She says: We had some friends in town and one of them was gagging to go to the junction to ‘see if anything had changed’. So we thought why not? In the east, eat a burg. That is our motto. (I used to live in North Bondi and there was a part of me that is cross that this place has popped up since I have left and the rest of me was interested to give it a go having heard many, many good things.)

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He says: The photos of these guys on the interwebs always presented one handsome looking burger. There website states that they are going for Modern Americana food with a ‘South of the Dixie Line’ influence.

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What did you order?

  • The Cheese Burger with Bacon – $16
  • The Southern Fried Chicken Burger – $15
  • Chilli Cheese Fries – $8
  • Mac & Cheese – $8
  • Coleslaw – $5

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Tell us about the Cheese Burger?

He says: As suggested this was a beautiful looking burger that housed a patty, two types of cheese, iceberg lettuce, tomato, pickles, aioli and tomato relish. There wasn’t much to fault here but I could have done with the patty being a little rarer and with more salt.

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She saysOverall this was a pretty solid burger. The good patty, lots of sauce and delicious bacon put this squarely in the ‘would eat again with pleasure’ box. I wasn’t crazy about the bun but I also think that I have had my heart stolen by the milk bun, and i can never come back from there.

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So then, how did you find the Southern Fried Chicken Burger?

She says: Wow – what a strange burger. The salad bits were good and fresh, the avo was creamy (maybe a little over pureed for my specific tastes), and the fried chicken was doused in a very generous amount of Frank’s Hot Sauce.  I really liked the flavours in isolation but the Frank’s on a burger really threw me. I couldn’t get past it and for me it wasn’t something I would eat again. I wished we had ordered one of the other burgs to try, there were so many I liked the look of.

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He says: This wasn’t so much my thing. The chicken itself was well battered and juicy but although I’m a massive fan of Frank’s hot sauce on buffalo wings, I found here it gave too much of an overpowering vinegar hit to the entire burger. Again, as I’ve often stated, I feel avocado has absolutely no business being on a burger.

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Now, what about the sides?

She says: This is controversial and makes me feel like a traitor to my fast food leanings but man, that coleslaw was the stand out highlight of the meal. It was crispy, fresh and perfectly balanced. The chopped cornichons were fantastic and cut through the oil of the mayonnaise based dressing. The chilli fries were addictive but not necessarily the best I have tried, heavy on the meat with an almost Bolognese taste (wait is that how it is supposed to be?), it was too much for me. The mac and cheese was a winner with great cheese and salt levels (which is rare) but so rich I felt like I needed to do a few laps up and down Curlewis Street (BONDI REFERENCE) to feel human again.

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He says: Chilli Cheese fries are always one of those things I like in theory but am continually reassessing my thoughts for as I find the chilli in the most part heavy and overpowering. The ones here did little to change my mind although I’m more than happy to bear some of the blame there. The Mac & Cheese was as good as any I’ve had of late and the coleslaw (not something we’d usually order as a side) which had the genius addition of cornichons was almost my highlight of the meal.

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|| 296 Campbell Parade, North Bondi, NSW, 2026 || Website ||


HOURS:

Open 7 days a week

7am – 10pm Saturday – Sunday

11:30am – 10:00pm Monday – Tuesday

Paradise Road Diner Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Jack’s Newtown

IMG_6927Jacks verdict: 9/10

 

Beef Burger: 9/10

Other Beef Burger: 9/10

Vegetarian Burger: 6/10

Sides: 8/10

 

So why Jacks?

She says:  I have been obsessed with this place ever since it was a kebab shop that closed because it was vandalised. He used to claim that the kebab shop was superior to Istanbul down the road but I have stood by my boy Istanbul because I am 100% sure it saved me from alcohol poisoning in my early 20s a million times over. He and I stalked this place every day it was under renovation and when we were popped our heads in during the renos and the lady inside informed us that it would be a ‘fast food’ restaurant we had our fingers and toes crossed for burgers. And we were pumped when the neon sign was revealed and our dreams came true.

