The patty is well-charred, succulent and beefy.
And the sesame bun passes my pillowy test too.
Back in late 2010 when the burger craze in Sydney was taking off, he launched Charlie & Co. Posh wagyu patties in a gourmet burger were pushed to office suits at the up-market food court on level 5 at Westfield Sydney for eighteen bucks a pop.
Then in early 2011, his flagship fine-diner Becasse was to take up residence at level 6, boasting a $4 million fit-out that included crystal chandeliers and ostrich leather tables. This venture was to spectacularly collapse in July 2012, leaving a trail of debt and destruction in its wake.
Four years on, rent and staff costs have most probably increased for most restaurants but the price of that same burger at Charlie & Co. has gone backwards instead. It is now a more humble fourteen dollars. Such is the extent of intense competition where we are presented with a myriad of food choices all over our fair city.
And while Sydney diners have learnt that it needn’t cost the earth to find a good meal, so too has New Zealand-born Justin North, who is now executive chef at Centennial Hotel dishing out “produce-driven comfort food”.
Perhaps Neil Perry‘s recent Burger Project might have taken a little cue from North who also started a burger concept that been opened for more than a year now.
So on a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon, I am here with Mysaucepan and the Monk to check out North’s ‘burger shed’ that promises to deliver just the very two ingredients many diners are now looking for – taste and value.
The Burger Shed, Mosman
The menu is short and succinct. Beef, lamb, chicken, fish and portobello mushroom for burger seekers and fish tacos and chicken tortilla for the renegades.
The focus on quality ingredients means there are 5 house rules ~ Local & daily to ensure freshness, Natural grass-fed beef, Maximum flavour from Angus & full-blood wagyu, Made to order and the Happier the cow, the happier the customer.
It’s only a twenty-five seater but this is what I like about small restaurants because the focus is on the food and not much else.
The “shed” concept is given a chic and modern touch because this is up-market Mosman after all. Exposed brick and white board cladding are complemented by a ladder mounted onto the ceiling where tin lamps hang.
Ten dollars for a wagyu beef burger in Mosman? This is the proof.
Coleslaw is old school style with crunchy purple cabbage, carrot, cucumber and green apple in mayo dressing.
There are a few boutique beers and I opt for the citrusy notes and bitter finish of a Little Creatures Pale Ale.
Crisp and golden brown, the fries soak up earthy truffle oil and pungent parmesan aromas.
Mysaucepan‘s Federation burger is a Riverina lamb patty with pickled beetroot, iceberg lettuce, cumin and a slather of mint yoghurt in a sesame bun.
She finds the patty a little dry and so do I. For me, lamb flavours are not quite the same as classic beefy ones in a burger.
My ‘Classic’ Shed Burger comes with a grass-fed Angus and full-blood Wagyu patty topped with BBQ onions, tomato relish, pickles, aioli and melting cheese.
The patty is well-charred, succulent and beefy. And the sesame bun passes my pillowy test too.
BBQ corn is buttered and sprinkled with salt and chilli flakes. It’s lighter than those snowed with parmesan or cheddar but good enough for a side.
Costing about $18 per head for food among the three of us, The Burger Shed definitely passes the taste and value test.
Competitively priced as it is in up-market Mosman, I think this venture is destined see better fortunes that North’s previous gigs at up-market level 6 Westfield Sydney.
So dear readers, which is your favourite hamburger joint in Sydney and why?
The Burger Shed
914 Military road
Mosman, New South Wales
Tel: +61 2 8021 9262
Opening hours: Sunday to Wednesday 11.30am – 8pm, Thursday to Saturday 11.30am – 9pm