Purveyor: The Lord Wolseley Hotel Pyrmont NSW, Australia
Menu Item: Fried Chicken Schnitzel Burger
Price: $17 AUD
Squawk: This quaint pub is well off the beaten path and when you’re not super easy to get to, you need to give people a reason to make the extra effort and the Lord Wolseley’s “Pub Life Kitchen” does. They attract people from far and wide with their now infamous “burger experiments” that appear on the menu most Wednesdays. These experiments get a lot of people talking which is how we heard about their Doritos encrusted chicken burger. Yep you read that right. Doritos. There was a bit of panic when we got there (on a Friday) because we didn’t see it on the menu, but a quick chat with the friendly Barmaid revealed that not only was this mystical burger real, it was available. You can imagine our relief.
So how was it? The meat was a nice combo of breast and thigh – very juicy surrounded with a very, very fried, very very crunchy crust of Doritos crumbs. All this frying and crumbing gives this chicken burger an extremely high crunch factor. In fact, it just might be the highest recorded crunch factor in a chicken burger to date. We felt the burger would have been improved with a little slaw, but the large pickle slices were more than adequate and added nice flavour, crunch (more!) and kept things soft. We also appreciated the fact that the American cheese slice was actually melted. This is a very nice, and often overlooked, touch that can bring any burger up a point. And finally, great chips – nice and salty with the skin on, and not greasy or gross.
Buaawk: It’s hard to fault this one, but we wouldn’t be doing our jobs if we didn’t find at least one or two was to make it a perfect ten. Hot sauce is very important to the Holy-Cluck Reviewer Team and for this crunchy burger, Sriracha is the wrong choice. A vinegar based sauce like Franks or Texas Pete could have pushed this one over the edge. The pickles were great, but we’d love to see a couple more on there. The mayo was oddly sweet and was a major detractor overall. The burger is already sweet with the Doritos crust – after all what are Doritos but corn, salt and sugar? Finally, the batter was fried almost to blackness. We’re guessing this is a necessary consequence of making a Doritos encrusted chicken breast in the first place, and we can forgive it, but still, if they could get it to a nice golden brown, they’d be winning.
Bonus Points: For innovation and crunch factor.