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He says: This place is located literally around the corner from our house and after hearing that it was ‘fast food’ moving into the space we’ve been peering in for months trying to decipher what would open up. When the doors opened and there was talk of them being Sydney’s answer to Shake Shack we were there for their first Saturday of service.

What did you order?

  • Cheeseburger with Onion  – $11
  • Bacon Cheeseburger – $12
  • Vegetarian Burger – $11
  • Crinkle Cut Fries – $5
  • Pistachio Frozen Custard Shake – $?

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Tell us about the Cheeseburger with Onion?

He says: Immediately hit with what is up there with the most flavoursome patty in the city – perfect salt to meat ratio on this one and it disintegrated into my mouth. My bun was a bit on the doughy side and I could have done with double the amount of sauce provided. The onions gave a great crunch. All in all a very welcome addition to the burgeoning Sydney burger scene.

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She saysI loved this. The bun is awesome, almost the sweetest milk bun I have had, but it worked. The bottom was soggy but it actually didn’t bother me. The meat was cooked well and the lettuce had a good crunch. I was dubious about the fried onions but they were a really good addition – added a bit more crunch and another flavour level. Great burger – highly recommend.

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So then, how did you find Bacon Cheeseburger?

She says: Very much like the cheeseburger with onion but without onion and with bacon. It is hard to pick favourites between these burgers as they are both very similar but I think the juicy, flavourful thick cut bacon takes this one over the line for me. This will sit in the hall of great burgers of my life. Love it and have been trying to drop it into conversations casually to entice people to come back to Jack’s with me.

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He says: Great quality bacon that formed an effective team with that aforementioned patty. My bun on this one was a little better but could have done with being a little softer. Again not enough sauce for my liking.

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Wow – you have three burgers?? Well, what are your thoughts on the Vegetarian Burger?

She says: It was after eating this burger that the insightful He and I realized that we have no place reviewing vegetarian burgers. The answer to us trying a vego burg will always be ‘It was good, but it could have done with some meat’. This burger had the same bun, sauce and salad elements as the other two angels but the patty was a rice and bean patty that fell apart as you ate it. It was to me, a very strange choice.

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He says: Hard to judge as I wouldn’t normally order this but the patty (seemed like it was made of rice and black beans) had a strange texture and taste that I didn’t think went all that well with the rest of the burger. I’d come back here for the cheeseburgers but in the off chance I was craving a vego burger I’d go around the corner for Raven’s Eye’s tempeh number.

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Now, what about the sides?

She says: Crinkle cut fries make normal fires look like idiots. They are far superior. These were golden and seasoned perfectly. In the war of the fries I would join the crinkle cut army and I would die for their cause (unless there was a waffle fry contingent, in which case things could get complicated). Oh and that Pistachio Frozen Custard Shake – get outta town, it was awesome. Just a slight pistachio flavor, it wasn’t too sweet but it was good and thick.

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He says: High points for the frozen custard shake having a great consistency and not overdoing it on the sweetness front. The crinkle cut fries were simple but delicious (and must be dunked in a side of the burger sauce!).

|| 170 Missenden Road, Newtown, NSW, 2042 || https://instagram.com/jacksnewtown/ ||

HOURS: Open seven days, 12pm – 12pm

 

 

Jack's Newtown Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Hub House Diner

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The Hub House Diner verdict: 6.5/10

 

Beef Burger: 6/10

Chicken burger: 6/10

Sides: 6.5/10

 

So why The Hub House Diner? 

She says: We stumbled on this one a while ago on Instagram but lost it among the many lists we have of places to go. It is a little oasis in Dulwich Hill and sits surrounded by some pretty depressing main road action. The staff are lovely and there are HEAPS of them so you get some pretty speedy service. I really loved the vibe here and some of the other, non-burger food definitely looked like it was worth a go.

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He says:  Mouthwatering shots of burgers and chicken on the blogosphere from this place had me amped to hit up Dulwich Hill.

