New Yorkers are not afraid of a long line to get food. There's basically a perpetual queue outside of certain famous old school pizza places, and you can still spot a line of people waiting for cronuts outside of Dominique Ansel's bakery on certain days. But the latest long line sparked by a pastry isn't about an over-the-top milkshake or a new Franken-pastry, it's thanks to an Australian sausage roll.
The rolls are courtesy of Bourke Street Bakery, a beloved cafe and bakery that has 11 locations in Sydney that recently opened their first outpost in New York City. They're flakey, buttery, croissant-like pastry wrapped around juicy sausage in a few different flavors, including lamb and harissa and pork and fennel. In the little over a week since they've opened, owners Paul Allam and Jessica Grynberg have been overwhelmed by the response. A line of people have formed around the block every morning since they opened, with homesick Australians and pastry afficianados seeking out the sausage rolls and the menu's other treats. "I underestimated," Allam says. "I didn't realize there were so many people in the Australian community. We didn't have enough, which is a great problem to have."
We have made more pastry! So glad you are all trying the sausage roll finally. We have more coming out at 11am tomorrow… see you for lunch ??#bourkestreetbakerynyc ? @t_rexaurus
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Since opening day, they've been adjusting and steadily upping the number of rolls they produce to satisfy demand, and making sure that no matter how long the line stretches, it moves quickly. The lamb is impoorted from Australia, since Allam found that American lamb didn't have the same robust flavor as the meat in Australia, but otherwise, the translation process from baking in Australia to a New York kitchen has been fairly smooth.
The menu also includes a variety of sandwiches on sourdough bread made from flour that they mill on the Bourke Street premises, as well as an array of mini tarts, like lime curd with coconut meringue that tastes like the ideal personal-sized key lime pie, and ginger creme brulee that has a gentle spice to it. The lime curd number is in response to the produce available on this side of the world, where Allam and Grynberg found that limes are much better and easily obtained—part of what they're hoping to do with the New York location is work with seasonal changes and do some experimenting with the menu. Some of the adjustment to American tastes has more to do with naming than anything—one very delicious loaf of sourdough includes "dried plums" because many Americans have bad associations with prunes.
That doesn't mean that they aren't also going to be rolling out many of the cult favorite treats from their other locations, like the Lamingtons, just that they're going to take their time about it. "Everything is made from scratch, and takes time, so we can't ramp it up just instantly," Grynberg said. "There's a long list we have to pull from." And then New Yorkers will have even more Australian favorites to line up for.
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