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Mad Menu at The Soda Factory

Home > Sydney > Bars | Food and Wine | Nightlife
by Sarah Han (subscribe)
Lover of carbs, traveling, art & naps. Food & travel blog at sarahversuscarbs.com.
Published August 4th 2013
Mad and marvellous
Feast on a Don Draper Dog while listening to cool, jazzy tunes at The Soda Factory every Thursday evening. Firstly though, keep in mind The Soda Factory is a struggle to find unless you know that it's actually through a fake fridge door at Bossy's Hot Dogs. Look out for a pretty girl in a cute red outfit and retro roller skates.

The Soda Factory now has a Mad Men themed menu every Thursday evening, accompanied by live swing, jazz and rockabilly. Cocktails are $12 which is excellent value. On all other nights the cocktails are between $17 and $20. The Mad Men cocktails are all lemon based which pleases me, as I always prefer sour cocktails over sweet ones.

tom collins, soda factory cocktail
A Sterling Tom Collins

We try the Sterling Tom Collins first, which is like an alcoholic lemonade. The gin-based cocktail isn't too sweet and goes down a treat with the New York style fare.

mac cheese, soda factory menu
Madmac & cheese

The Madmac & cheese ($5) sampler is served with a lovely cheesy sauce. In my humble opinion the sauce could be cheesier, but I'm known to love my cheese. Sprinkled with paprika, it's great if you're craving some hearty comfort food.

sidecar, soda factory cocktail
Don Draper's Sidecar

Don Draper's Sidecar is a cocktail made with brandy, lemon juice, and orange liqueur. It's on the sweeter side, especially with the sugar rim. I enjoy the way the sugar rim adds a bit of texture to the beverage.

hot dog, soda factory hot dog, soda factory menu
The Don Draper Dog

The Don Draper Dog ($10) is the winner in our eyes. It's a simple hot dog with melted cheese, mustard, ketchup, Spanish onion and a sprinkle of herbs on a soft hot dog roll. It's pretty much the perfect dog.

french 75, soda factory cocktail
Joan's French 75

We also try a bubbly cocktail called the Joan's French 75. Containing gin, sparkling wine, lemon juice, sugar and a maraschino cherry floating at the bottom, this cocktail is playful and delicious.

hot dog, soda factory hot dog, soda factory menu
The Johnny Drama

We also get to try the Johnny Drama (the favourite on their regular menu) which uses the same sausage as the Draper Dog but is wrapped in bacon, then topped with avocado, sour cream and tomato salsa. It's a full-on hot dog with an on-trend Mexicana twist, but we still prefer the simplicity of the Don Draper. There's an extensive list of gourmet hot dogs on their regular menu, all priced at a reasonable 10 bucks.

sub, meat sub, meatball sub, soda factory sub
Manhattan meatball sub

The Manhattan Meatball Sub ($10) is laden with your choice of napolitana sauce or cheese sauce. The bread is a bit crustier than the hot dog roll, which I'm a fan of. And the napolitana sauce is wonderfully rich and tomatoey.

meatballs, soda factory meatballs, naked balls
Naked balls

If you want to avoid carbs, go for the Naked Balls ($8). Again you can pick between the napolitana or cheese sauce. We sample a meatball each with the two sauces (but you'd normally get four naked balls in one serving). Packed with flavour and doused with loads of sauce, I enjoy these meaty balls very much.

chilli fries, soda factory fries
Chilli cheese fries

But what I enjoy even more are the chilli cheese fries ($7). The American orange cheddar sauce is so wrong that it's right. I could happily eat a big bucket of these fries.


The Soda Factory space is industrial, hemmed in by textured walls hunt with pages of a pin up calendar. Rusty bronzes and light blues are interspersed with raw, wooden furnishings. Even the bathroom is cleverly designed with buckets for sinks and outdoor taps.



Soda Factory also has other awesomely themed evenings. I've been on a Tuesday for dollar dogs, which I also recommend.



Note: We dined as guests of Soda Factory to sample the Mad Menu. As such, most of the dishes were smaller or shared.
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*Sarah Han was invited as a guest
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Why? Meatballs, hot dogs, subs and cocktails
When: Thursday nights
Phone: 8096 9120
Where: 16 Wentworth Ave, Surry Hills
Cost: $12 for cocktails and $5-10 for food dishes
Your Comment
You paint this place delicious! But I'm a vego so it doesn't seem there is too much in the way of food - the mac looks good though and the chips. The cocktails - yummo!
by Katy Holliday (score: 3|1133) 2143 days ago
Looks really interesting, and the fact it is approached through a secret door makes it even more intriguing
by Shannon Meyerkort (score: 3|1794) 2143 days ago
no comment on the cocktals. The food in small servings (by the look of it), are interesting, as you can taste sevral items, without getting too full.
by inero (score: 2|106) 2143 days ago
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