What did you order?

  • Double Beef Cheeseburger – $19
  • Crispy Bird Burger – $19
  • Pimp My Fries – $11
  • Popcorn Chicken – $14
  • Honeycomb biscuit smoothie- $8.50

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Tell us about the Double Beef Cheeseburger?

He says:  When this arrived I was excited as it looked like a champ. T’was a touch disappointing though. It tasted exactly like a McDonalds cheeseburger (that’s not a diss) with a more complex patty. There was way too much ketchup though and it overpowered everything in it’s midst.

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She says: This burger really has potential but unfortunately I can’t honestly say I would order it again. I hate giving bad reviews but the double beef patties were drowned in tomato sauce – which meant that tomato sauce was all I could taste. I couldn’t really distinguish the cheese, pickles or even the meat – just sauce. And then there was the texture …the whole burger, meat included, had a really strange texture – kind of mushy. Not for me. (And to be honest, at $19 it was pretty expensive for what it was.)

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So then, how did you find the Crispy Bird Burger?

He says: Again looked like a legend but fell just a little short. Perfectly competent burger but nothing jumped out to make it memorable. The breading had split from the chicken which didn’t help things.

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She says: This is one of those rare burgers that he and I disagree on – I didn’t think it actually was ‘perfectly competent’. Again, I don’t think I can honestly say I would order this again. The bun had the same problem as the beef burger – it was just super mushy (and not in the good, fingerprint saving squishiness of Mary’s or Publife). And the coleslaw had a strange bitter taste. Again, this one was not at all to my tastes.

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And what about the sides? 

 

She says: The popcorn chicken surprised me – I was just thinking KFC but it  it actually comes with popcorn, in a jar. i really liked the presentation. The chicken itself was fine but the popcorn it comes served on, drenched in oil and salt, is really, really, good. It was my stand-out for this meal. The smoothie was okay – it wasn’t as thick as I would have liked but it wasn’t the worst. We also ordered ‘Pimped’ fries – which were good for ordinary fries – but the pimping quality (they were covered with cheese and truffle oil) didn’t really hit the spot – the truffle smelled great but wasn’t as strong as I would have liked.

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He says: The smoothie was an immediate hit for a hung over Sunday – frothy and sweet with honeycomb crumbs surrounded by a chocolate syrup that improved when whisked around. The pimped fries were suitably rich and the fries themselves were cooked to perfection. Like the rest of the meal the popcorn chicken was a ‘solid’ contribution that lacked a little flavour (could have been mystery meat by taste but when cut in half it was clear it was chunks of chicken breast).

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|| 410-412 New Canterbury Road, Dulwich Hill. NSW 2203 || (02) 95181887 || Website ||  eat@thehubhousediner.com.au ||

Opening Hours: 

Monday : Closed.

Tuesday – Friday : Breakfast (from 7am), Lunch & Dinner.

Saturday – Sunday : Breakfast (from 7:30am), Lunch & Dinner (8pm close Sunday)
The Hub House Diner on Urbanspoon

Meat District Co.

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Meat District Co. Verdict: 5/10

 

Beef Burger: 5/10

Chicken Burger: 5/10

Sides: 7/10

 

Why the Meat District Co.?

He says: There seemed to be a heavy push on social media regarding Meat District with the chief selling point being there expanding empire from Pasadena. I was skeptical as it was located smack bang in the middle of a tourist trap mecca (Darling Harbour) but the photos I’d seen online made their burgers look like the they were the shizzle!

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She says: I’ve made my feelings about Darling Harbour clear before [link to meat and wine co] so I wasn’t super excited to go here, but when we turned up on a Saturday night, it was pumping. The restaurant itself has really a good vibe and heaps of people seemed to be there in big groups getting ready to head out. If that is your M.O. it looks like a good option around those parts.

What did you order?

  • Cheese Burger – $12
  • Chicken Burger – $14
  • Onion Rings – $7.50
  • Truffle Fries – $7.50

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Tell us about the Cheese Burger?

