Brooklyn Depot Burgers & Brew
A gleeful burger-laden homage to the city that never sleeps.
Already a queue-inspiring hotspot on the Gold Coast, Brooklyn Depot has recently set down roots in Surry Hills, offering a down-home American experience with burgers, shakes and 'hawt dogs'. Both the menu and the decor — which feature New York suburbs painted on one wall, subway signs and street art portraits of the Brooklyn Bridge and Big Apple hip-hop royalty Jay Z — pay gleeful homage to the food and attitude of the city that never sleeps.
Garbage fries ($10) are an absolute must; order them and get a wire basket full of salty shoestring fries with bacon pieces, onion rings, juicy frickles (that's fried pickles) and a generous dash of cheese sauce delivered to your table. House-churned milkshakes are another specialty. Try the Yo' Mama ($8, or $12 if you want it alcoholic) which — with shards of Kit Kat — is chunky and frothy, and perfect for either a sweet-toothed snack or to pair with some fiery buffalo wings.
A Brooklyn BBQ Board ($36) is an ideal sampler of the American fare which is this depot's calling card, with soft pulled lamb shoulder that pairs well with fluffy slices of toasted brioche, buffalo chicken wings and barbecue pork ribs which achieve an ideal, treacle-like stickiness. Small bowls of 'cowboy caviar' (a bean and roasted pepper salsa) and a respectable slaw ($5-8) show the kitchen can turn their hand to fresher, lighter options when the mood strikes.
The focus, however, is firmly on junk food done right, and the classic greasy spoon vibe continues into the mains, which include the hearty Depot burger ($15). This one positively heaves with double beef patties, double American cheese, smoked bacon and a hunk of lightly grilled pineapple on a milk bun.
The drinks list offers a range of New York-themed puns and some serious craft. The gin-based Lychee't and Steal ($15) gives out citrus flavours, fruity sweetness and aromatics in the form of a smouldering twig of rosemary atop the glass. The Tequila Be Kind ($16) shows similar finesse, balancing tequila, ginger syrup and lime.
You'll want to stick around for dessert, which again offers fun options like an Oreo Do-My-Nut Sundae ($9), which comes with a fresh doughnut, ice cream and whipped cream for good measure. A caramel pecan chocolate brownie ($11) is similarly indulgent, with thick, sticky caramel sauce as well as a generous dollop of vanilla bean ice cream.
It's the kind of spot that could serve several different functions with ease — you could gather some friends, pile into a booth seat and eat your way into a food coma. Alternatively, swing by after work, perch on a bar stool, nibble on fries and pickles, while sipping on a Pabst Blue Ribbon, or even utilise it as a superior take away joint.
The only thing that doesn't really make sense is the soundtrack. Having the likes of Jay-Z and Biggie on the menu and the walls is great, but let's get these hometown heroes on the speaker system as well.