I’ve often said that in Sydney, people will travel for food. Armed with a Google Maps or a GPS, we will hunt down that laneway, that side street, the underground bar. Whether it is in the CBD or some suburb we can’t pronounce and have never been to, we will go to extraordinary lengths to track down and try something new. Sometimes it is only one dish, one slice of cake, a certain drink that drives us Sydneysiders in our – frankly occasionally crazy – food pursuits and our willingness to stand in a very long queue.
So when a Heston Blumenthal alumni opens a burger joint in a North Sydney street of largely office blocks that doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic and not much other retail nearby, word spreads quickly and I find a ridiculous number of people in a small space and a line out the door. I heard that Eastern suburbs residents even crossed the harbour bridge to come here.
Five Points is the new burger hotspot with Tomislav Martinovic as the “consultant chef”. Yes, TM worked for Heston – and more recently had his own hatted restaurant in Sydney – so I can’t help but wonder if I’m going to get an actual burger or just something that looks like a burger.
Its American style – probably American calories too but what the hell, I contemplate walking back to the CBD afterwards and feel justified in getting burger, chips and a milkshake. Of course I don’t actually do that but it is the thought that counts. Your choices are the Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island. Being in Sydney I do think they could still throw in a bit of a patriotic ‘Straya burger with a bit of beetroot.
I go for the Bronx Burger – it’s big, it’s juicy, and it’s delicious with the right amount of mustard and sauce so its not just a drippy mess; the bun has a good consistency and is not sugary like some brioche burger buns have been of late. The chips have decent crunch though are underseasoned, and unfortunately they have no slaw available that day to try. The salted caramel milkshake has a proper amount of flavour without being sickeningly sweet. Despite the queue, my order does arrive reasonably quickly. I know the next time I’m at Aldi in North Sydney buying the occasional random stuff like a slab of marble or garden gnome with built in lighting I’ll be enticed into trying the other boroughs.
Five Points, 124 Walker Street, North Sydney