He says: If you’re going to have an open kitchen it might be a good idea to conceal the fact that your patty mince isn’t ground and minced on site (which became evident by the unopened industrial sized plastic bags holding the mince in the refrigerator). This burger was mediocre city. The bun was far too doughy and dwarfed the size of the patty, the patty itself was overcooked and had too many notes of cheap sausage, and there was nowhere near enough sauce. Disappointing.

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She says: This burger was a beauty queen but lacked substance to back up its fairly awesome first impression (and to add to that, note that it was not a traditional Cheeseburger). The patty was really, really salty and had a weird Ikea meatball type taste. Also – as far as I am concerned, the jury is out on rocket on burgers. The pickle was strange too with an almost musty flavour. The cheese was great though and the sauce was working pretty hard to pull the burger from the depths of meh.

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So then, how did you find the Chicken Burger?

She says: This burger featured fried crumbed chicken breast which we were pumped about after having not such a great time with grilled chicken burgers of late. It was a fairly standard, schnitzel type piece of chicken – which would be good with some tomato sauce and cheese, parmigiana style at your local, washed down with a Carlton Draught while you scratch in your Kino numbers with a pretty much blunt pencil that is far too small. The coleslaw and horseradish mayo weren’t super tasty and the bun was a bit too doughy. Again – this burger looked fantastic but failed to deliver.

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He says: Same issue here with the bun as the prior effort. The chicken itself was dry and again there was nowhere near enough sauce and slaw so the whole thing was rendered rather bland. Also could have done with the addition of cheese.

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And what about the sides?

She says: The fries were the best part of this visit – they were great and crunchy, golden with a light dusting of cheese. He thinks He could taste the truffle but I couldn’t, which is strange because I am usually a gun when it comes to smelling, tasting, seeking out and devouring truffled-anything. The onion rings weren’t amazing (but they are more His thing than they are mine, so maybe listen to him on them and not me).

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He says: The sides were the saving grace and highlight of the meal. The chips were cooked to perfection (crunchy on the outside with soft pillows of potato goodness ready to pour out of the center) and the onion rings were bang on as well. The truffled aioli accompanying them both raised the bar again


|| King Street Wharf 1 Lime St Sydney || Website ||

 

Open 7 days a week and 365 days a year – Monday – Sunday : 11am till ‘late’

Meat District Co. on Urbanspoon

Cheeky Burger

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Cheeky Burger verdict: 8 /10

Beef Burger: 9/10

Sloppy Joe: 2/10

Sides: 8/10

 

So, why Cheeky Burger?

She says: This one is another tribute to the brilliance of Instagram for exposing new and exciting places to eat. I saw the first few Instagram posts by these guys but neither of us could work out they it was. By chance, we passed in on a Paddington stroll. It looks great from the outside and there is a killer back garden which would be great for a burger and drinks smashing session in the sun.

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He says: This was an Instagram find by my gorgeous Burger blog partner. Then, whilst engaged in an unrelated stroll down Oxford Street, we stumbled across it, noticed it open, and made immediate plans to return later that same evening for a dinner feast!

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What did you order?

  • Cheeky Cheeseburger – $9.99
  • Sloppy Joe – $12.99
  • Fries – $2.99 (with burger purchase)
  • Buffalo Wings – $12.99 (or $1 per wing on Wednesdays)
  • Mac n’ Cheese – $13.99
  • Peanut Butter and Jam Shake with Bourbon – ($7.99 for shake and extra $6.99 for bourbon)

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Tell us about the Cheeky Cheeseburger?

He says: This cheeseburger is more than just a welcome addition to the Sydney burger fraternity – it could be en route to becoming an icon. A simple USA styled cheeseburger where everything is well executed. Melt in your mouth patty which is cooked just right, soft shiny mildly sweet bun, puddles of melted jack cheese and a delicious mustard styled sauce that serves to push everything else in the party into it’s most flattening light. For my mind this is better than the Mary’s plain cheeseburger and that’s saying a whole lot.

