“I made a real mess eating [mine], but isn’t that part of the deal with big burgers?” says dining reviewer WENDY JOHNSON.
CANBERRA is exploding with places devoted to the almighty burger. Barton has seen Burger Craft open. Brodburger has broadened into Phillip. Melbourne brand Pattysmiths has popped open in Dickson. And so it goes on.
Our latest burger experience saw us land at The Pits, on Hindmarsh Drive. Here you’ll find a friendly neighbourhood burger truck pumping out burgers and fried chicken. You can eat onsite or takeaway.
The Pits is by Grease Monkey, which claims “It ain’t food if it ain’t greasy.” This isn’t so much a warning for those trying to avoid heart attack dining, it’s more a reflection of the humour of the place.
The menu is posted on the side of the truck and once you order you can find a possie on one of the picnic tables scattered about. One zone has fake lawn, plants, music, graffiti artwork and a couple of arcade game machines to play while you hang out for your food. Overall, the vibe is pretty cool.
Six burgers are available, a couple of fried chicken options and some combos if you want beef and bird.
My friend loves a straightforward, but great, burger and it didn’t take her long to choose the “Greasy” ($14). The moist beef patty was thick, but not too thick. The burger is loaded with lettuce, cheese, onion, pickle, relish and a special sauce. She wasn’t expecting the sauce to have a strong kick, but it did. Grease Monkey could do well to let customers know about the spice when ordering, for those who aren’t enamoured.
I intended to get my hit of greasy with a beef patty but changed my mind when I saw the “Pit Stop burger” ($17). It was delish. The bun was stuffed with slow-cooked, BBQ-smoked pork brisket, which was high on taste. The meat was a perfect match for the apple cider slaw and hot chilli mayo. I made a real mess eating it, but isn’t that part of the deal with big burgers?
We shared an order of chips (single serve $5) and were surprised to discover they were fairly heavily seasoned (we weren’t told so when we ordered and there’s no indication on the side of the truck). The house-made seasoning is strong on paprika. We were looking forward to plain, hot chips with a good dose of salt.
The lineup of burgers includes the double deluxe, with streaky bacon for an extra hit of grease ($18), a portobello mushroom burger ($16), a southern fried chicken option ($17) and – for those who can take it – the “Full Service”. This whopper features a beef patty, bacon, egg, cheese, pineapple, lettuce, tomato, beetroot, onion, relish and more of that hot sauce. My, oh, my.