By the time I reached Queenstown, The Fergburger had reached an almost fabled status in my head. I had first heard about these supposedly unparalleled burgers from Queenstown eight months previously from my friend Abi – fellow traveller and burger connoisseur. She had travelled through NZ just before coming to Melbourne and when I had asked her about her trip, the Fergburger was included in her list of highlights. In fairness, if you speak to anyone who has been to or lives in New Zealand you do tend to get asked whether you have been to Queenstown and tried a Fergburger.
There was a queue winding down Shotover Street from the front doors of Fergburger almost 24hrs a day everyday while I was in Queenstown and I’m pretty sure this is a regular occurrence. I was so excited to have one however, I decided I would wait until my return visit to Queenstown a few days later. When we arrived in Queenstown the first time it was only for a night out for drinks and goodbyes to our Stray Bus with Nipper as our captain. Once you reach Queenstown, the buses tend to change hands and you lose/pick up new travellers as people stay on in Queenstown to fill their boots with adrenaline sports or explore the Deep South, as I did. As dinner was already sorted for that evening and we had to leave at a rather indecent hour in the morning after an evening out and too early for a burger for me I held off until I could properly savour the meal.
It was decided that we would test the wares before we went to see the final Hunger Games film – Mockingjay. It was a Monday evening and the queue was already four shops deep. You have two choices, you can call in your order for pick up or you can wait in the queue. I think either option takes around the same amount of time. We ended up calling in our order after a bit of standing but I think the wait time was the same, except we didn’t have to stand in the queue. We just sat basking in the sun on the benches waiting hungrily to be called. 45 minutes passed and our number was up. We picked up our order at the little window, our taste buds salivating from the smell and thought of what was packaged up in the large brown bag Jen held in her arms and headed down to the waterfront where we happily settled ourselves down in a corner and dished out the goods.
I chose the “Tropical Swine”. A perfectly grilled, not overdone, juicy 100% NZ beef burger in a toasted sesame seed bun topped with streaky bacon, pineapple, lettuce, tomato, red onion, aioli and tomato relish. There is also supposed to be cheddar cheese but I decided to switch mine to Brie. It was an excellent choice if I do say so myself. There were about eight of us and between us we tested a good selection of the menu and I can hands down say that everything was delectably scrumptious, including their fries which despite being stuffed we still managed to polish off. No one wanted to leave left overs. The Fergburger lived up to all expectations which is pretty impressive because they were pretty high. So now if anyone asks me what to do in New Zealand, my trip highlights or even where one can find a delectable burger my thoughts roam over to the burger shop on Shotover street in Queenstown to a little place called Fergburger having forever raised the bar on any future burgers to come.