Mojo’s Burger and Salt & Pepper Fried Squid at Mojo’s Restaurant, Bunbury

I perused the menu and decided to go for the burger this place had the confidence to put its name to: Mojo’s Burger a ‘local beef patty, lettuce, cucumber, aioli, pickled cucumber’ with a side of ‘hand cut chips’ for $22. 

The phrase ‘hand cut chips’ caught my attention.

Is the specific method utilised to arrive at chips, ‘cut’ chips, from the humble potato a feature worth denouncing in the modern world?

My knowledge on chip cutting methods is admittedly limited. For all I know, there exists a plethora of methods, a range of ways, to achieve the chip. Is ‘hand cut’ a preferred approach? Can a subject expert chip in? At the very least, I suppose ‘hand cut’ is an acceptable method. 

I mean in the alternative there are certainly a million more questionable or downright unacceptable methods. 

Foot cut chips—eww. 

Uncut chips—is an uncut chip a mere potato? 

Santa Claus-cut chips—because this would be an indication of something amiss in the Northpole. It would only birth a snowstorm of questions. Why would Santa have been relegated to the relatively menial task of splitting potatoes, whether by hand or not? Elves revolting? Issues with upper-management? Misaligned organisational goals and priorities? World happiness through gift-giving decried as an outcome unachievable? Percentage of ‘believers’ at an all time low? Boy, I could go on. You get the picture. Santa Claus-cut chips would be all manner of outrageous.

For simplicity’s sake, I’ll assume Mojo’s menu drew attention to the hand cut aspect to rebut, from the outset, any presumption of these being machine cut chips. Because machine cut—while wonderfully engineered for efficiency, and a feat from that point of view—is rather unpreferred from a middle-class dining perspective. I refer of course to connotations, rife attitudes within the populace, that serving up cookie-cutter chips means cheaper, boring and flavourless, lowbrow. Should we really be judging chips on how they are cut? 

While this spiel possibly suggests that I hold some passion about the matter, I can confirm that I do. Where the method of chip cutting is concerned that passion is my declaring ambivalence. I’ll happily stomach all and any of the acceptable methods. 

Mankind advances on many fronts. Indiscriminate and far-reaching are the impacts of technology.  It’s commendable. Technology even impacts the all-important Realm of Potato Chips—now this, I wouldn’t have thunk. There’s comfort also in knowing that the only thing being completely uprooted by technology as far as potato chips are concerned are potatoes. Clearly not the practice of cutting chips by hand.

Machine cut or hand cut, dissected potatoes better be worth their salt. 

Chips just better be bloody tasty. 

And so, the burger arrived looking hot and the perfect plate for a cold evening. 

Here we have the stabbed beast and the decidedly hand cut chips. 

The bun was a shiny, sesame seed one. Lovely and soft, toast marks apparent. Unlike the last burger named after its joint I had, this bun was as it should be: fresh and unstale. 

Inside was a heap of meat, sauce, and onions. I realise on writing this now that the lettuce and tomato this was stated to have were non-existent. Dammit, meat-heavy I expressed at the time but it hadn’t registered back to their menu. Oh well. It came with a large patty and crispy bacon. (Bacon for brekky and for dinner was making the day amazing.)

The thick meat patty held its juices. Together with the layered on bacon, and a sizeable portion of very wilted down, fried barbeque-flavoured onions, it was a substantial lot. Joyous to bite through. Flavours of the meaty heap jumped out, violently hitting the palate with enthusiasm and chutzpah. Yum. 

The burger​ was so good. It could have done with the salad elements.

The hand cut chips were good. Better than those I’ve had of late. Perhaps I need to revisit the subject. Perhaps hand cut connotes more than the method: a description of the layer of care applied, the time spent on sculpting perfection… 

We had the ‘salt and pepper spiced squid’ with tartar sauce, $16, as a shareplate. The soft, lightly-battered deep-fried squid tasted delicious. They were the type you’d order a stackload of, munch on, then wonder where it’d all disappeared to. Dipped in the sauce, the squid was a winner.

Taste verdict Great burger. One of the best ones I’ve had this year. Great hand cut chips. Great squid. 


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