Lorance Darwish left his Chapel Street fashion label, Urbbana, to open Little Oscar. He was inspired by a trip to New York’s Koreatown district around West 32nd Street. The joint does American-style burgers with a Korean inflection.
The menu, by head chef Will Riman, ticks off East-West fusions like sites in a guidebook. There’s a Korean-fried-chicken burger with kimchi, and gochujang Wagyu served in a soft taco. There are chicken ribs in Korean-fried, sweet-Thai and smoked-barbeque varieties. And a Nutella baklava. A delicately fried piece of silken tofu, served simply in a seafood and miso broth, is more subtle. Straight-laced burgerists can opt for the Little Oscar, with Wagyu beef, cheese, lettuce, pickles, tomato and onion jam.
The Korean Cowboy is a mix of soju and bekseju (a glutinous rice-based wine). The Hello, Is It Mojito You’re Looking For, is exactly what it sounds like. Crafty drinkers will enjoy the tap beer, provided exclusively by WA’s Nail Brewing. Wine is mostly a mix of New Zealand and South Australian standards.
The concrete and raw brick are softened with streamers of rope. Just the right number of tables makes Little Oscar intimate without being crowded. Live acts and regular DJs deliver chilled, neighbourhood vibes.