at Benjamin Browns
This is not for the weak. But don’t be fooled by its outrageously decadent exterior, because this monster freakshake ($16) is as tasty as it is good-looking. Served in a Nutella-rimmed Mason jar, the smooth blended banana-based beverage is smothered in clouds of whipped cream that thankfully aren’t too nauseating. Which comes as a surprise to our taste buds – because not only is the ’shake studded with chocolate wafers, sugar-coated cream crackers and mini pretzels, there are banana slices stacked atop a fudge brownie. Yeah, we told ya this isn’t for the weak.
at Clinton St Baking Company
This American diner’s famed for its fluffy pancakes, but reserve your appetite for the chocolate peanut butter ’shake ($10), a devilishly sinful concoction that you can opt to have spiked with bourbon. Don’t be deceived by its humble appearance, because once you plough past all that Chantilly cream, this chocolatey milkshake’s dangerously smooth and thick with not a trace of iciness. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup lovers will adore its nutty notes and chunks of peanuts, except this is a tinge more cloying than its candy equivalent. There are three other flavours to choose from, but avoid the salted caramel option: the folks here take the word ‘salted’ very seriously.
at OverEasy Orchard
What’s that peeking out from the surface of this banana and smoked maple syrup ’shake ($13)? Not a cherry or some other insipid garnish – it’s bacon. Bacon, guys. You’re meant to chase each slurp of this creamy confection with a bite of the chewy rasher, candied ’til it bears a similar sweetness to bak kwa, but not too sweet that it takes this drink into jelak territory. The flavours are otherwise on point with the drink’s American roots – you’ll find the banana, bacon, maple syrup and smoke combination in many Southern dishes – but we appreciate how this is the only milkshake on the list with a savoury element that isn’t salted caramel or pretzels.
at Privé Café
If you can’t decide between the five milkshakes on offer, here’s what to do: skip the Oreo and Espresso option ($10) – it’s on par with a Starbucks Frappuccino, only pricier – and get your hands on the Vanilla Nutella ($8), particularly if you’re addicted to the hazelnut spread. You’ll spot vanilla bean specks through its Mason jar body before you’re treated to heavy hits of Nutella, delivered in a smooth, creamy milkshake. To up the ante, Nutella is coated around the rim of the jar and the whole thing is topped with pretzels and chopped nuts. Be warned: you’ll need a friend to help you finish this.
at Wild Honey
Wild Honey’s milkshakes come in five no-frills (read: basic) flavours, and we recommend the chocolate one ($12) for hitting the sweet spot despite its steeper price tag – it’s certainly no freakshake, after all. Push your straw past its frothy top for a ’shake that’s smooth, not icy, with just the right amount of chocolate to take you to your happy place.
at Cake Spade
We swiped this right after lunch – and it’s a matcha! Although, we have to say that this epic and super rich green tea behemoth ($16.90) is a full meal unto itself. The cakeshake is loaded with crispy matcha-flavoured wafer sticks, cornflakes, tea biscuits, a slice of sponge cake with a creamy green tea filling, with a dollop of azuki beans crowning the whole dessert. Phew. And the ingredients are all perfectly stacked on top of one another with copious amounts of whipped cream in between. If all that sounds too cloying, think again – because beneath the massive layer of sweets, you’ll find a slightly bitter ’shake that’s perfectly blended to ensure a texture that’s neither too runny nor thick, and stays smooth right up ’til the last slurp.