Sydney has seen an explosion of burger joints.
Some are good, some not so good. This burger is one of the better ones.
What’s in a good hamburger, folks?
Located just 15 kilometres north of Sydney CBD, Frenchs Forest is popular with young families because of its local schools and shopping centres. But Mysaucepan and I are here to check out a relatively new American Mex cafe on a late Saturday morning.
The Old Civic, Frenchs Forest
Located within the Forestway Shopping Centre with street frontage of Forest Way, it seems to be a busy morning as the barista is flat out making one coffee after another.
A couple of Mexican style hot sauces is tempting me to order a basket of 6 buffalo wings ($8) that come with spicy BBQ sauce, blue cheese sauce and celery sticks.
I resist my temptation because I’m eyeing something else on the menu.
I can see this cafe being popular and swamped by children’s parties during weekends with its child-friendly menu.
A flat white coffee is impressive enough to bring a smile to Mysaucepan‘s face as she is particular with her morning ritual.
Mysaucepan orders fish tacos made from beer battered flathead fillets laying on a bed of shredded cabbage and two soft tortillas.
Lime juice salsa made from diced tomato, onions, guacomole offers distinctive Mexican flavours.
I am not a fan of Mexican except for Salma Hayek.
The flathead fillets are deep-fried to a crisp golden brown. When drizzled with chilli aioli and a squeeze of tangy lime juice, these two wholesome tacos are quite a handful and they remind me so much of the stunningly beautiful and sultry Mexican-American actress.
The Wise Guy
The Wise Guy is a take on the famous Five Guys burger from the US and I’ve been eyeing this bad boy on the menu. After all, how can one review an American Mex cafe without checking out their burgers?
A juicy ground beef patty is sandwiched by a soft bun with melting American Jack cheese, slices of grilled onion, tomato, pickled gherkin, ketchup, mustard and home-made aioli.
A stack of fries complement this hearty burger.
As a kid, I never used to like pickles in my hamburger but I simply adore them now. This burger bun is fluffy and the beef patty so fresh the mince is almost crumbly with charred bits of meat.
The combination of ketchup (American for tomato sauce), American sweet mustard and aioli gives this burger its tangy taste while the hot melting cheese is the clincher for me. The chips are hot and crisp whilst creamy inside.
Sydney has seen an explosion of burger joints. Some are good, some not so good. This burger is one of the better ones.
The Old Civic is child-friendly and we see young families and mothers with prams around us.
If you’re looking for brekky, get in before the breakfast menu ends at 11.30am. Eggs benedict, streaky bacon, cereal and yoghurt are among the popular items on the menu.
More importantly, the menu is well-thought out with good American and Mexican style fast food ~ New York style rueben with slow-cooked corned beef ($15.50), Chicago hot dog with sweet pickle, cheese, diced onion and hot pepper ($14.50) are just a couple that caught my eye. Prices are honest with nothing beyond $18.
Good neighbourhood cafes will always be a hit with the locals. Some are good enough to entice those living further away and this cafe is certainly one of them.
So dear readers, do you like pickles in your hamburger?
Tel: +61 2 7901 0009
Opening hours: Monday to Friday 6am – 5pm, Saturday 7am – 5pm, Sunday 8am – 4pm.