Chippendale is where to go when you’ve got the urge for carnivorous thrills. This backstreet restaurant feels like a descendent of Munich’s famous beer halls mixed with a Canadian lumberjack’s mess – it’s all those long timber tables, the giant smoker in the open kitchen, and metal serving trays laden with sausages. In a city that reveres the Bunnings snag on white bread, head chef Luke Powell is creating a breakaway sect devoted to his roster of housemade sausages. Maybe on your visit it’ll be a mild, chubby chorizo that’s so soft and juicy that when you cut into it the fragrant garlic and smoked paprika oil flows out onto the platter. You’re going to need the sharpness of the side of house-made mustard to bring you back from the brink of rich porky rapture.
Are you the sort of person who can go three courses of meat without your heart hurting? Welcome to Nirvana, friend, where you can prime yourself with cold cuts; coppa, salami, or mortadella. Heck, they even make it spreadable, with a chicken liver pate and a bouncy ’nduja, which is a heart stopping mix of pork belly and fat with paprika and chilli, fermented in natural casings on site.
A person with self-control could make a satisfying meal out of ’nduja on two thick, malty slices of bread, mustard, butter, olives and a pickled jalapeno, but fortune favours the greedy here, because waiting in the wings is Sydney’s best smoked chicken, joined on the stage by a mash and gravy that that you’ll think about weekly from here on in.
Even a mountain lion needs to chew a little grass for digestive purposes, but a more delicious foil to all this protein is long, tender asparagus spears wearing a cummerbund of sauce gribiche (imagine a boiled egg tartare). And the award for most ingenious and delicious brassica disguise goes to the Brussels sprouts. Sydney being what it is, you were expecting them all fried and golden, weren’t you? Here Powell shreds them into the finest ribbons, adds chewy slices of smoked mushroom, a blizzard of parmesan and a fried egg. Mix it all together and you’ve got a distant cousin to a Caesar salad.
At this point you might like to add a spicy jalapeno Margarita, or a Smoked Toronto to the mix, which is a politely rugged mix of rye, Fernet Branca and smoked maple syrup. Both will help break up this all-in meat fest. An eight-buck pale ale from local brewers Grifter is also a good play.
Even though you know from experience that the pudding chômeur will push you over the edge to full blown glutton’s regret, an order of the baked sponge soaked in caramelised maple syrup topped with vanilla ice cream is non-negotiable. This intensely sweet dessert is part of the full LP’s experience, which is why it’s been on the menu for four straight years.
Not every restaurant in Sydney warrants its own range of merch, but this is exactly the sort of place that people love so fiercely that they want to emblazon their devotion across their shirt, hat or anywhere you can sew a patch. True devotees also order LP’s sausage and curried eggs for breakfast at A1 Canteen in Chippendale. Those same people will be first through the doors of Powell’s new pizza parlour, Bella Brutta, where their wood-fired pies will be topped with LP’s small goods. It’s a very good time to be a carnivore.