They're burgers... but not as you know them.
It’s certainly not standard fare to begin a story about Sydney’s newest burger restaurant with a description of its ice cream. But then again, nothing chef Kerby Craig puts his creative mind and freak-esque talents to can be described as ‘standard’.
With the launch of Ume Burger, the creative force behind the former Japanese fine diner Ume Restaurant in Surry Hills has brought his signature burger creations to The Streets.
Now, back to the ice cream, or ‘soft cream’ to be precise. Originating from the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, an incredibly smooth, creamy milk base is infused with wonderfully delicious and inspired flavours such as pumpkin, matcha and its interesting sibling, houjicha, a green- tea distinctive from other Japanese green teas because it is roasted in a porcelain pot over charcoal.
In some ways the soft cream is a metaphor for the Ume Burger experience - characteristically Japanese, impeccably made and unexpectedly modern.
Naturally, the star of the show is the burger. Following on from Kerby’s wildly successful appearance at the ‘Burger Kings’ event at Wulugul Pop Up earlier this year, the menu at Ume Burger features the top-selling Ebi Burger, made with prawn katsu, Japanese tartare sauce and shredded cabbage, and the eponymous Ume Cheese Burger - a beef pattie, mustard and American cheese, shot with Japanese influence in the form of rice vinegar pickles and Ume’s special sauce; all served on a Hokkaido-style milk bun created by award- winning pastry chef John Ralley.
It’s an authentically Japanese space, with interior designers Amber Road drawing inspiration from the ‘Wabi Sabi’ philosophy - a celebration of the uncluttered, the handmade and the beauty of modest things. There’s even a Tokyo-style vending machine to dispense drinks.
Ume Burger is now open on Wulugul Walk, 7 days a week.