Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Mary's, Newtown

I'm trying to wean myself off of racing around trying to get to all the new "hip" places that open up in Sydney. Let's face it, it's tiring, costly and I'm getting kinda fat existing on a diet of sliders, tacos, fried chicken and cheesy fries (I think I've just listed my death row meal right there).



But when I saw a picture on Instagram of the cheeseburger at Newtown's newly opened Mary's -- part pub + part greasy American diner -- I just could not resist the junk food lure. I'd had heard talk that the cheeseburger at Mary's was as close to my beloved Shake Shack burger that you could get here in Sydney.


Mary's is located on Mary Street (no guesses where the name came from). It's a street I've walked down a thousand times before yet I've never really noticed this building before. Apparently it's had a million previous lives but I'd go out on a limb and say that this is by far the tastiest.


The space is fairly large, made more so by the addition of a mezzanine level that offers table services. We decide to sit downstairs (where you order at the bar) as it's closer to the bar for my beer loving companions (and closer to the loos for me)! I love that the place is still a bit rough around the edges and hasn't been tarted up too much -- it gives it that slightly Melbourne edge that we all love so much. It reminds me of what Newtown "used to be like" before the Max Brenner's and Gloria Jeans moved in.



I'm proudly told by Mr Shawn and Miss Chicken that Mary's serves Young Henry Beer - a local brew.  I feel pleased I can reply that Parramatta now has its own brew house and The Boy has given it his tick of approval. I have a sip of the Young Henry's - it tastes like...beer.



The menu is fairly small which makes ordering a breeze.  I get heart palpitations just looking at all the fast-food (but done in a kinda slow way) goodness. I'll have one of everything please!


First order up is a plastic basket lined with greaseproof paper that somehow manages to contain the pool of creamy, oozy Mash + Gravy ($5.00). It looks a bit like something The Colonel would make but it's WAY beyond anything he could ever serve up. The mash is so creamy it's almost liquid and the gravy is nice and peppery. The thing with mash + gravy is that it's perfect for dipping things in to -- like Fried Chicken ($16.00 for half a bird). This chicken was great! The peppery note in the batter is what really made it for me along with the combination of moist meat and crunchy outer.


Our burgers arrive snugly wrapped in greaseproof paper. The basket is piled high with hot, crunchy chips that have the perfect amount of salt on them (FYI, chips dipped into mash + gravy = an OMG moment).


I opted for the Cheeseburger ($14.00) and Miss Chicken went with the Mary's burger (also $14.00) that comes with a bit of salad on it. Mr Shawn embraced his inner vegetarian and ordered the 'shroom burger ($12.00) which I had a bite of - loved the big, juicy, meat field mushroom that they've used in lieu of a meat patty.

Now onto the cheeseburger.  It's wrong  of me to compare it to Shake Shack as it's really nothing like it (I'm told that honour goes more to the Mary's Burger which I'm going to try next time).  If I had to make a comparison I'd say it's similar to a McDonald's cheeseburger - soft bun (though Mary's is a buttermilk bun) with a thin patty, tomato sauce, melty cheese, onion and my beloved gherkins. Unlike Macca's though the patty has real flavour to it -- it's quite smoky and peppery and the super soft bun is like biting into air.  As soon I finished my last mouthful I was wondering if I could order "just one more"?


Mary's is at 6 Mary' Street, Newtown.

Mary's on Urbanspoon

30 comments:

  1. I feel like I need to take a day off and just cruise Newtown for all of these places you keep blogging about....

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    1. There is some GREAT shopping on SoKi (that's hipster talk for South King Street). It's worth taking the day off just to explore that little bit of Newtown.

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  2. I was hoping to go during the weekend but couldn't make time for it. Damn the mash looks too good!

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    1. I'll try not to eat all their mash before you return to Sydney.

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  3. hmhmhmhm i wouldn't mind some of that mash right now! with fried chicken of course

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    1. So delish! I've been thinking about this mash & chook quite a lot lately. Too much probably.

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  4. I have just been reading a review of Soda Pony in Newtown...is Newtown hip and groovy? It sounds like it is.

    This food looks comforting and perfect for the cold weather!

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    1. Newtown "used" to very alternative, hip & groovy about 20 years I'd say. And then it became quite mainstream with places like Gloria Jeans & Just Jeans moving in. The southern part of Newtown, where Soda Pony is, is much more alternate with its interesting shops & cafes...Mary's is sort of at the beginning of what I'd call the "good part" of the suburb with all the interesting eats & shopping. The rest of Newtown seems to be home to about 20 fro-yo shops which is a bit of a joke amongst the locals now.

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  5. That mash n' gravy look fantastic and I can imagine myself dipping that chicken into it...out of all the new places opening up in Newtown this is at the top of the list!

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    1. It was delicious food...the mash, oh the mash!

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  6. I don't know how you do it, finding and visiting all these new places. Can't wait to try the airy cheeseburger. It sounds scrumptious.

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    1. I hardly discover any new places - not in 'burbs like Newtown anyway. I just read blogs & stalk people's twitter feeds.

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  7. I sure do miss out on everything that opens in newtown. I just went for a run so is it wrong that i want to dig right into that cheeseburger?

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    Replies
    1. Awww, Mary's will be around for a while yet I'm sure so you've got plenty of time to visit.

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  8. YES! This looks like a great burger, will have to try it very soon.

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    1. I want to go back to try the Mary's burger...

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  9. Ooh dying to come here! Especially for that fried chicken :D

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    1. There's never enough fried chicken IMO.

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  10. I got my eye on that 'shroom burger - I gots to have it!

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    Replies
    1. Not long now and it will be yours.

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  11. i really really want to get those burgers and that fried chicken. if only fried chicken was healthy!

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    1. Fried chicken isn't healthy? What do you mean?

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  12. I hear this place is a bit of a legend for the fried chicken, good to see we have some southern US food in Sydney!

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    1. The chicken was really good...really really good! Watch this space as I've heard of a new soul food kitchen opening up in this neck of the woods soon.

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  13. Wow that mash looks super creamy and yummy! Now I want to go back to Mary's and dunk some fried chicken into that mash and gravy!

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  14. I need to seriously check Mary's out!

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  15. Oh... That potato and gravy! My friend ate here and was most insistent that I should get the potato and gravy when I go.

    Wasn't really necessary - I hardly ever pass over anything with potatoes in it! Let alone mash 'taters :D

    Your post just reinforces why I will be ordering it hehe

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  16. I keep going to Newtown and forgetting about this place.

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  17. There's really nothing like a bit of comfort food some times! That mash looks amazing (along with everything else)!

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  18. I'll be honest. I laughed at this:

    "I have a sip of the Young Henry's - it tastes like...beer.". good one.

    Best thing here is the mash. seriously good.

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