Wahroonga is a few things to me. It is the place I used to work the markets every Christmas with the lovely Annie from The Australian Bush Christmas Cake Company, it is the place I always drove through on the way home when I lived on the Central Coast, the place where all the incredibly rich people live on Estate-styled properties and it’s the place where the well-mannered young gents from Knox Grammar tip their boater hats at you if you stop for them at a pedestrian crossing. It is not a town one would associate with some of the best burgers in Sydney. For me those suburbs are wherever Queen Sarah and the BL Crew, Burgers by Josh or Chef Adam at Chicken and Sons (among others) house their kitchens.
BURGER HOUNDS has set up shop in the food-notorious corner shop of Wahroonga. I will now be making more regular purpose visits to smash the wonderful treats Chef James Ballingall and his crew are churning out. It is with big thanks to the gents at The Burger Collective that I discovered this wonderful place – they took me out to dinner and made me much fatter.
BURGER HOUNDS VENUE:
The Burger Hounds venue is set in the food-notorious little rounded corner store on the side of main Wahroonga shops roundabout. The venue has been many different restaurants over the years, It’s been a grill styled takeaway called Skewers and then a fish and chip shop for years from memory. It is quite small and is just large enough for the Burger Hounds to fry and have two counters. The shop front is rounded looking on to the pathway which has some bar and smaller styled seating as per the pic above. The venue is predominantly takeaway but the seating isn’t bad. It will be quite cold in winter, the venue may have some heaters for then. I will rarely order a takeaway burger, I need to shoot and eat as quick as possible as I loathe the soggy bun.
On the day we visited it was pissing down with rain which made for some crowded foot traffic out front but we managed to put two tables together and enjoy our feast.
The only downside of the venue is the hours. Make sure you check before you depart for your trip there. They are closed Sunday and Monday, close at 5 on Tuesday and Wednesday, 8 on Thursday and Friday, and at 7 on Saturdays. If you’re visiting after a work day don’t dilly dally – between 6 and 8 they get smashed so you want to be in that queue as early as possible. Chef – you need to open Sundays!! The burgerinos need to be feed :).
Chef James Ballingal has been around for years. He has whipped up food storms all over the world and has had some culinary benchmarks way higher up the food chain than a burger joint. Lecturer at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, Executive Chef at Eden Park Stadium in NZ, Head of Culinary at William Blue College (oddly booked a table there yesterday), National GM for the Compass Group and Executive Chef when it was named All Phones Arena. He is a qualified chef, baker and butcher – you know things are going to be good! If only the kitchen was bigger he would make his own buns and grind his own meat. His secret recipe patties are minced daily at the butcher, literally around the corner.
Chef’s culinary skills have now been honed into making burgers finely cooked and worthy of road trips to get to Wahroonga.
THE BURGER COLLECTIVE:
I better plug these guys, they did invite me for a burg smashing haha. At it’s heart TBC is an app/ community for burger lovers. It’s kind of like Zomato or Rotten Tomatoes but for burgers. You get the app, visit burger stores that are associated with TBC and scan your phone on their in-store tablet. They are all over Sydney and Melbourne and are planning on world domination at some stage. Once you have scanned you can then review, score out of five and upload a pic on the app. You then get added into the community of like-minded burger whores who can read, comment and get inspiration for fun ways to gain weight. You may also get some surprises when you scan including free burgers, free fries or free bacon on burgers and/or more.
I use the app for most burgers I review and have noticed the increase and love for the app is kicking off. If you are a burger freak, like myself, sometimes instagram is too much to kick back and scroll so you can kick back and just scroll burgers on the TBC app instead. Call it Fatspiration or MentalHealthGram.
The Burger Hounds Menu is pure food-porn. They have a standard burger menu, a special burger menu and then all the extras. Wings, various loaded fries, shakes, hot dawgz, bacon and egg rolls plus caffeine and hot chocolate hits. It’s also the only place that has dried Unicorn tears as a seasoning. I thought it was just humour – nope – that’s its name. Chef gave me a little container and I cooked my steak with it on Friday night – YUM!!
WHAT WE SMASHED:
- Cheeseburger Spring Rolls
- Poutine Loaded Fries
- Wildberry Shake
- Hound Burger – 80/20 patty, American cheese, double bacon, and dipped buttermilk onion rings, shredded lettuce, tomato, more American mustard, McClure’s pickles and Hound sauce.
- Ho Lee Fuk Burger – Southern Fried Chicken, double cheese, double baconnaise, house pickled jalapeños and sriracha.
- Blue Buffalo Burger – Souther Fried Chicken, Frank’s classic hot sauce, shredded lettuce, sliced blue cheese and killer aioli.
- Salad Burger (aka The Big Mac of your Dreams) – 2x patties, hound sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onion on sesame seed bun.
WHAT I THOUGHT:
Everything hit the mark with flying colours. The cheeseburger spring rolls are seriously the best in Sydney. They use fresh meat every day for the burgs so yesterday’s patties become the spring rolls and it’s genius for no wastage. Poutine makes my knees wobble in excitement and the Burger Hound’s Poutine Loaded Fries are pure bliss. They also do a Chilli Beef Loaded Fries and a Cheese and Onion Loaded Fries but I don’t think I could order past the Poutine.
I indulged in the Wildberry Shake and loved it – basically a strawberry shake which is one of my fave things to drink. I went halves in the Hound Burger and the Blue Buffalo Burger with TBC’s Ross. The Hound is their signature beef burger. It was fantastic. Epic patty cooked perfectly and four rashers, I say 4 x rashers of bacon and those onion rings make for perfect additions.
I had to order the Blue Buffalo to satisfy my love for blue cheese. The hot sauce is divine but it gives a serious kick and the Castello Burger Blue nicely balances it out. This was my fave – will order this one again.
Now – while I didn’t eat the Salad (Big Mac) or the Ho Lee Fuk burgers Ross and Joey loved them and the Salad ended Ross. That serious burger destroying bearded patty warrior could not finish it – admittedly – he did just polish off two halves of my burgers but incompletion is for the weak haha. I will eat both these burgers on my next visit.
You are definitely spoiled for choice at Burger Hounds. I am pretty sure there is twenty or more epic burgers to choose from and they all sound incredible!!
One of the best burger joints I have visited this year. I cannot thank The Burger Collective gents enough for introducing me to this Wahroonga marvel. Grab your crew – BURGER HOUNDS demands a road trip for epic burg smashing!!
SCORE BREAKDOWN: 3/3 food, 2/2 service, 1/1 drinks, 0/1 venue & ambience, 1/1 cost, 1/1 toilets and 1/1 bonus
Burger Hounds Deets:
PH: 02 9487 1886
1 Redleaf Avenue, Wahroonga, NSW 2067
- Tue & Wed 9am – 5pm
- Thur & Fri: 9am – 8pm
- Sat: 11am – 7pm
- Sun & Mon: Closed
TAKEAWAY: Yes (predominantly)
LOCAL DELIVERY: I do not believe so – check with venue – will update when I hear back from them
VEGETARIAN OPTIONS: Minimal
GLUTEN FREE OPTIONS: Minimal
KID FRIENDLY: Definitely
*** JK (and any guests of Spooning Australia) were invited guests of the establishment and/or any PR agencies representing them. However, as always, if it was shite I would happily tell you as such ***