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She says: I am not usually a fan of the cheeseburger – I forget that it really is nothing more than cheese and meat, and usually wish for some lettuce (at least) to cut through the fat. But this cheeseburger was really close to perfect. The cheese was super melty and delicious and the pickle was perfectly tangy. The bread and the patty both achieved the right texture and together this burger was a song!

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So then, how did you find the Sloppy Joe?

She says:  Like previous choices such as the soft shell crab burger disaster have made in the past, this was not our finest moment. He isn’t a huge pork burger fan and this was really the only other choice. The waitress was sure to explain that essentially this was bolognaise on bread but we were stuck to our guns and forged on. She was right- it was just bolognaise on bread – but really, really sweet bolognaise. Two words: Never. Again.

He says: I have to be honest I’m not that well versed in Sloppy Joes and after this initial experience I’m fine to keep it that way. What we got was a burger bun filled with bolognaise mince. The mince itself was so cloyingly sweet that I could hardly manage more than a mouthful without recoiling into some kind of Willy Wonkaesque food coma. This was not my idea of enjoyable by any means.

So, what about the sides? Tell us!!

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She says:  GAWD the sides! Glorious (for the most part). The fries were standard – Maccas’ style skinny but crunchy with lots of salt. The Mac n’ Cheese was one of the best we have had – sneaky bits of bacon ramp up the saltiness without being overpowering and the crunchy breadcrumbs on top are prefect with the not-too-soft macaroni. The star of the show was the wings – these wings are very, very good. Sticky, spicy and tangy, they are again some of the best I have had and feature that signature Franks Hot Sauce taste. The Peanut Butter and Jam Shake with Bourbon however let the team down. Our experience with The Nighthawk Diner  shows that there is potential greatness in a peanut butter and jam milkshake but alas, that was not achieved in this instance.

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He says: Like the aforementioned burgers the sides continued on polemic vibe. The buffalo wings had a light crunchy batter, on point traditional marinade and delightful blue cheese sauce which saw them up there as being as good as any I’ve had in some time. The Mac n’ Cheese was not only a behemoth in size but is easily the best one we’ve reviewed for this site and one I’m sure I’ll dream about for some time to come (crunchy top? check, generous servings of bacon strips? check, different types of cheeses? check creamy gooey cheesy fun all round? check). The Peanut butter and jam thick shake with bourbon on the other hand will be more likely to produce fever dreams as it was a bit of a disaster. The ratio of Peanut butter to jam was completely out of whack and the whole thing ended up tasting like a pint of bourbon with some sour milk plopped into it. I don’t think I’m being harsh by saying it was near undrinkable. Could just be opening week jitters though and that cheeseburger was such a delight that anything can be delivered at this point.

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|| 312 Oxford Street, Paddington 2021 || (02) 93317436|| Website ||

 

Hours:

MON TO SUN: 11am – 11pm

 

Cheekyburger on Urbanspoon

Mary’s (CBD)

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Mary’s Verdict: 9.5 /10

Beef Burger: 9.5/10

Chicken Burger: 9.5/10

Veg Burger: 6/10

Sides: 7/10

 

Why the Mary’s CBD?

She says:  I feel a certain amount of totally misplaced ownership over Mary’s. I found them soon after they opened, when I first moved back to my spiritual homeland of Newtown and their burgers have nursed me through many a dire hangover. Giving the CBD store a go was a must.  (Note for you before you get to the cross section pictures: Although we engaged in a fairly lengthy conversation about which knife we to carry with us to town and went through potential explanations we would give the police if they happened to search us and find the knife, in the end forgot to bring it and so, in a quick thinking move of utter brilliance we nibbled the burgers to their middles to give you cross section shots. They are far from pretty, but then Mary’s burgers don’t need to be pretty and they don’t care what you think!)

