The Sydney Room, Level 5, Westfield Sydney
Cnr Market and Castlereagh St Sydney NSW 2000
High-priced burger expectations
Justin North is expanding his Sydney food empire from Bécasse and Le Grand Café into the food court stakes at the new Westfield Sydney. Currently it's ranked No. 1 on Urbanspoon's NSW 'Talk of the Town' and is closely followed by a few of the other Westfield eateries although it looks like the great expectations of their high priced burgers are receiving mixed reviews. With the standard already set high with his Plan B Wagyu Beef Burger for only $10 I was curious to see, like many others, if Charlie & Co will be better. There's a longish wait in the take away queue at 12.30 during the peak lunch time and the kitchen looks like it's in full swing although looking a little frazzled under the pressure. The Wagyu & Co. Burger ($16 take away) is a wagyu beef patty served with beetroot relish, pickled gherkin and aged cheddar on a sesame bun. Slightly different to Plan B version but it's around the same size — smallish but high. I find the beef patty a little too thick for my liking and it's not as juicy as hoped. The base of the bun falls apart a little too easily making it a messy job to eat by hand. I like inclusion of the beetroot relish and pickled gherkin though. For me it doesn't quite met my expectations for a juicy and well-balanced burger which is easy to eat — would Hamburger Charlie approve it as a burger you can eat while you walk?
You can smell the truffle aroma of the Parmesan and Truffle Fries ($8) as soon as you collect them. This is a welcomed addition which Plan B doesn't offer although it comes at a price. An appropriately named Charlie's Honest Juice Orange ($4) will help my body absorb the iron today. The promise of swift service isn't really the case due to what seems like a slow queuing and ordering system when very busy. If you want to avoid the take away queue then you have the option of dining in with table service but unfortunately you'll have to queue up as well to get into this area. When you order for yourself you have the option of take away packaging or plated where upon you'll receive a buzzer. You don't pay an extra if you want to sit in the allocated self-service dining area, only for the table service area. It was quite confusing at first to work out the options and system so hopefully I've clarified it for my readers.
PROS: Seating available, Hard working staff trying to cope with rush hour, Different burger options, Chips are tasty
CONS: Premium priced burgers, Long queues when busy, Burgers might not live up to expectations
MUST TRY: Some of the other burgers and hot dog to compare
The Wagyu & Co. Burger: Wagyu burger with beetroot relish, pickled gherkin and aged cheddar on a sesame bun ($16 take away)
The story and promise
Buzzer for Self-service dining in
Reserved area for self-service dining and take away
Table service dining in area
Self-service dining area