We test the new menu at Burgers by Josh and he speaks exclusively to us about everything from meat ratios, sauces and his inspiration to celebrate the start of the second leg of his North Sydney residency at Greenwood Plaza, proving again just why he is king when it comes to massive Sydney burgers.
The hunt for the burger elite is still strong, and Burgers by Josh is still one of the main contenders leading the pack. With the doors closed to the public, we were able to witness Josh at home in the kitchen with his usual look of care and concentration even on one of the quietest of days. “We do 300 burgers on a quiet day and 700 to 800 on a busy day. I dream about burgers now”, he says. It truly isn’t hard to see why that it is his passion for creation and the food industry that is the reason for his massive success in 2015. “My inspiration comes from my love of burgers and the American culture. I love the ‘dude food’ element to this food. It’s what I enjoyed eating on my days off when I was a chef and now I’m bringing it to the people of Sydney which is amazing”, Josh proclaimed.
Greenwood Plaza’s Upper Deck is a spacious, well-lit, wood-filled space that has plenty of seating. From booths, to benches to stools – the environment is lively and pleasant. Chalk drawings line the outside of the kitchen and further create an exciting scene. A bar on the side serves beers and cocktails and this is where friendly staff took our order. It’s a very smooth process.
The old favourite and perhaps Josh’s pièce de résistance to date is the ‘The Infamous Primo’ which returns on the new menu. The double wagyu patty is perfectly bathed in double cheese, jalapenos, crispy American bacon, beer battered onion rings, iceberg lettuce and topped with a fried jalapeno popper that is stuffed with cheese. It’s a carnivorous paradise.
The meat was cooked perfectly – moist and slightly pink which allowed it to do the always-amazing trick of dissolving in the mouth. It’s been wondered for a long time, but what is the secret to Josh’s patty prep? “My meat ratios have taken over a year of experimentation of different cuts and varieties of beef. I now have something I am truly proud of and I am using a 50/25/25 ratio of different wagyu cuts.” The playful sweetness and tang of The Primo sauce is complementary to the earthy tones of the meat. “The J sauce and Primo sauce are 2 sauces I have been working with for over a year. The Primo sauce is truly unique and I am using ingredients I doubt anyone else would be using in a burger sauce”, Josh says proudly before continuing, “The J sauce pays homage to the In ‘N Out burger sauce but with my own personal twists.”
A new addition to the menu is the mainstay of two chicken items. ‘The Colonel’ is a stunning chicken burger whose obvious hero is the Southern fried free range chicken breast that is also available as Chicken Strips for a side option. It’s smoky, warm and has a pinch of a biting spice beneath the coolness of the Mississippi mayo. “Everything is made in house including the chicken and coating. It is a fusion between Taiwanese fried chicken and American south creating a truly unique flavour profile” and perhaps what enhances this more is the tangy bite of the accompanying pickles – which Josh now sources from a new outlet. “These pickles were introduced to me by my burger bro Brad Johnson (Dee Why Hotel head chef). The boys at Westmont have an awesome product with such a depth of flavour that cuts through my rich cheese and the fat of the wagyu brilliantly”, Josh happily says of the Westmont Picklery Pickles. Hands down, the best pickles this reviewer has tasted.
If the addition of these chicken items, the vegetarian options of the ‘Lisa Simpson pt.2’ (slow roasted field mushrooms, American cheese, J sauce, Westmont Picklery Pickles, beer battered onion rings), or the all-new Tomato and Bocconcini Salad still isn’t enough to get you to North Sydney then perhaps keep your eyes out for some serious announcements. “My specials will be re-launching again this week, and I have got some new doozies in store plus some classics.”
Sides and burgers range from $4 up to $21 for The Primo. Extra patties/bacon/fries/sauce are also available to purchase for you to build up your own desired masterpiece.
The first surprise of which is his collaboration with Young Henrys in Newtown on the 23rd of January. Details here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1510446305928112/
To keep up to date on Josh’s whereabouts head here: https://www.facebook.com/burgersbyjosh.
Burgers by Josh can be found at the Greenwood Plaza on the Upper Deck in North Sydney for the next few weeks. Head to the Facebook page above for updates. Hours are Tuesday 11:30am – 2:30pm; Wed-Fri 11:30am – 2:30pm and 5pm – 9pm