It was a day when two Hollywood stars were in town - but all we wanted to do that mid afternoon was to sample the premium burgers from Miel Container.
This unassuming place, true to being like a part of a parked shipping container, is just off the intersection of Mary and Albert Streets in down town Brisbane. It was a rainy day, so things looked more cluttered at the front of this burger joint. Oh well, not just another burger joint! The servings are large like in the USA. The garnishing is fusion, well, like in good young Australia. The flavours and sauces are gratifying and meet expectations. The service is fast, no nonsense and allows you to dig in as soon as possible. There are different kinds of buns for variously named burgers.
Under a slow drip-drap, and amidst the excited screams for actors Chris and Tom around the corner, we were shown a more conducive seating table at the side of a lane, with scavenger birds patrolling for any scraps and scabs. A quick note - I reckon it is best to have takeaway from this place, free up the waiting customers and enjoy your burgers in the office or at the park.. Of course, only provided it is a beaut Queensland day, that perfect the next kind of conditions.
The young female Korean staff at the cash register did warn me about the spiciness of their Tandoori chicken thigh burger, but I was stuck with this mindset that a lot of traditional foods are watered down in spiciness and chilli levels to cater for the main stream in Australia. Oh well, she was not kidding, for SK found out that it was over the top in chilli hotness - and I agreed when I sampled a bite. Hot, hot, hot even with the cooling properties of cucumber, cheddar cheese and Tzatziki dipping sauce. Oh yes, this was served on a fruity Ciabatta bun.
I stuck to my Miso Smoked marinated pork belly burger, served with gherkins, red onions, tomato, garlic Aioli and lettuce. The oomph from Miel comes form the toppings, sides and flavourful things packed under the buns. Miel burgers are meant to eat with hands, do not really require sauces and are something like , why not cross leg as well? The key to Miel is that once you get that delicious spot, you forget about whatever rest you were concerned about. They have elevated themselves above our countless kid experience at fast food chains and moved us to adult heaven for burgers.
Korean BBQ Bulgogi Burger - how's that for an intermarriage between East and West? Maybe this dish had already been created near the US military bases at Yongsan in Seoul, but I don't really know. Placed on a Brioche bun, thin salted beef strips flavoured with hints of soy sauce and garlic Aioli are tucked with cheese, tomato, Spanish onions and Mesclun (that Provencal salad mix of selected young leaves).
Hark back to the Miel Original Burger if you find too many choices not easy to cope with.
Owner Johnny Na uses breads from French baker Sebastian Pisasale.
Oh yes, there also simpler burgers available - fish, chicken, veggie and beef. There is even an easy to follow guide to make up your own burger.
My take on the Miel Container is to relive teenage days, relish moments when we did not have to cook and a stop at a burger joint was only one step into a multi staged party for the night. I would not say Miel burgers are a snack, they are complete hand crafted meals in my eyes. I reckon it is also a cool place to hang around, for you could highly likely run into someone you know - or wish you had a chance to meet up with. Just make sure as well that your messy burger has not resulted in a slightly messy mouth when you want to impress your most beloved.
The Miel Container visited is located at 96 Mary Street, Brisbane, Queensland.
Opening hours are from 11am to 11pm on Fridays and from 11am to 10pm every other day except Sundays, when it is closed.
Contact +617 3229 4883