Seriously, is there anything better than a feast of American BBQ? I honestly can’t think of many things more enjoyable than a platter of smoky meats, served with heaping bowls of mac and cheese, collard greens, and cornbread. Coupled with the fact that decent BBQ isn’t all that common in Australia, and how I won’t let myself indulge in it very often, it is a real treat when I do get to have it. Despite having been in Sydney for over a year now, I’ve only had BBQ once, at Bovine and Swine. This travesty was finally remedied with a long overdue trip to Surly’s – a heavily American-themed sports bar in Surry Hills.
I’ve never been a big fan of donuts (though I do like them – I’m not crazy), but the hype around Daniel’s Donuts has been so big over the last year that I had to go and check it out. Everyone from mum’s co-workers to Chris’ co-workers has been banging on about how they’re the best donuts they’ve ever had, and combined with the fact that my sister was dying to visit, and that it’s actually near-ish to home, prompted a drive down to Springvale one afternoon while I was in Melbourne.
When I first started putting out the feelers out and asking around for things to do in New Zealand, a name that came up immediately and repeatedly was Fergburger. But that was no surprise. Over the years, I’ve heard the name dropped by everyone from family to friends to co-workers, and just generally bandied about on the internet. And they all say the same thing – that Fergburger does one of the best, if not the best burgers ever.
I didn’t realise how much I had gotten used to the DINK (that’s Dual-Income-No-Kids) life until I quit work to go back to study at the beginning of the year. All of a sudden, I no longer had the funds to go out for a meal at my favourite wine bar whenever I felt like it, and I have to constantly ask myself if I really need a 3rd bubble tea this week. To be sure, there are plenty of delicious and affordable eats floating around Sydney, but I do find myself getting sick of the same-same routine of casual Asian/Middle-Eastern meals after a while, and crave something a little more refined.
As unbelievable as it may seem, I have finished the first year of medical school! It was simultaneously the longest and shortest year ever; whilst it felt like classes would never end, the assessments just came rushing up one after another. Almost before I even realised, I was stumbling out of my final exams, absolutely drained after the 7-hour ordeal, and ready for some sustenance and a drink. Refusing to walk any more than absolutely necessary (I still can’t believe that Sydney is such a shocker to get around – I miss Melbourne’s trams heartily), I decided to make camp at Since I Left You, aka SILY, a rather hipster sort of bar hidden away between 3 heritage-listed storehouses in the city centre.
Any excuse to eat burgers is a good one in my books. Ever since I started keeping a closer eye on my diet (now that I don’t live at home with MARM, I need to make sure that I’m not eating too much, but still eating enough!), I’ve found it harder and harder to justify a meal that can easily take up 70% of my daily calorie intake. But clearly I’m not that actually dedicated to this whole thing, because when I found myself with a voucher to try out the new wagyu burger range at Ribs and Burgers, I was all over that in an instant.