The Australian NYC: Down Under, Downtown!

"Downunder in Downtown!"

“Downunder in Downtown!”

I have found a beautiful oasis in the heart of midtown Manhattan.  A place that makes me feel homesick for my other favorite place on Earth.  No, not Disney World or Cedar Point.  A place where kangaroos are on money, rugby fans revel, and coffee is served strong with a cube of lamington.  A place where there’s a Safeway on the corner and a Woolworth’s down the street.  A place where women glow and men plunder.  Ok, if you haven’t figured it out by now, then you are not a Men at Work fan, and I pity you!  I’m talking about The Australian NYC.

"Ya heading down the pub, soon?"

“Ya heading down the pub, soon?”

"Boundary!"

“Boundary!”

Just a few blocks north of Penn Station and Herald Square, The Australian NYC is a hot, new bar and restaurant that really captures the essence of dining in the land down under.  But don’t think for a second that it’s some knock-off of Outback Steakhouse; perish the thought!  I first laid eyes on the colorful portraits of cricketers and rugby players that adorned the walls.  Not to mention the Australian flag, which is kind of hard to miss.  And no Australian restaurant is complete without the mandatory color photograph of the iconic Sydney Opera House.  Ok, so maybe there is some Americana-kitsch involved.  I’d prefer some flags or jerseys of well-known rugby clubs, maybe some laminated candy-wrappers of Australian candies (Minties, Cherry Ripe, or Mornay), and perhaps some Australian road signs (Koala Xing in 9 km).  But decor aside, the one thing I can say is that this place does it right when it comes to service or food.

With an almost exclusive Australian ex-pat clientage filling the seats, it’s hard to not strike up a conversation with this lot.  Having visited Australia, I missed long conversations with the locals; talking about the similarities between cricket and baseball, differences between rugby and football, and all meanings behind the romantic language of Aussie slang.  Speaking of sports, when I was in Australia, I learned that if you want to make friends on the street, wear a rugby jersey!  The same can be said for this establishment; I wore my South Sydney Rabbitohs shirt, and suffice it to say, I made a few new friends at the pub!  Now if only I could go to a game…

And speaking of rugby, this place also shows rugby games from down under!  Now, I finally have a place where I can watch NRL Rabbitohs games, without having to scour the world-wide web.  Granted, I am still a newcomer to the sport, but I can’t not watch a game and be dazzled by the sheer physicality of the savage ballet that is rugby!

"Kangaroo shish-kebabs, anyone?"

“Kangaroo shish-kebabs, anyone?”

Now, as for the food, you should definitely come hungry!  Don’t worry about having to order vegemite on toast!  Start off your meal with some grilled kangaroo on a stick.  Yes, you heard me!  Kangaroo, on…a…stick!  How does it taste?  It is a nice char on the outside, but it is rather tender, if not juicy on the inside.  The sides of julienned vegetables and tamarind sauce really put this appetizer over the top.  Before you wince at the prospect of dining on Australia’s most iconic animal, just remember, it has been a staple of Aboriginal diet for thousands of years, and it is commonly sold throughout Australia.  But don’t bother asking for koala!

"Pie and chips, yum-yum!"

“Pie and chips, yum-yum!”

"Burger from down under!"

“Burger from down under!”

Main dishes include seasoned barramundi, kangaroo loin with seasonal vegetables, and their signature Australian Burger (a seasoned pattie topped with melted cheese, egg, beetroot, and grilled pineapple).  But for the true Australian aficionado, dig in to their signature meat pie and chips.  The meat pie is flavorful, meaty, and savory.  Despite its small size, better fit as an appetizer than main course, it is quite satisfying.  Be sure to squirt a liberal amount of sauce on it, or as its known, ketchup!

For dessert, save room for one of two of Australia’s signature desserts: lamington and/or pavlova.  Lamington, for those who are a choc-aholics come dessert time, is a can’t miss!  Moist, chocolatey, and coconutty, through and through!

"Mmmmm, meringue!"

“Mmmmm, meringue!”

The pavlova, on the other hand, is for those who can’t resist a sugar high!  This dessert, a staple of New Zealand kitchens, is a layer of whipped meringue, topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit.  The Australian NYC’s pavlova takes it a step further with a bottom layer of fruit syrup.  It is a real sugar rush with one spoonful, but for those who love a fancy dessert with fruit and cream, definitely dig in!

With its friendly clientele and staff, awesome food, Aussie decor, and Australian sports on the tube, it is really hard to not have a good time here, let alone smile!  And until I return to Australia, this place will be my home among the gum trees away from my home among the gum trees!  Only minus the gum trees!

(212) 869-8601

20 W 38th Street

NY, NY 10018

www.theaustraliannyc.com

 

About admin

I am a graduate of Stony Brook University, and I have a degree in History. I am an avid traveler, with an extensive knowledge of geography, a passion for photography, and a knowledge of animals too. I enjoy pop music of the 1980's, fine dining, movies, baseball, basketball, and rugby.
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One Response to The Australian NYC: Down Under, Downtown!

  1. tony says:

    I think your more Aussie than I am! Thanks for sharing the Aussie spirit!

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