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He says: Although no review is present on the site (due mainly to lighting not being conducive to photography and the generally dire hungover state when in it’s presence) it’s safe to say that I’ve demolished a Newtown Mary’s burger more often and with greater vigour than any other burger in Sydney. The service may often be so cold it’s reptilian and the burgers not much to look at when they arrive on the table but fuck me it’s hard to deny these aren’t the most delicious burgers this city has on offer. Upon hearing they’d opened a    new takeaway only venture in Sydney’s CBD (with a fried chicken burger!) i’d felt an invisible string yanking me towards since opening night.

What did you order?

  • Mary’s Burger with trashcan bacon – $10
  • Chicken burger – $12
  • Veg Burger – $10
  • Fries – $3
  • Smokey Maple Syrup Thickshake – $6

 

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Tell us about the Mary’s burger ?

He says:  Everything on this burger is on point. It truly is the perfect union. The meat disintegrates as opposed to melts in your mouth, the cheese wraps itself around it like the perfect partner, the sweet soft bun keeps it all honest and the sauce is one fit for the gods. The patty today perhaps a little overcooked but I will forgive for the army of miraculous burgers that had preceded at Newtown. Final meal on earth contender right here.

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She says:  This beautiful classic was, as always, top notch. Somehow I only got one piece of tomato which wasn’t ideal as you need that tomato to make this burger what it is. It cuts through the grease just a bit. This burger is heaven and joins a part of a whole suite of Mary’s burgers which have been consumed and enjoyed over the last year – the score given reflects a conglomerate experience.

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So then, how did you find the chicken burger?

She says: We were both pretty pumped to try the chicken burger – a new menu item is always something to get excited about. Mary’s fried chicken is awesome, it’s succulent and crunchy to boot putting it on the deliciously sweet burger buns at Mary’s seems like something no-brainer (He actually may have mentioned this as a great potential menu items many burgers ago). This burger, with a sprig of lettuce and  just a bit of tomato was the delicious counterpart to its beef sister. In a word – Fantastic.

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He says: Pretty much the fried chicken from the Newtown joint inserted into a burger format. Devilishly delicious and rockets straight to the top of any chicken burger within a 1000km radius.

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Shall we talk about the Veg burger then?

He says: We have a lot of vego friends who’ve banged on about this being the best veggie burger in town because it doesn’t focus on being healthy (apparently quite the trait in the vegetarian burger scene) instead bucking the trend and dishing up an old school dirty burger. I was open minded, am down with mushrooms and thought upon glancing at it that I was in for a treat. Really didn’t deliver though as for me the volume of mushrooms (two of them and both massive) over powered the other ingredients and it just seemed as if everything on the burger was initially designed for beef and anything else was an afterthought. In saying that I can see why people might wax lyrical about it and admit I’m clearly not the target market for this little guy.

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She says: Firstly: I hate mushrooms – I try not to and there are some mushies which I am beginning to like but all in all, I am a firm ‘no’ to mushrooms. As He mentions though we wanted to try this as a tribute to our lippy vego friends. Conceptually I can see how if you liked mushrooms and were sick of healthy burgers, this could be enjoyable – but to me it was like hell.

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And what about the sides? 

She says: The fries were consistent with the Newtown ones – don’t expect anything fancy, they are your stock standard Maccas style French fries. The thickshake was surprisingly smokey but it had a weird texture, it was almost too thin, as if there was lots of ice but it didn’t have that creamy texture of a good thickshake. The ANZAC cookie sitting on top was pretty great though. And to be honest, I missed the mash and gravy, which you MUST eat if you go to Newtown Mary’s.

 

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He says: The shake was surprisingly a let down as it was more a 3rd rate soft serve in a cup then a $6 drink. Fries were good but PLEASE PUT THE FRIED CHICKEN AND MAS H N’ GRAVY ON THE MENU HERE AS WELL! PLEASE!!!!


Mary’s ||  154 Castlereagh Street,  Sydney CBD, 2000

Opening Hours:

MON TO SUN: 10am -10pm

 

Mary's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato