19 February 2024

Order nostalgia on a bun with a side of guilty pleasures at Wonderburger

| Lucy Ridge
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Wonderburger at Kingston

Wonderburger – because sometimes you need to satisfy your soul and your appetite. Photo: Lucy Ridge.

Sometimes, you get the urge for a really filthy meal. You know what I mean: something fried, something that’s definitely not healthy but so, so good for the soul. Wonderburger is your new guilty pleasure: slinging diner-style burgers, fried chicken, and soft-serve sundaes to the people of Kingston.

Things are simple at Wonderburger & Chickenette: the menu is compact, and your meal is served on a fast-food-style tray. It’s retro-tastic and evokes the feeling of fast food from when you were a kid. You know, back when it actually used to taste like something.

Co-owner Olek Czezowski, who is also an owner of Bellucci’s, explained they were aiming for a fun, retro feeling.

“We wanted to do something a bit different from Belluci’s and something a bit fun,” he told Region.

“We wanted to evoke that feeling of nostalgia.”

According to Olek, the menu is designed with the same care and consideration as the restaurant’s.

Wonderburger and fries on plastic tray

Wonderburger and fries. Photo: Supplied.

I visited with a friend and tried the eponymous Wonderburger, a six-piece fried chicken pack with chips and some onion rings. The burger bun is as soft as a cloud, and the pattie is juicy: the team makes them in-house with mince, ground to their particular specifications. There are other loaded burgers with extra bits and bobs on the menu for maximalists, but if you want your burger to taste like a burger, then the Wonderburger is the burger for you.

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The fried chicken is similarly top-notch. I’ve become more accustomed to Korean-style fried chicken these days (complete with a spicy, sticky sauce), but this Southern fried chicken was fabulous. Very juicy, bone-in, and crunchy as anything.

Burger and fried chicken with chips on two red trays, with a chocolate milkshake.

Wonderburger, fried chicken, chips and shake. Photo: Lucy Ridge.

The chips are good as well: nice and fat, with good crunch and a tasty seasoning. We had the chipotle mayo, but I kind of regretted not getting gravy (these are the kind of chips you definitely want to have with gravy).

Olek said they worked through four different versions of the seasoning mix on the chips before they perfected it. He reckons the chips are an absolute must when you visit Wonderburger.

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There’s even a soft serve machine! I leant into nostalgia with a chocolate hot fudge sundae, and yes, you’d better believe I dipped a chip in there.

Pickup counter at Wonderburger

Pickup counter at Wonderburger. Photo: Lucy Ridge.

The prices are not so nostalgic, but the food is better quality than what you’d get from the Golden Arches or a certain colonel, and you’re supporting a local business.

Would I go back? Here’s a confession: I already have. I knew I had to try the Nashville Hot Bird burger featuring spicy fried chicken.

Some things are so bad they’re just good.

Wonderburger is located at Shop 9/34 Eyre St, Kingston. They are open seven days a week from 11 am to 9 pm. Follow Wonderburger on Instagram.

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