Kusuka Cafe, Haymarket Review

Eat, Restaurants, Sydney / 1 May 2018

Drinks topped with slices of cake, Mi-Goreng, and Fruit Loops. Kusuka proves childlike insanity is delicious.

A pretty in pink decor, with scones and cakes on display, Kusuka Cafe is no ordinary Haymarket eatery. An eccentric balance of Indonesian street food and dishes worthy of dominating your Instagram feed, Kusuka is a uniquely affordable Sydney experience.
Nestled away down the quieter end of Sussex Street, this intimate hole-in-the-wall eatery encapsulates everything that is exciting about eating in the age of social media. A refined pink aesthetic is coupled with beautifully presented cuisine and immaculately warm service, that rivals that found at Sydney’s finest eateries.
Looks are deceiving on the drinks menu. The Disco Princess ($9) is a DIY booze free cocktail that changes colour before your eyes, creating an icy twist on a blueberry lolly. Infused with a secret glitter substance, the purple Genesis ($12) bottle is reminiscent of a childhood spent sucking on never-ending Sunnyboys.
If you are heading to Kusuka early, then the brunch menu offers a variety of twists on the usual morning favourites. The Hello Me Bowl ($16.50) is a fresh unity of haloumi, grilled mushrooms and garden vegetables united by a soy sauce dressing.
There is so much on the menu, that sharing in Kusuka’s many delights is recommended. Fries smothered in a drooling cheesy sauce with specks of sausage and chorizo, the Three Brothers ($10) is ideal for sharing. Meanwhile the Mo-To ($8.50) is a stunning contradiction. The side dish of tofu balances a crusty shall with a fluffy centre, drizzled in fragrant chilli matah suace.
Mi-Goreng and late-night university assignments go hand in hand. However, you’ll wish the SuperBowl ($20) was around during your tertiary years. The sizeable bowl of spicy noodles is covered with an assortment of toppings to settle your stomach, including: strips of pork belly, corned beef, corn kernels, a cheesy drool and sautéed greens (for good measure).
Served on black grill plates, the Martabak ($12.50) is fried pancake perfection. Filled with egg, cheese and beef, the pastry encasement is topped with gooey cheese and served with a hot chilli-sauce side. Also, served with chilli and segments of fresh pineapple, the plump pork belly slices on the PB Playground ($14) are crispy skinned, yet succulently mouth-watering.
Tempt yourself with one of the many sweet treats on the drinks and eats menus. The pink latte ($4.50 reg), is a subtle stomach settler. Meanwhile the fragrantly sweet green milk tea, Wondermelon ($8.50), comes served with a sponge cake on top. Yes, an edible cake.
Kopi Pancake
Don’t leave Kusuka without sampling the Kopi Pancake. Draped beneath a palm sugar syrup, three peanut butter and coffee infused pancakes are topped with a scoop of ice-cream, to create a memorable and salivating conclusion to the Kusuka experience.
Translating to “I like” in Indonesian, Kusuka’s simple name certainly does it justice. Although the dishes are zany and unbelievable on paper, the eatery makes good on its intention to dazzle diners. Whether you are passing by for a sweet treat, or craving a stomach filler, Kusuka has something for everyone.
Kusuka Cafe
12/339 Sussex St
Open: Mon-Sat 11am-9.30pm