It might be called Ume Burger, but for many people the star attraction here is the pink, help-yourself soft-serve machine. It’s becoming something of a tradition to film the (mostly amateur) attempts at filling cones and post them to Instagram.

The flavour inside changes regularly, but it will no doubt be exciting and unusual. On opening day it was a soft and icy strawberry and shiso flavour; somewhere between familiar soft serve and a Sicilian granita. Otherwise it might be pumpkin, sweet potato, roasted tea or lavender and white chocolate.

But of course, Kerby Craig and Regina Jose Bar Ume know a thing or two about burgers, too. Along with the four signatures there’s a pretty menchi burger with a hefty patty of crumbed pork belly and pork mince, shredded cabbage, mustard, Japanese barbeque sauce and a yuzu-kosho mayo.

Then there are the sodas. An addictively sweet-and-sour blend of brown sugar and yuzu comes out of a vintage Japanese vending machine, which is operated with pre-bought tokens.

There’s more of a hamburger shop vibe here than at Bar Ume, but it’s still far from an austere, in-and-out burger joint. Part of that is down to the selection of Japanese booze (a concise version of what is served in Surry Hills) and the shop’s slick fit-out by Amber Road Design.

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Updated: August 3rd, 2021

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