Cheeseburger Gothic

I have a new favourite

Posted November 1, 2015 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

I mean it this time. I stumbled across this Teeling Irish Whiskey at a tasting in the bottle shop at Gasworks, with which Mr Monsteryuppy will be all too familiar.

I don't normally get suckered into these things, but I was led astray by my good lady wife who encouraged me to have just a wee dram.

Oh. My. Fucking. God.

This shit is insane. I tried the 20 year old, which is aged in six different types of barrel. It compared very favourably with the 25yo Highland Park I'm currently sipping my way through. Hell, it more than compared. It kicked arse. I bought the eighty dollar bottle, but would have paid more than double for it. Probably shouldn't tell the bottle shop that though.

12 Responses to ‘I have a new favourite’

AuntyLou mumbles...

Posted November 1, 2015
Eight dollars?

John Birmingham ducks in to say...

Posted November 1, 2015
I mistyped. Now corrected.

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AuntyLou asserts...

Posted November 1, 2015
Thought that might be the case. Or it was a very small bottle! Really only interested in the true price 'cause the hubby has a birthday coming up. Might have to investigate. Thanks for the edit.

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WotanPaperClips is gonna tell you...

Posted November 1, 2015
Should try the Talisker 10yr old or the Laphroaig 10yr old, top notch stuff if you enjoy smoky single malts

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Murphy_of_Missouri would have you know...

Posted November 2, 2015
Seems more like a winter time libation if you ask me.

I wonder if it can be had here Stateside?

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted November 2, 2015
aged in six different types of barrel.

Any idea what these barrels were made of and/or where they came from?

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted November 2, 2015
Bunch of red wines and ports as best I recall.

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Therbs reckons...

Posted November 2, 2015

Hmmm. Just ran out of Oban and the Lagavulin is on its last legs. I think I have a new ambition. Here's one description of this tipple (from Dan Murphys):<font face="Times New Roman">
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"To add a unique depth of character and
flavour, Teeling Single Malt consists of aged malt whiskey up to 23 years old
that has been matured in five different wine casks including Sherry, Port,
Madeira, White Burgundy and Cabernet Sauvignon. This combination of cask
maturation techniques has never been done before in Irish whiskey and creates a
truly innovative Irish whiskey bursting with personality. Like all the Teeling
Whiskeys, it's bottled at 46% with no chill filtration, allowing for all the
natural flavours of the Whiskey to be retained."

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Barnesm swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted November 2, 2015
Well that's Christmas sorted

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Peter Bradley reckons...

Posted November 9, 2015
Got a bottle at East End Cellars here in Adelaide on Friday. Yep this stuff is the business, not cheap but lordy lordy does it deliver in spades.

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The Lazy Dog Roll

Posted August 8, 2015 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

My irregular commute, a morning run across the city just ahead of peak hour, takes me within striking distance of The Brown Dog Cafe in the back streets of the Gabba.

It was a place which intriuged me for a long time. An old, anonymous corner lot, out of the way, and yet the footpath outside always seemed crowded. Eventually I checked it out, as is my want, and discovered one of the local secrets of the southside.

The Lazy Dog Roll.

Like the cafe from which it draws its name, the roll is simple. A white bun, fresh sliced ham, cheese, a fried egg and BBQ – or possibly HP – sauce. If I had to nominate a breakfast to eat every day for the rest of my life, I think this would be it. I never tire of this bloody thing, and find myself thinking about as I'm racing ahead of the peak hour wave to drop Thomas to school.

There are heaps of other breakfast options at the Dog, some of them remarkable value, but I can never get past this roll and a flat white in a large mug. I'd post a picture, but I've never known one to last long enough on the plate to capture an image.

10 Responses to ‘The Lazy Dog Roll’

balri is gonna tell you...

Posted August 8, 2015
Love the Brown Dog. Used to work across the road and go there every day

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Shep mumbles...

Posted August 8, 2015
The emergence of the brekky role in Brisbane is truly something to be thankful for.
Mine's from Valentino's Cafe just off Samford Rd in Mitchelton

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ChrisB ducks in to say...

Posted August 9, 2015
Dang, that could be any corner here in EP/Juarez...Marty Robbins would be right at home...

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Anthony is gonna tell you...

Posted August 9, 2015
Of course down here in civilisation we are spoiled for choices. I think my favourite would be the roti omelette at Tom Phat on Sydney Road Bunswick.
After a night of excess their Goan Scrambled Eggs with a virgin/bloody mary accompaniment is an excellent pick-me-up.
They also do a very good coffee although that should go without saying. I believe there are certain laws about coffee in Brunswick, just as wearing black is generally mandatory, if you don't produce good coffee the caffeine inspectors from our local council (The Peoples Republic of Moreland) pay you a visit and nasty things happen to your family.

Lulu ducks in to say...

Posted August 10, 2015
"nasty things happen to your family"
You're forced to move to a zone 2 suburb.

dweeze has opinions thus...

Posted August 10, 2015
I've been through that nasty - it sucked. I found little to keep me in the cultural wasteland of Zone 2 and got the hell out. Now, it's a 10 minute drive to the nearest decent coffee but at least the views are better. Oh, and no Bruns-a-wick hipsterwanker fashion tragics to spoil said view with their ironic smirkiness.

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Sudragon reckons...

Posted August 9, 2015
makes you wonder if there's a Darwin eatery doing an early morning Crocodile roll...

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted August 10, 2015
For reasons unknown to me I suspect I was intentionally not told about this place, or what sounds like a specifically Brisbane style brekky.

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Lauren puts forth...

Posted August 10, 2015
Swap the ham for bacon and I'm in love.

Rhino ducks in to say...

Posted August 12, 2015
Lauren is a GENIUS!

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Strauss Cafe review

Posted August 1, 2015 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

STRAUSS.

189 Elizabeth St, Brisbane QLD

open 6.30am - 3pm | Monday - Friday 07 3236 5232.

It's a trap for young players, breakfast in the city. Especially this city in winter. Hobart, Melbourne, even Sydney, they know it's going to be unpleasantly cold sometime in the year. Brisbane, not so much. Oh, it gets cold enough. But nobody likes to acknowledge that, especially not in the way we live. Because of this there are some lovely places to have breakfast in the city, but you can't go there in winter because all of the seating is outside, often in the middle of a wind tunnel.

Strauss does not seem well located. Tucked away at the end of a long, lonely alleyway, which seems more of an afterthought than a design tweak in a city which is desperately trying to reclaim its backstreets, Strauss has plenty of outdoor seating, but you can bustle on past that and grab yourself a warm and cosy spot inside. Indoors, the cafe is all exposed brick, brushed steel, and hardwood. It's very Manhattan loft space. The clientele are city workers, of course, but they seem to be the sort who assiduously seek after the secrets of the city that most punters, happy with an egg McMuffin and a Styrofoam cup of Ronald McDonald's finest Java, never find.

The coffee at Strauss is of a kind that coffee nerds will seek out, travelling an extra three or four blocks if necessary. They will make all the classics, naturally, but you are doing yourself a disservice if you don't allow them to make you a filtered brew.

Whoa! Back off. Put down those pitchforks right now.

By filtered coffee I don't mean the astringent liquid tar beloved of America's roadside diners. I mean fresh, individually made glasses of superfine premium Arabica. The only place I drink black coffee is at Strauss, and I drink it every time I go there. Served in large, delicate stemless wine glasses (well fuck off, that's what they look like) the filter coffees are a revelation. I don't know whether it's the glass, but the flavour profile is so gently complex it always reminds me of drinking wine. And who doesn't want to drink hot wine on a cold morning?

That's not enough of course. We must eat too, and the thing I like about Strauss is the minimal, stripped back menu. Nothing complicated, but everything made from fresh, top shelf ingredients. It was crowded when I had breakfast yesterday, and I took a seat at the bench running the length of the open kitchen area, allowing me to watch the young woman preparing the meals work her magic. The crowds kept coming, the meal dockets rolled in, and she never stopped moving; sawing through great thick logs of freshly baked sourdough, juggling dozens of perfectly poached eggs, sprinkling fresh raspberries on steaming hot bowls of porridge. It was inspiring and not a little intimidating to watch her work.

I had a simple ham-n-eggs combo, that arrived as two pink slices of prosciutto on thick slabs of buttery toast topped by a couple of golden googs. I rarely get past this menu item, but if I did it would probably be to sample the sweet treats which look devastating.

I meant to take Professor Boylan to breakfast here while he was out, but I failed him in that regard. I let the Prof down, I let myself down, I let Australia down.

10 Responses to ‘Strauss Cafe review’

w from brisbane asserts...

Posted August 1, 2015
Brisbane people and our befuddlement about the cold. I have heard southerners say that they have never been colder than in Brisbane. Because of our traditional single skin housing with lots of windows, if it is 7°C outside, it is probably only about 10°C inside, and we don't have heaters and the traditional Brisbane bloke only owned one jumper and he wasn't sure where it was. Bit changed now, partly because so many southerners now live here, for the weather. I used to think a classic Brisbane scene was a 7°C morning and 3 blokes standing around outside in short sleeve shirts complaining that it was cold.

NBlob mutters...

Posted August 1, 2015
Allegedly in the 70's it was worthy of Special Brach notification if one installed insulation in one's home. It indicated either homosexuality or Green sensitivities, neither appropriate in QLD.

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tqft would have you know...

Posted August 1, 2015
I seemed to have missed that place.
Maybe next week I might seek it out

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GhostSwirv asserts...

Posted August 2, 2015

Strauss sounds grouse JB - coffee in a wine glass, what's not to love ... as for Professor Boylan, what other places of interest did you accidentally not take him to?

John Birmingham reckons...

Posted August 2, 2015
We pretty much kept all the good stuff from him.

Rhino asserts...

Posted August 2, 2015
As it should be until I get there.

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GhostSwirv swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 2, 2015

One is reminded of the gay banter between the top ECHELON burgers as like that of those Top Gear ruffians - perhaps you lot should tour the wild lands throwing barbs and bestowing burger-wisdom?

Of course for legal reasons Professor X Boylan should be a party.

Rhino asserts...

Posted August 3, 2015
Who are the Echelon Burgers?

GhostSwirv is gonna tell you...

Posted August 10, 2015

Is this a test Lord Rhino?

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tqft mumbles...

Posted August 9, 2015
Tried it last Wednesday morning.
Busy at breakfast time (before 9am) but that was not unexpected.
Getting first coffee took a while, but they took my order fairly fast.
Had poached eggs on toast (sourdough) with avocado.
Very very yummy.
2nd coffee as a takeaway on the way out.
Very good.

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This is why we will never defeat America at barbecue…

Posted July 25, 2015 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

Because Harvard is on the case and they've invented a cheap, foolproof smoker. And apparently paying a couple of thousand dollars for your cheap, foolproof smoker designed by Harvard engineering grads is a good deal.

The New York Times has the story, but I got the hero pars right here:

Mr. Parker came up with the idea for the smoker project at a cooking contest in a Memphis parking lot before a college football game. He was stunned by the smokers he saw. “I mean, just piles of metal junk,” is how he described them. “Trash cans with smokestacks. It was offensive to an engineer.”

When the semester began, only two of the 16 students in the class had smoked meat before, two were vegetarians and five were from abroad and did not know what American-style barbecue was.

They began by analyzing smokers on the market, focusing on Big Green Egg, a popular one with a ceramic cooking chamber. They evaluated the extra-large version, which costs $1,200. “We went through the patent of the Big Green Egg and just completely dissected it,” Mr. Parker said. “Where’s the opportunity here? Where’s the weakness here?”

They built computer models of Big Green Egg, of the brisket and, eventually, of their own smoker. They ran hundreds of computer simulations, and they learned that maintaining a precise, steady cooking temperature is crucial to evenly breaking down the meat’s collagen, tenderizing it. Several students spent their spring break taking a crash course in ceramics at the Harvard Ceramic Studio to build two prototypes of the smoker.

I don't know of anybody in Australia who goes to the sorts of lengths for a barbecue fix. I did know a bloke in Canberra used to marinate his prawns for an hour or so before burning them on the grill, and there's always some idiot who insists on upending his beer all over the meat while it's on the flame. But I don't know of anybody who's commissioned research and development like this.

I just don't know that we have the patience. This idea that you stand by the barbecue, or the smoker I guess, and lovingly tend the meat for 12 to 14 hours seems… excessive. Don't get me wrong, I accept that the final product is undeniably superior, but by the time I've got four or five beers under my belt I really just want a burned snag, a slice of white bread and another four or five beers.

33 Responses to ‘This is why we will never defeat America at barbecue…’

damian has opinions thus...

Posted July 25, 2015
Sounds like a reasonable alternative to the slow-cooker for inferior cuts of meat. You wouldn't waste a nice big hairy melt-in-the-mouth steak with such treatment, though.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted July 25, 2015
Sure I would. You can't tell me what to do.

damian reckons...

Posted July 26, 2015
And I'd never try!
I suppose if you'd do that, you might order a steak well done. And you might mechanically reclaim the meat from a variety of seafood for fish-sticks...

damian mumbles...

Posted July 26, 2015
I love America. I want it to be even betterer!

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan mutters...

Posted July 26, 2015
I expected you to say something like that.
You're a communist, aren't you? Some kind of hipster commie type, huh?

damian would have you know...

Posted July 27, 2015
Well, no, I'm not a hipster at all.

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Brother PorkChop puts forth...

Posted July 25, 2015
It's not 12-14 hours of tending meat, it's 12-14 hours of dedicated approved steady beer drinking time whilst you occasionally top up the chips, wood or whatever your fuel is. Meanwhile you enjoy some quality beers, ales and lagers whilst being provided snacks from the kitchen. I don't have 12+ hour sessions but the outdoor oven allows for maybe 6 especially if the spit is in use as well.

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insomniac is gonna tell you...

Posted July 25, 2015
Alternatively you need to culture a strong friendship with someone who does have patience, lives locally, cooks often, and invites you over just for the price of bringing over a few delicious beers.

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Coriolisdave swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 25, 2015
Is there a link to that piece? I can't see it in the post.
That said, 6 hours lines up perfectly with test cricket - tending the tongs during the drinks breaks, sinking brews... It's completely compatible with the Aussie lifestyle

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Murphy_of_Missouri asserts...

Posted July 25, 2015
Barbecue is an art, not a science.

A computer model of the brisket? How can one take such seriously?

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Therbs asserts...

Posted July 25, 2015
Follow 2FBS over at Tweeterville and you'll find a man who spends a whole day doing such things. The pictures he posts of his efforts make you drool over your Twitter timeline.

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tqft mutters...

Posted July 25, 2015
I saw this a while back.
A bit tempted, I do like my bbqed meat. But 12 hours is excessive effort.
Good class project

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w from brisbane has opinions thus...

Posted July 25, 2015
Of course, the point of the science is not that you have 12 hours of effort. It is that you can put it on and come back 12 hours later and it is perfect.

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NBlob ducks in to say...

Posted July 25, 2015
The unique combining of French Arcadian, Spanish, African, Caribbean & 1st Nations traditions, rendered down in a competitive context and basted in family traditions has resulted in the finest, stickiest, sweetest, tenderest spicey meat products I've experienced. My gluttony reaches new lows when faced with a pit and a man who knows how to use it. I'm not proud of what I've done & I suspect my artery walls may never be the same, but God Bless American BBQ. One question though what's with the corn bread? It just soaks up valuable meat capacity.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 25, 2015
To understand corn bread you must remember that the BBQ you love is the result of a mash up of the traditions of extremely poor French Arcadian, Spanish, African, Caribbean & 1st Nations peoples. They took what was left after wealthier people had their fill and transformed it something wonderful. Collard greens when cooked right are just delicious. The Collard is a weed that was foraged. Ribs were trash meat. And corn was used to feed animals and consequently, was a cheap carbohydrate. American peasant food.

But let me tell you something, mate, a well-crafted corn bread with cheddar cheese and jalapeno peppers in the batter is a beautiful thing. And yes, it is like a sponge, but it soaks up some fairly tasty juice and sauces.

damian would have you know...

Posted July 26, 2015
Anything involving a complex sauce that itself is part of the treatment - will require some kind of starch on the side to soak up the juices. Suspect it's just a language thing that would steer you away.

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DrYobbo is gonna tell you...

Posted July 25, 2015
I have a recollection of this being a Blunty at some point. My views are unchanged: there is nowt better than a snarler grilled to crunchiness, but still juicy on the insides. I totally get the Seppo BBQ thing, it's more like slow cooking than anything Strayans would associate with barbequeing.

damian would have you know...

Posted July 26, 2015
Agreed - I think Americans do what we call BBQ, but to them it's just grilling. The American BBQ is a totally different thing, really its own cuisine so there's a language issue to hop over.
For us, it's all about the fresh ingredients interfered with minimally.
Though of course an Aussie BBQ sausage should be burnt evenly all the way around.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 26, 2015
I know I'm channeling Hughesy a bit, but this story offended me. Just a bit. As Murph points out, BBQ is an art, not a science. As the Blob points out, American BBQ represents culture and tradition. And a big part of that culture and those traditions is the mythic idea that, with a bit of tinkering (that can and often does go on for years, through generations) anybody - no matter how low their station in life - can use just about anything to come up with a method for making the best fucking BBQ you ever tasted.

It is an interesting story, but ultimately it is about a bunch of rich kids using expensive technologies to improve upon something they enjoy (easting tasty food) but don't understand. Their product, though possibly perfect, is the equivalent of a microwave oven. High tech and surely good for some things, but lacking soul, lacking passion, and that is why what comes out of it will never beat what you can find strolling along the converted oil drum monstrosities lined up in a parking lot during a BBQ cook off in Nashville, Dallas, Kansas City, Phoenix - hell, even LA.

Finally, if you really want to understand the traditions and magic of American pit BBQ, read or listen (the audio book rocks) Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation by Michael Pollan. What he describes will haunt your dreams. You will never be the same.

NBlob puts forth...

Posted July 26, 2015
Thank you for your most excellent contribution to my birthday list. To my unutterable shame I still haven't finished Mz Razor & Mr Keen's A Short History of Stupid, which I got for Christmas.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted July 26, 2015
Seriously, the Pollan book will change the way you look at the universe - especially his up close and personal exploration of old fashioned open pit pork BBQ. The kind that results in buildings burning down as an accepted occasional natural outcome.

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Rhino mutters...

Posted July 26, 2015
Love these culture gap things. Boylan hit the nail on the head. Soulless cooking. Their meat may be perfect from a chemistry perspective but it will never have the heart and soul of a full rack from Fat Matts Rib Shack. The unhygienic surroundings just make the ribs or brisquit that much tastier.
Also, as an FYI, smoking is generally set it and forget it. Better if you don't open the smoker at all. Get up early, start the meat, come back a couple of times to add some hickory. Mmmmmmmmmmm. And don't pre-sauce your BBQ. Height of ignorance and amateurism. Wait the last couple of minutes and finish on a grill if you want some caramelization.
What you do (and 99% of Americans as well) is "grilling". Apply meat to flame for a few minutes and remove. If you turn the meat more than once you are an amateur and I will curse you in public.

The cool thing in Atlanta are the rib joints that have Chinese as well. A wrestler that went by the Name Abdullah the Butcher is married to a woman of Asian extraction and his eponymous Abdullah The Butcher's House of Ribs is one such uber cool joint.

damian reckons...

Posted July 26, 2015
Trust me in this Rhino, there's nothing soulless (or hygienic) about the average grill plate. Anything that is cleaned by superheating, if at all, while suffering rancid pork fat, possum pee and melaleuca resin in random sprays is always an object of character. Or at least parts.
I totally approve of cooking methods that enable the use of the entire cow. It's what makes big hairy steaks possible, and the longer the treatment the betterer. I also approve of "set and forget" (taking a moment to be thankful for the advent of the self-timed electric slow cooker), and self-smoking is something I really want to get into. We have an old brick barbie in the (currently structurally unsound, as most battens and some beams have rotted and become food for the rather glorious orange trumpet flower vine, but that's another story) that I always had a vague plan to convert into a wood-fired pizza oven. I see multiple uses here. And of course there's a potential re-use for the normal hooded gas barbie, possum wee and all. So little time, too many things to try...

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 26, 2015
Murph, the Senator, Ydog, TTim and my less then humble self. I can tell you for a fact that the moment any of us read ""Fat Matts Rib Shack" we said "Fuck, yeah," and meant it to the core of our seppo being.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan mumbles...

Posted July 26, 2015
"Abdullah The Butcher's House of Ribs"

Got. To.Get.Me.Some.

yankeedog asserts...

Posted July 27, 2015
Just got back from Old Southern BBQ up in the depths of Northern Wisconsin, started by 'Famous Dave' Anderson. All chopped up and prepared right in front of you-and when they run out of meat for the night, you're just out of luck.

Two (slightly greasy) thumbs up! And he's going to start a second place. Having created one chain of BBQ places, I wouldn't be surprised if he gets a second one going, and becomes the Barbeque Czar.
Fat Matt's Rib Shack? I can smell that place in all it's smoky meat goodness right now...even though I've never been there.


Therbs swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 27, 2015

I remember Abdullah the Butcher. One of the vicious bad guys back before WWF became WWE and swallowed all the other wrestling competition. Any man that big would have to know what he wants in bbq'd meats.

Anything called Fat Matt's Rib Shack would just have to be full of meaty win.

*burp*

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Murphy_of_Missouri is gonna tell you...

Posted July 26, 2015
I do the ribs on the gas grill. I improvise a pan of wood chips, mesquite is what I prefer. The rub is a combination of Arthur Bryant's special formulation and some brown sugar. Get the heat around 300 or so and walk away. Maybe check on it ever so often to make sure the grill didn't run away.

Apparently I have a knack for it. At some point I should get a true smoker and see how that goes.

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Rhino ducks in to say...

Posted July 27, 2015
Just had some awesome ribs at Chef Larry's. Dry rub and then in the hot smoker for 2 hours. Then, wrapped in foil and back in medium heat smoker for 3 more hours. Out and rested and sauced.
Meat melted off the bone.

Murphy_of_Missouri mumbles...

Posted July 27, 2015
I bore witness via the Book of Face. Those not there addicted like the rest of us (Thanks, John!) missed out on the foodporn taking place at Casa de Rhino.

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TeamAmerica mutters...

Posted July 28, 2015
I've always assumed barbecue was an Aussie/Yank thing, but it appears to have growing popularity in Britain:
http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/american-style-bbq-heats-up-in-u-k/

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan mumbles...

Posted July 28, 2015
Cultural imperialism, buddy. First our movies. Then our degenerate music. Now our BBQ. We shall conquer the world by making them all just like us.

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5 Boroughs refutes David Chang's whiny burger complaints

Posted July 18, 2015 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

?5 Boroughs?
405 Logan Road, Greenslopes
Open 11AM-9.45pm



David Chang is full of shit. He’s right about beetroot, but still full of shit. The New York chef, owner of the Momofuku chain, and publisher of The Lucky Peach magazine, has been talking smack about our burgers, describing them as the worst in the world.
Now you can, without a doubt, have a truly fucking terrible hamburger anywhere in Australia. As bad as you can get anywhere in the world. But that doesn’t make our burgers the worst in the world.
"You know who fucked up burgers more than anyone else in the world?” Chang asked in The Lucky Peach. "Australians. Australia has no idea what a burger is. They put a fried egg on their burger. They put canned beetroot on it, like a wedge of it. I am not joking you. This is how they eat their burger,"
No, Mister Chang, you ignorant fucking bigot. No we do not.
Some disabled Australians, sufferers of brain injuries or incurable genetic disorders, do indeed put beetroot on their burgers. But who are you to judge them, Peachboy? And as for a fried egg, we’ll have you know that there are few condiments that can match a perfectly fried egg for the way it lifts and ennobles to the merest beef pattie, whether wagyu or not. The runny yolk, when cooked to the zenith of perfection, bursts open at the first bite and spreads it’s golden goodness throughout the layers of a properly constructed burger, tying together the crisp, cold lettuce leaf, the juice tomato slice, whatever the hell kind of cheese you want, and the lightly toasted bun.
I could cite as evidence of antipodean burger excellence any number of first class chefs who, having mastered the art of fine dining, have entered the hotly contested field of hamburglary. The pony-tailed assassin, Mister Neil Perry (have you ever seen him in the same room as Steven Seagal? Well? Have you?!?) is but the latest entrant to the crowded high end of the market.
Perhaps David Chang simply needs to sample the wares of local but New York inspired burger serve dry, Stone’s Corner’s 5 Boroughs. American cheese is available for the unwary and foolish, but it is not the only option. The burgers are fine examples of the craft, available in traditional Chang-approved style - a simple ensemble of bun, burger and cheese – but you could get that at McDonalds. Were I David Chang, god help me I would range further across the menu, perhaps sampling the bacon and cheese, or its hotter cousin, laced with fiery jalpeno and sriracha mayo.
Or I would, if I ever made it past 5B’s generous Cuban Sandwich, two thick, heavy wedges of toasted panini, barely containing tectonic slabs of leg ham, slow cooked pork, melted cheese, dill pickles and American mustard. 800+ calories of Castro approved awesomeness that will leave no room for the excellent fries or sticky chicken wings.
5B is a gnarly place to venture to in the winter months, with all of the seating exposed to the elements, but then not everyone is a whiny, entitled man-child like Chef Chang. If you like your protein and carbs done simply, but with a little New York style, and no beetroot, you could do a lot worse than check this place out.
It's fucking way cheaper than Momofuku.

59 Responses to ‘5 Boroughs refutes David Chang's whiny burger complaints’

NBlob mumbles...

Posted July 18, 2015
As with all things one must first agree to metrics of success. First for me is integrity; can one finish the burger, to the very last bite, without anything falling out. After that comes; taste, texture, satiety and aesthetics. The mob I work for have a donga (demountable building) at [redacted] the only cooking facility we have is a gas grill. Thus we have conducted exhaustive research into perfecting the art and science of burger creation. If one takes care to; lightly toast the Turkish bun, leave lettuce leaves intact, blot tomatoes with kitchen paper, Americanise the bacon (extra dessicated) and put the egg on last, so the top bun absorbs excess yolk, one can pile on a ludicrous amount of meat and retain the all important integrity.

John Birmingham reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Your pamphlet, sir. Where do I subscribe?

damian would have you know...

Posted July 18, 2015
Can't talk, eating

Bunyip has opinions thus...

Posted July 18, 2015
NB, do you deliver?

NBlob reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Oh man that's harsh

tygertim mutters...

Posted July 20, 2015
Paul, did you introduce JB to Nations Giant Burgers on his last visit?

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan would have you know...

Posted July 20, 2015
No. But if he ever returns I shall introduce him to the In and Out Double Double.

insomniac asserts...

Posted July 20, 2015
The In and Out Double Double reminds me of a time while working in NZ. For those of you who know the Wellington region I sometimes had to travel from Lower Hutt to Wellington for training, and often 3 or 4 people shared a taxi there. A woman came to ask me if I wished to share a taxi, to which I agreed. She then said, "In and out?", to which I also agreed. It was only after she left that my workmates pointed out that I had just agreed to have sex with the woman, who would have been among the more unattractive specimens in the office.

tygertim is gonna tell you...

Posted July 23, 2015
Try Nations Giant Burgers in Vacaville. Truly a Fifties style burger it's great. I grew up near the original Natons, and that's all they serve, decent burgers, great fries, and really good pies and shakes.... the do serve breakfast though, large portions. Nothing like it when you've been out late, and have a munchies attack.... In n Out burgers are good, but am not wild about their fries....

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insomniac puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2015
The best local burger here is a FatBoy. It is layer upon layer of meat pattie, cheese and bacon, with the appropriate token amount of lettuce and tomato. No egg and in any case I'd ask for it to be removed, and no beetroot but I don't mind a slice or two ... it's a wedge that is wrong. You can't get the whole thing in your mouth because it is too tall. Delicious

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Gutz swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 18, 2015
I seem to recall some other fudez discussion on a sat morning not long gone by. *tips porridge into bin and reaches for supplies for heart attack burger while mumbling something about "resistance is futile".

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w from brisbane asserts...

Posted July 18, 2015
I read David Chang's remarks. Basically, he just likes a cheeseburger.

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damian puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2015
A "hamburger with the lot" from a reputable independent operator anywhere in Oz is really better than anything from a chain and especially an American chain. By reputable, we're talking about a fish and chip shop run as a family business (avoid anything where a person's name is part of the business name, and anything where the business name includes the word "diner", unless it's obviously an ironic retro reference or there really are 50s style booths) for preference by first and/or second generation migrants. Grey-greys or schoolies with a barbecue stand by the entrance to Bunnings are right out. Some casual operators with the Right Idea might be worthwhile (as per NBob's specs above).
A hamburger with the lot should include not just beetroot but pineapple also (though there should be no objection to a "hold the pineapple" order). The beetroot should be sliced, the pineapple ring should itself be grilled. It should contain fried egg, bacon and cheese (but not the strange orange stuff the Americans call cheese). There should be fried onion, shredded lettuce and sliced, fresh tomato.
I disapprove of the default barbecue sauce and will always order the above with no sauce. Maybe some mayo on the lettuce. I don't mind if bits of lettuce fall out, but as per NBob's spec, nothing else should. Otherwise it's impossible to eat in the car.
The bun should be soft and there should be an option for wholemeal, but leaving that aside there should be sesame seeds on the top. Turkish is fine, but in that case the inner face should spend some time on the grill. The only absolute rule about the bread, is that is must not be sweetened. Bread made with a small amount of sugar to get the yeast properly excited and hungry before adding it to the flour is acceptable, but sugary bread is a perversion of the natural order. It's probably the real reason that having 5 McDonalds per block in Australian CBDs still leaves a market for the aforementioned independent operators - there are things they Just Don't Get. And I guess it's also the reason McDonalds Australia keep trying new weird things, and advertising them ferociously. Ha... they think adding beetroot makes it Australian? Forgot the bacon, egg and effing cheese ya nong...

Tim would have you know...

Posted July 18, 2015
Hear hear! In my town we have an institution known as the Green Corner Kitchen. And while the original immigrant owner has long passed, and his children have sold off the business, and the store is no longer on a corner, the burgers are still fat, the beetroot is still red, and the runny egg still find it's way to the chin and the corners of your mouth.Superb.

NBlob would have you know...

Posted July 18, 2015
BLASPHEMER! Cast out the iconoclast, the heretic. Damned be his eyes that places fruit on the sacred burger or pizza.

damian reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Look, the ham and pineapple Hawaiian is such a standard there's just no legs to this stand of yours, my friend. And the complex flavours in a pineapple ring caramelised on the grill plate is not, I repeat not to be dismissed lightly.
Me, given a choice it's a capricciosa (with anchovy) (no pineapple) from Kookaburra Cafe, but that's an old Brisbane thing I guess.
Seriously - the Kookaburra Cafe guy wants to retire. He's looking for a buyer for the business, goodwill and all and given it's 40 years and running that goodwill must be worth a mint (so whatever he asks for it will be a bargain). But failing that he'll just sell the building (there are For Sale signs on it now). Like I said he wants to retire.
It'd be such an awful pity to see that one slip away. I remember the "feed the multitudes" moment during the 4ZZZ occupation when a half dozen of those huge Kookaburra party pizzas just turned up. The fate of the Story Bridge Bomb Shelter Bar broke a larger portion of my heart than I would usually like to admit, but the end of Kookaburra would do ... well probably the same. You hear someone's turning the Broadway into... well, whatever it is it is something that is not a pub? It's a cold glass-and-concrete world we're leaving for posterity.

NBlob would have you know...

Posted July 19, 2015
Romans 16-8 "by their smooth and flattering speech they deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting."

damian reckons...

Posted July 19, 2015
“The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
An evil soul producing holy witness
Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,
A goodly apple rotten at the heart.
O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!”

NBlob has opinions thus...

Posted July 19, 2015
Have you been talking to Greybeard?

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2015
I am forced to admit that the hamburger I ate in Melbourne was amazingly mediocre. But it was the only hamburger I've ever eaten in Oz.

As for fired eggs on to of hamburgers: who is this asshat to criticize such a delicious combination? I'm a fucking hamburger loving American and I fucking love fried eggs on burgers. So fuck him.

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tqft reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Went to Bro Burger at Browns Plains last week.
Had the Beached As burger. Yes it is run by Kiwis.
Sweet Potato wedges were awesome as was the fish burger.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted July 18, 2015
What the fuck is a fish burger? It can't be a burger with fish as the protein. That makes no sense. It can't be a burger: it's a fish sandwich.

insomniac ducks in to say...

Posted July 18, 2015
Perhaps it would be a fish sandwich if you were a girl. A proper fish burger has a deep fried battered piece of fish, which is much more manly to eat.

tqft swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 18, 2015
It had 2 pieces of battered fish

damian reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Likewise the chicken schnitzel burger is sporadically popular in parts. Maybe more in some parts than others. I remember it especially in Canberra, for some reason.
You get a large chicken schnitzel with coleslaw and mayo in a bun. It works surprisingly well, and it's a massive amount of food, especially with chips (which purists will insert into the bun with the rest).

w from brisbane puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2015
I was highly uncertain about the prospect of a fish taco, but then found it was one of the nicest things I've ever eaten.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan would have you know...

Posted July 19, 2015
Battered or not, it is still a fish sandwich.

damian puts forth...

Posted July 19, 2015
By the same mechanism that makes inevitable that any restaurant calling itself "seafood lovers" will be nicknamed "fish fuckers", a seafood sandwich in a bun will be called a fishburger. Some businesses might aim for the proposterous, the fillet (or rather fee-lay) o' fish (meaning "son of fish" being the case in point.

w from brisbane ducks in to say...

Posted July 19, 2015
PNB!!! As you bloody well know, the difference between a sandwich and a burger is defined not by its filling, but by its bread conveyance. A sandwich is when filling is placed between two flat slices of bread. A burger is filling placed in a sliced bun. You sir, are a shameless and mischievous provocateur!

NBlob asserts...

Posted July 19, 2015
Mz W, it beats the living hell out of golf.

NBlob is gonna tell you...

Posted July 20, 2015
+1 for a chicken schnitzel burger.

damian has opinions thus...

Posted July 20, 2015
The mass and majesty of this world, all
That carries weight and always weighs the same
Lay in the hands of others; they were small
And could not hope for help and no help came:
What their foes like to do was done, their shame
Was all the worst could wish; they lost their pride
And died as men before their bodies died.

John Birmingham mutters...

Posted July 20, 2015
Wow, that's lifted straight from the Sanction 5 instruction book.

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SZF mumbles...

Posted July 18, 2015
I've never seen David Chang and Dino posting at the same time. The levels of crazed douchery are disturbingly familiar...

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan would have you know...

Posted July 18, 2015
Makes perverse sense.

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Josh has opinions thus...

Posted July 18, 2015
I'll take beetroot over bloody pineapple any day.

NBlob asserts...

Posted July 18, 2015
And Josh leaps moves into pole position in the credibility 5000.

Josh reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Being a South Australian who moved to Brissy. I quickly learnt to order no pineapple & tommy sauce on my burger.

damian mumbles...

Posted July 18, 2015
Certainly prefer the tommy to the bbq sauce. But I've found that since getting that means I'm going off menu anyway, just asking for no sauce suits me betterer. Lets the complex interplay of the core ingredients shine, or something.
Still not sure how I might adjust to the "same, but different" things that go on in pubs in Adelaide, but it's so many years since I've there it hardly matters. Tassie might be a better bet for me, while it's 13 years ago I distinctly remember wandering into a pub in Hobart that was older than Brisbane and there was a dog sitting at the bar.

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HAVOCK21 mumbles...

Posted July 18, 2015
what fkn muppet thinks a burger withour PINEAPPLE and BEETROOT is COMPLETE FFSAKES. talk about a fkn gastronomical FKN philistine or what!

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Burdekinst reckons...

Posted July 18, 2015
Beetroot is essential. Just back from Europe trip and the best burger in fifty five years of extensive sampling. Made by whom? Expat kiwis in Kraków. Moa burger with the lot. Pineapple:grilled. Beetroot. Hallelujah for this sandwich of sanity in a country where ninety percent of the food is white.

damian is gonna tell you...

Posted July 18, 2015
Wow, hallelujah indeed. Those wily Polish Kiwis...

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jennicki ducks in to say...

Posted July 18, 2015
I tried an Aussie-style burger with beetroot. It scarred me.

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Rhino would have you know...

Posted July 19, 2015
Ate a beautiful bison burger today. Medium rare. Bacon. Blue cheese. A little goat cheese for creaminess. And a beautiful fried egg. On a white bun.
No garden. No pansy aioli. No whole grains. No bullshit stuff. Just glorious protein.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan puts forth...

Posted July 20, 2015
God damn that sounds good. Love me a bison burger.

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Guru Bob ducks in to say...

Posted July 19, 2015
Good to see that someone has refuted these terrible assertions about the good old Aussie burger. It has saddened me to see the proliferation of extremely average American style overpriced burger joints down here in sunny Melbourne. Often it is hard to distinguish between a chain store burger and the supposed gourmet version (except for price that is)...

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Puma is gonna tell you...

Posted July 20, 2015

The pineapple part baffles me.

I went through a phase where every burger or steak I made was slathered in caramelized onions, mushrooms, or blue cheese. Sometimes all 3 and a big cabernet to wash it down. Then I was like...this is silly...I can't even taste the beef anymore. Now I just like sharp cheddar on my burger and my steaks plain. Has to have a really good char though.



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tygertim asserts...

Posted July 20, 2015
My niece, Nicola, used to go out with a gal from Sydney. I was invited to a barbeque, and Shelley the Sheila was the chef... I never realized how creative an Aussie cook could be. She barbeques prawns the size of lobster tails, which were served on toasted buns, mayo, honey mustard, Vidalia onion slice, lettuce, tomato, pineapple ring, red pepper, slathered in teriyaki sauce, and an awesome white cheddar. It left my mouth stunned by the awesomeness of its magnificence..... ill just take Shelly's word that was a burger, call me a heretic if you will. It came wit something called "chips" sprinkled with malt vinegar... is an Aussie "thing" like French fries and mayo is for Canadians?

NBlob is gonna tell you...

Posted July 20, 2015
@TT. I'm blessed & cursed with access to better seafood than %99. Chilled Crab / Prawn, fresh peeled, especially sand crab (like your blue crab) on fresh white bread is a favourite delicacy. Usually served with sandy feet, beer in cans & summer both in quantity.

damian would have you know...

Posted July 20, 2015
Salt and vinegar chips are indeed a thing. It dates back to getting the fish and chips wrapped in yesterday's news. I imagine it's not just Australian, but more generally anglo-irish. You even get packet chips ("chrisps" to the brits, but we don't use a special word) with salt and vinegar flavour.

tygertim asserts...

Posted July 23, 2015
@NBob... man, sounds heavenly....Crab in a burger? Surf n Turf using the beer burger method a la the BBQ Pit Boys.... host me forgotten an experimental ban...

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FormerlyKnownAsSimon mumbles...

Posted July 20, 2015
Nothing worse than a hypocrite who attaches fence sitting comments at the end of his assertions (1). I'm assuming it was a tongue in cheek article? Cause those were fighting words! Almost at the same level as the great potato scallop/cake war of '15Chang, mate, you are first against the wall when the revolution comes!(2)(1) except for that Dave Chang guy he's great(2) of course the wall is where everyone lines up for free hamburgers

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Therbs mutters...

Posted July 20, 2015
An American complaining about burgers in another country. Erm, who came up with McCrap and Hungry Jack/CrapKing? Their product is not hamburger its shite meat patties. Plastic cheese? Yes, step forward once again Murka. Crap mayonnaise? Well, looky here, good 'ol Unky Sam once again. Sugar laden bland tomato sauce? Hey, USA, here's your gold medal. Put that in a sugary steroided bread roll and what have you got? A burger in the USA.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan asserts...

Posted July 20, 2015
Only the mentally slow eat that crap, Therbs. They are endlessly fascinated by the simple fact that McCrap, Hungry Jack and Crapking never rots. No kidding. Put one down. It will get cold. It may dry out over time. But no bacteria will grow within that stuff. It is the source of endless wonder among the American Illiterati, whereas I cannot eat that stuff for the very same reason.

Except for the In and Out Double Double jungle style.

NBlob mumbles...

Posted July 20, 2015
Protein style?

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted July 21, 2015
Too messy. But good. I'll admit that much.

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tygertim has opinions thus...

Posted July 23, 2015
@Therbs, Man , you gotta try a burger from Nations Giant Burgers, or The Red Onion, or heck, Johnny Rockets (while listening to Jan and Dean not the jukebox..... just not the same at all. The terrible three at like tv dinners, made to cover until you can get the REAL thing...

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Respond to '5 Boroughs refutes David Chang's whiny burger complaints'

Beer can burgers

Posted June 13, 2015 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

I dips me lid to Guru Bob for this link to the BBQ Pit Boys beer can burger instructional video. I especially like it because whether you live in northern climes or south, it is a recipe for all.

12 Responses to ‘Beer can burgers’

Michael Neuss is gonna tell you...

Posted June 13, 2015
Of course i had to click on that after breakfast this morning, which, coincidentally was a beef burger....but now i am ashamed....want beer can burgers and to hell with those pesky blood pumping and delivery bits of my body!

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KreepyKrawly puts forth...

Posted June 13, 2015

Heart attack on a plate, But whatta way to go!!! ß-Þ

El Scurvo reckons...

Posted June 19, 2015
having had a heart attack last saturday I can assure you it is a shit way to go and no bacon on earth tastes as good as being alive.

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dweeze asserts...

Posted June 13, 2015
"Now, I gots me an excuse to drink beer."
Any excuse will do...

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted June 13, 2015
100% American - the good, the bad and the ugly.

The underlying message is "fuck elegance; I'm hungry."

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Murphy would have you know...

Posted June 14, 2015
Hmm.

Does it work with bottles? :)

FormerlyKnownAsSimon ducks in to say...

Posted June 15, 2015
Bloody hipster. : )
Next you'll be asking if the resultant stain can be washed out of your buttoned up designer flannie.
I take it all back. Hipsters would never ruin their beards with this.

Murphy puts forth...

Posted June 16, 2015
But Simon, I don't have a beard.
Not anymore.

(sheds a single, manly tear)

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nick is gonna tell you...

Posted June 14, 2015
god bless america....

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Brother PorkChop mutters...

Posted June 15, 2015
If only I had seen this yesterday. We are doing a Murican themed team lunch today, 2 of us have just watched this and started drooling. The logistics would be difficult in this office but you can work wonders with a sandwich press if you put your mind to it...

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Rhino mumbles...

Posted June 16, 2015
Merica. Fuck yeah!

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Brother PorkChop mutters...

Posted June 16, 2015
Yep, not much work done after the team lunch. 3 main food groups consumed - sugar, salt and fat. Was awesome.

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Respond to 'Beer can burgers'