It is never too cold for ice cream.
Or in this case, gelato.
So you know how chilly the winter has been right? But thank God the weather has been warmer these few days, spring is coming soon, I can tell you that. Anyway, few weeks ago on a windy, drizzling day, I went to Darlinghurst to have a taste of Gelato Messina, the gelateria which everyone seems to be talking about.
The place is only about 10 mins walk from Kings Cross railway station, and you'll find it without no fuss (especially if you have GPS on your phone). Messina has two neighboring shops; one is dedicated for gelato pattiserie and the other one is for normal gelato selections and this is where some seatings are available.
|Clockwise from top: Messina stores, the 'formula', gelato cakes display|
In the gelato pattiserie, you can actually witness the chefs doing their magic to create the most dainty and beautiful gelato cakes, and the result is even beyond my expectations. They aren't short in the creativity department, really. Having read so many reviews about the mushroom gelato cake (a.k.a. Dr Evil's Magic mushroom), it is so nice to see it with my own eyes and marvel at its charm.
|Mini gelato cakes display|
I couldn't order the big one, so I had to turn to the smaller option of Dr Evil's mushroom: the Mini Me. I couldn't hide my smile just by looking at it, and the smile was getting even bigger when it finally landed on my palm. Mini Me doesn't just look amazing, it's also quite complicated. The cute little cake consists of: chocolate gelato (the head part of the mushroom, the gelato is sprayed by red chocolate butter), dulce de leche jam (inside filling), peanut butter cookies (inside filling), vanilla gelato (the foot of the mushroom) and popping candy & feulletine (the grass).
|Mini Me (Dr. Evil chocolate gelato, dulce de leche jam, peanut butter cookie, vanilla gelato, popping candy & feulletine) - $9.9|
The gelato is more solid than I expected, it's quiet hard to cut it using spoon. And the popping candy part isn't my favourite although it gets perfect scores for creativity.
Apart from that, this little mushroom is pure bliss. I can't fault the gelato which has really nice flavour and richness, and I do hope there's more of the dulce de leche jam and the cookie.Next, I want to try the burger gelato cake!
|Mini Me innards|
Of course, the trip wouldn't be complete without me trying their famous gelato. How amazing does the display look? It's every kid's dream place, and I admit that I almost stick my face to the glass.
They also have few specials on the black board which changes everyday, and I was so determined to get the Selley's (milk chocolate gelato with flourless chocolate cake and caramel sauce).
|Clockwise from top: price list, specials board, the counter|
|More flavours to choose from|
But the fate said otherwise: the last scoop of Selley's was taken by the person in front of me in the queue. I was pretty disappointed but they have massive range of gelato to choose so I wiped the tears quietly (OK there was no tears but you get my point right?). I finally settled on the flavours that seem to be favourited: salted caramel with white chocolate chips and pandan & coconut.
It turned out to be the best pairing of flavours ever. The salted caramel is quite rich and very creamy, the pandan & coconut is much subtler in flavour but isn't inferior to the earlier. Together they are partners made in heaven, and the salted caramel kinda acts like the brown sugar part of the deadly combination pandan-coconut-brown sugar.
|Salted caramel with white chocolate chips and pandan & coconut gelato - $4.9 (two scoops)|
So after eating dessert first, I moved on to the main. The Burger Joint had been recommended by fellow foodies, and I found it quite easily too.
|The Burger Joint, Darlinghurst|
The place is rather small actually, but I noticed that most of the customers do take away. The menu is listed efficiently on a huge red board acting like a wall. You can build your own burger, or you can be a bit adventurous and choose one from the many varieties of burgers and wraps.
I chose the chilli beef burger mainly because the words "super hot" written beside the name, and also because I would love to sweat a bit in that chilly weather.
|Chilli beef burger (grilled chilli beef patty with sauteed onions, melted cheese and homemade chilli sauce) - $9.5|
It's on the verge of collapsing if isn't for the toothpick holding it together. It is a tall affair, and actually the best burger I've had for sometime now. Everything works really well: the pattie is juicy and spicy as promised, the tomato, lettuce, and onions are crunchy, and nothing can go wrong with melted cheese.
The problem is, it's not hot enough to make me sweat. Otherwise, it is a great, big burger.
The burger would weep if it didn't meet its inseparable pair, so the small fries was ordered.
|Chips - $3|
Overall it was such a great eating out day. My hands are face were frozen, but my heart melts away with the deliciousness of the gelato and also the burger. The hype isn't lying, after all.
Oh and happy Ied Mubarak for those who are celebrating! I miss eating ketupat (steamed pressed rice in woven leaves), really.
Currency: $1 = IDR 9,500
Gelato Messina: 5/5 (Must try)
So far the best gelato I've had (and superb gelato cakes although a bit pricey), affordable price, friendly service, nice ambiance esp. if you can browse the gelato selections display.
The Burger Joint: 4/5 (Recommended)
Great burger and chips (yet to try other menus), affordable price, service is quick and quite friendly, ambiance is OK.
Shop 1/241 Victoria St
Darlinghurst, NSW 2010
Phone: (02) 8354 1223
THE BURGER JOINT
393 Liverpool St
Darlinghurst, NSW 2010
Phone: (02) 9380 2575