Tucked away Coffs burger joint gets Russell Crowe's vote
BREAKING all the basic rules of business this burger place is difficult to find, has no foot traffic, no parking out front and they don't advertise or market their brand. But they've got the food right. So right.
In the shop front of a former laundromat, Carney and Earl's is tucked away in Park Avenue Lane in the CBD. You'll have to follow your nose or the trail of street art to find it.
The brainchild of owner Drew Johnston, this burger place is on a simple mission "to serve authentic American-style burgers". And they are getting the popular vote. Last month we put the question out there on our Facebook page "Who does Coffs Coast's best burgers?" and Carney and Earls came out on top. They have great reviews on tripadvisor and even Hollywood royalty, Russell Crowe, has eaten here and tweeted his verdict.
With no formal background in the food or hospitality industry, Drew Johnston followed his heart and opened the door to Carney & Earls.
"I had travelled in Canada and America quite extensively and really enjoyed the burgers so decided to bring it back to Coffs," he said.
"There was no one else doing food like this so it was a niche market I decided to cater for.
"I had never worked in a restaurant or food business but had always been really passionate about food and my friends all encouraged me to go for it."
In just 18 months he has built a successful business.
"We have a really loyal following. We're not on a main street and difficult to find so we get business from locals telling others and championing us on social media."
The burgers are made from minced grass-fed angus beef and a slow cooking process ensures the meat remains juicy and tasty with no need for additives apart from a little sea-salt. All the burgers come with American style dill pickles that are made on the premises and the crinkle cut chips are a hot order. Whatever you do don't ask for a veggie burger; plain and simple, they don't do them.
"We get people from all over the world dropping in. Americans especially love our food because it's so authentic. Many say it's better than back home because of the fresh Aussie produce.
"Bacon and cheese burger is the epitome of what we do with the smoky bacon, smoked by Kev at the Bellingen Butchery - it's a real artisan product."
Hours: Wednesday to Sunday 11am to 2.30pm and Wednesday to Saturday 5pm to 8pm. Orders 6658 0032.
And if you were wondering, the gladiator ordered a small cheeseburger, chips and a coke.