Part of me is ashamed to tell you that when I travelled to the USA in 2013, the first thing I ate in (sing it with me) the laa-aa-aand of the freeeeeee* was a McGriddle. I was tired, hungry and suffering the utter injustice of a layover at LAX, an airport you’d expect to be a whole lot better for time-killing purposes.
Anyway, husbo was handed the task of hunting for food and he brought back a couple of McGriddles because eating the most random things we can find on foreign McDonald’s menus is part of our travel routine.
For those in the dark, a McGriddle is a basically a sausage and egg McMuffin but in place of the muffin is two small pancakes made with maple flavouring. It is also, despite everything the combination of those ingredients might lead you to believe, absolutely delicious.
Those Yanks sure know how to combine two seemingly unmatched ingredients to create a taste sensation. Like waffles and brisket, which is exactly what I ordered Kansas City Shuffle, the new kid on the block at The Rocks in Sydney.
The hint is in the name, Kansas City being the largest city in Missouri and the Kansas City Shuffle referring to a con game that depends on the conman letting the victim believe he knows what’s going on.
But at Kansas City Shuffle on Gloucester Street there’s no such trickery, just a mod space and an impressive menu that strikes a delicious balance between on-trend Aussie faves and American diner-style eats.
But first, coffee. Single Origin Roasters are responsible for KCS’s beans and, thanks also to the perfectly silky soy (no mean feat if my life’s experience is anything to go by), my flat white was—quite frankly—flawless. I then settled in with a cold drip and perused the menu.
I was leaning strongly towards the toasted pumpkin bread with avo, whipped feta, heirloom tomato and toasted seeds but as my visit was for review purposes, I felt I should taste test the dish I had heard so much about. My lunch date kindly adopted my strategy and ordered the fried chicken sandwich on a donut bun with slaw, pickles and jalapeno aioli. She had been tossing up between that hallmark sambo and the spring lamb and black barley salad with smoked eggplant yogurt and dukkah.
Although I am sure we would have been impressed regardless, we were feeling particularly smug about our choices when they arrived. Post meal, we were feeling even smug-er-er.
My waffle was light with just the right amount of crisp, the perfect resting place for the melt-in-your-mouth beef brisket, poached egg and smoked chilli butter. For my date, the burger conjured the standard ‘how am I going to get my mouth around that?’ feeling but she persevered and seemed to manage just fine.
With a smoothie bowl of acai, house granola and coconut yogurt as well as the pancake with lemon curd, blueberries, cream cheese parfait and smoked almonds on the menu, I’d be pretty keen to return to Kansas City Shuffle for breakfast some time soon. Pleasingly, that doesn’t mean setting an alarm. KCS opens at 7am and remains committed to the entire menu until its 3pm close.
Kansas City Shuffle is also licensed thanks to the adjoining bar, currently a work in progress and expected to open early next year.
For those in a hurry, there are two takeaway windows sitting pretty street side. To the left the ‘Little City Window’ offers simple bites such as a bacon and egg roll or brekky tart. To the right is where the caffeine’s at—take yours with a barista clairvoyant reading for $15 if you so desire.
I suspect there’s a lot of coffee in my future. And I suspect plenty of it will come courtesy of Kansas City Shuffle.
*No, really. I mean sing it with me. Did you sing it? Because if you didn’t, I want you to scroll right back up there and give it a shot. It’s fun. And if you’re really feeling it, finish it off: “…and the hoo-ooome [pause for effect] of theeeeeeee [pause for effect] braaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaave”.
Image credit: Kansas City Shuffle
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