It was not that long ago that Macquarie Park was a forgotten city of Sydney. Being a Macquarie Uni student, I’ve seen the transformation from being a place that literally had nothing to look forward to, to becoming an upcoming location with developments happening at every corner. With international brands such as Forever21 and H&M choosing it as their debut location to enter Sydney’s fashion market, they have brought many visitors to the area and it is without a doubt that KIN By Us has capitalised on its recent popularity. The marketing student in me commends Kin By Us for their use of puns on the menu, as well as their presentation skillls — I personally can’t go a day without seeing an Instagram post of one of their dishes in my newsfeed.
KIN By Us delivers a ‘café style menu with Asian touches’ as Uel personally told me. That name may sound familiar as Uel and Shannelle were newlyweds on My Kitchen Rules in last year’s season. Taking the skills and knowledge they garnered from their experience on the show, KIN By Us brings their Indonesian and Singaporean heritage together into the café; there is a genuine welcoming and familial ambiance evident through the open kitchen and communal tables.
Being one of the warmer days of autumn we began with the Coconut Cold Brew beverage, which started with a fresh aroma whilst having a smooth coconut taste with hints of cold brew coffee coming at the end of every sip. This was just what we needed for a refreshing and light start to the meal.
The Waffle Belly ($17), which comprised of a potato waffle was surprisingly light and fluffy, totally exceeding my expectations. The pork belly was very tender with an intense caramelised sweet soy flavour. Just as Beyoncé and Jay Z belong together, so do Pork and Waffles. It was a nice spin on the classic Chicken and Waffles combo which I particularly enjoyed. The sautéed mushrooms and cabbage added not only freshness to the dish but also worked well with the heaviness of the pork belly.
The Miso Yummy ($17) dish had perfectly cooked salmon which I know for a fact, is difficult to achieve (not from experience or anything…). The sweet flaky flesh had a mild hint of miso, which I would have preferred slightly stronger. However, like how Tinashe loves to get her ‘2 On’, as do I…with 2 ONsen eggs that is. These eggs were fairly consistent throughout all the dishes and the yolk was creamy rather than runny, which gave the dish a touch of richness. The yolk was a perfect component that brought all the flavours together in harmony. This was my personal favourite, full of textual bites from the smooth egg, the flaky salmon and the crunch of the sourdough.
I really only ordered the Sub-Marine ($18) dish because I heart anything soft shell crab so it was a must in my eyes. The soft shell crab had naturally sweet flesh that was encased in a crunchy exterior from the tempura batter. The spice paste had enough heat to give a little kick at the end of every bite. The buttery brioche really helped cut through the heat and was great to scoop up any leftover spice paste that dropped on the plate.
The Snap Crackle Plop ($10) is Uel’s personal favourite, and I can see why. It reminded me so much of a dish that my mum makes at home so it really brought out the ‘family’ aspect of KIN to the experience. The consistency of each grain made the dish surprisingly light, but it also aided in creating a developing flavourful experience. The rice was pouring with flavour, beginning with an intense meaty taste from the chicken stock and was followed closely with notes of ginger and garlic that lingered at the end. The peas were like pops of sweetness that added to the flavour. The chicken skin really brought the crunch the dish needed and the egg once again brought not only moisture but a creamy richness that made this dish a memorable one.
After devouring four dishes, I must say that where KIN By Us excel is not only in high quality dishes but in quick, friendly and attentive service with a familial ambiance that runs throughout the entire café. With so many cafés popping up in Sydney’s food scene, KIN By Us delivers a mixture of home style cooking of Asian favourites, whilst re-imagining them with modern twists. With its prime location, uni breaks are now an easy excuse for me to visit so frequently.
2 Saunders Close, Macquarie Park NSW
Phone: 0412 603 868
Web: kinbyus.com Opening hours: Monday – Saturday 7am – 3pm but closed on Sundays
I Ate My Way Through dined as guests of Kin By Us