I may be a food snob about some things. But when a gourmet hot dog joint opens around the corner, who am I to turn my nose up at a sausage in a bun?
Phat Brats in one of the slew of ‘dude food’ places that have opened up in Melbourne recently and as its name suggests it specialises in sausages. Not piggy-pink BBQ snags but locally made spicy chorizo, lamb and rosemary and chilli dogs for discerning hot dog eaters.
The interior is fairly spartan and functional – a counter where you place your order, an open flame grill for the sizzling snags and wipe-down tables and wood-topped stools.
Out of their nine specialty sausages I’ve had the wagyu beef ($7.90), cheesy smoked kransky ($8.90) and pork and sage ($8.90).
The beef sausage was fat and juicy, served in a soft brioche-like bun (comes in classic or seeded) with a zigzag of tomato sauce and mild mustard. Simple and satisfying, you couldn’t ask for anything more.
I enjoyed the melted cheese squirting out of my kransky but was a bit bemused by the German potato salad and dill pickles sitting atop the bread roll, rather than as I expected, on the side. The whole construction made the meal messier than necessary and in the end I just scraped the salad aside to eat afterwards.
My favourite so far has been the pork and sage teamed with the sweetness of braised apple and red cabbage, some crunchy shaved fennel and aioli. It even came with crackling bits (though they weren’t crunchy at all).
I highly recommend completing your meal with possibly the best fries I’ve had in Melbourne ($3 as a side, $5 whole serve). I don’t know what they do with their potatoes and beer batter but they are the closest thing I’ve had to Heston Blumenthal’s triple-cooked chips in a fast food joint! Just note that they are not as good takeaway, though still very moreish with home made seasoning. You can get the fries with cheese or as chilli fries but I say why gild the lily? I don’t think you even need to dip them in gravy, tomato sauce, bbq sauce or aioli (extra 80c).
For more excellent fast food in the area, try Huxtaburger.
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