After successfully slinging burgers in a food truck for one year, Gang Gang will open their brick-and-mortar eatery next month, boasting a brunch menu consisting of more than just good eats in brioche buns.
GANG GANG to debut an all-day deli on Unley Road
“The truck didn’t allow us to do too many things at once, and then really quickly it became a burger truck,” says co-owner and operator of GANG GANG, Nina Hadinata.
“We couldn’t make it burgers, tacos and rice bowls – what we originally envisioned GANG GANG to be.
“But now with this space, we’ve got the freedom to add to that menu.”
Nina and co-partner Morgen Wynn unveiled the original iteration of GANG GANG in January 2018: a pop-up food stall selling takeaway Asian-inspired comfort food.
On their first day of operation at the Adelaide Central Markets they cooked what are now hot-ticket items, like the Cardi B chicken burger or the Tinie Tempah vegan burger, from a small electric grill.
“We were so happy that day because we sold 40 burgers, if that,” says Nina.
“But now we’ve got the food truck and we’re selling thousands.”
After six big months of doing pop-ups, selling burgers and salads, GANG GANG unveiled Trailer Swift – their now instantly recognisable banana-yellow food trailer – which took their eatery to Tasting Australia, Porchland and other music and food festivals.
They peddled flavourful street food consisting of burgers, sides and chips, which earned them a reputation as a go-to food truck with devout followers.
“We have people that followed us around, [and] they know their names and will message us saying ‘Where are you’,” laughs Morgen.
Coinciding with the one-year truck-iversary, and almost a full 12 months after they announced to us they’d settle down, Morgen and Nina have revealed the next step to GANG GANG’s meteoric rise: an all-day deli blending Asian and American cuisine on Unley Road.
“We’re still going to offer our burgers, but we’re also doing a brunch-style menu, which will be a little bit different,” says Nina.
“It’ll be mostly Asian inspired, because our burgers started as Asian inspired, but then we will put on your American classics,” she adds.
GANG GANG’s all-day deli is roughly 150sqm of sun-lit space on Unley Road, which will cater to 20-seated patrons, inside and out. It will be open mid-November and is designed to be a “one-stop super shop.”
CityMag visited Morgen and Nina as the deli was on the cusp of completion.
The menu will include the brand’s juicy burgers and sides, and more meals with the trademark blend of two ostensibly different cultures: Indonesia and Los Angeles.
Knockout dishes include authentic Los Angeles tacos and an American soul food staple, chicken and waffles, which nod to Nina’s previous years living in California.
“One of my favourite things about living in Los Angeles was the food and the aesthetic of everything,” says Nina.
“There’s something very beautiful about the clean lines and palm trees, but it’s still old school, and I guess it’s just got a special place in my heart that I wanted to bring through to GANG GANG.”
The seasonal Monday night dish, nasi campur, which will be new at the deli is an homage Nina’s Indonesian heritage – as is a culinary leaning towards pickling, sambal and chilli.
Nasi campur is a traditional Indonesian meal consisting of rice with an assortment of fresh and sautéed condiments.
“But with the Monday nights we’ll rotate it, so one night it might be a ramen night or a nasi campur night, or a Meatless Monday fixture, but it will all be stemming from things that we actually love,” adds Nina.
There will be a to-go fridge serving up sandwiches, salads and jaffles, plus sweet treats made from their family’s secret recipes.
Morgen will be bringing her ancestry into the mix by offering her grandma’s homemade mini-scones and her mum’s cakes. There will be four new chilli sauces and pour-your-own soda beverages made in-house too.
“I’ve been working with some dragon-fruit pours, berries, and I’ve been pureeing and boiling some fruits and so when they pour on top of a mineral water they turn into a soda,” says Morgen.
“Our stuff is mostly home-made, and you can taste that it’s got some love in it.”
Interiors will feature rattan chairs and pendant lights, plus greenery sourced from the local StoneCrop Plants & Accessories.
“We’ve gone ham on the plants,” says Morgen.
Iconic colours found in GANG GANG’s food – greens, pinks and yellows – inspired the fit-out’s colour pallet.
An outside courtyard area will feature timber decking, native Indonesian plants and a large palm tree; and will primarily be used as a takeaway space.
“But we really encourage people to come, bring your gang, share your food together, have a good time in our space,” emphasises Morgen.
“GANG GANG is pretty much going to be our second home now, and like how we cook for our family, we want people to have that same experience.”
Nina and Morgen wanted the tiger illustration because big cats are emblazoned at the front of Balinese homes to ward off danger.
“We thought because this is our first home we would put a tiger on the wall,” says Nina.
“It’s there to protect us and our gang.”
The GANG GANG team assures us Trailer Swift will continue to roam as usual, and will be parked and serving burgers at Handpicked Festival, Cheese Festival and other locations.