Australia Day is January 26, and marks the day that the English First Fleet landed at Sydney Cove in 1788 and claimed the land for King George III – not independence from England. Australians typically celebrate with a picnic or trip to the beach, listening to the annual “Triple J Hottest 100 Countdown“; rankings are based on radio listeners’ votes for their favorite songs. Whatever you do, don’t “throw a shrimp on the barbie” (they’re called prawns, for starters!)
Australians typically eat an average of 12 meat pies per person per year; here are some Stateside places to sample that Oz staple and more, that are, in our opinion, “fair dinkum” (the real deal).
Pie Face – NYC several locations
Savory, flaky deliciousness! Try chicken and mushroom with the stack option (mashed potatoes, gravy and smashed peas); not a morning person? A “Kick My Arse” is an eye-opener of a coffee roast that will do the job.
Eight Mile Creek NYC – Soho
The Emu and barramundi entrees come highly recommended – even Italian visitors appreciate the bread and olive oil…date pie for dessert is unique, but possibly “overly sweet”.
Sheep Station – Brooklyn
The Shearer’s Burger here is a standout, but be sure to get it with all the fixin’s (with pineapple, egg and beet), the meat pie is “excellent”; make sure you top it with sauce (ketchup).
Thirsty Koala – Astoria, Queens
Astoria is traditionally a neighborhood of Greek immigrants, so this newly opened Aussie hangout stands out, with organic beef and fish sourced from Oz. Lamb lollies “rock” for appetizers, and folks say you can’t go wrong with the burger and pork chop, but it’s nice they have veggie and vegan options, too. Don’t miss: the “Triple T” dessert: Tiramisu made with Tim Tams, Australian chocolate-covered biscuits.
Tuck Shop (multiple locations)
Wash down sausage rolls and a variety of pies with Australian beers like Boag and Coopers. Save room for delish desserts names after well-known Aussies like Dame Edna and Peter Allen.
Australian Bakery Café – Marietta, GA
You can feel like you’re Down Under in the Deep South here: Authentic meat pies and sausage rolls headline, along with sandwiches with an Aussie twist. The frosted and German chocolate brownies are recommended for dessert.
Kangaroo & Kiwi Pub – Seattle, WA
Housed in a former library, this place is a touch of home for ex-pats from looking for a selection of beers on tap from Australia and New Zealand, along with some well-selected Stateside microbrews. Meat pies and other pub fare live up to their promise.
KO Pies – 2 locations in Boston, MA
KO Pies claims to be the first “Australian -inspired food shop in New England”, and their meat pies, sausage rolls are authentic.
Boomerang’s – Austin, TX
The Austin vibe seems perfect for a place like Boomerang’s – their pastry is perfect, and the fillings are tasty, a perfect antidote for a hangover. The chicken and mushroom pie, curry chicken pie and veggie thai curry pie are recommended.
Jaffles & Wraps – Portland, OR
This food cart specializes in “Jaffles”, the Aussie term for what is often referred to as panini or a hot pressed sandwich, with the fillings (sweet or savory) sealed inside 2 pieces of buttered bread. Hot coffee or cold brew Stumptown in bottles are the perfect accompaniment.