How Aussie Are They? Your Guide To Homes Away From Home While Travelling Abroad

23 March 2015

We all miss friends and family while travelling, but for many Australians homesickness also means developing cravings for a Tim Tam Slam, a saucy meat pie or a stiff pour of Bundaberg Rum.

Thankfully, there are places around the world (sometimes in the most unexpected cities) where Aussies can find a slice of home amongst the foreign. Unfortunately, some such establishments advertising themselves as 'quintessentially Australian' are peddling downright balderdash.

Step into one of these and you'll wind up whispering Dorothy's mantra, "There's no place like home," to yourself. To save you the torment, we've conducted a serious investigation into Aussie-inspired places around the world asking one all-encompassing question: How Aussie are they?

 This lad knows where to find the Aussie atmosphere anywhere in the world (image: Getty)

Walkabout Pub

United Kingdom

There's rarely a populous city in England, Wales or Scotland where you won't find a Walkabout pub to call home. This Australian-themed chain works hard to establish authenticity with its sporting decorations and menu.

A few highlights of the latter include the Vegemite Flat Bread, Steak Sandwich, Chicken Parmie and Pavlova on the food side; and Bundaberg Rum, Coopers Pale Ale, Little Creatures and Fat Yak on the drinks menu. There's also VB, but we could all do without that.

Walkabout also has an enormous sporting and party culture. If you're looking for the rambunctious crowds of home, you've found the right place. It's only shortcoming is focusing too much on the rugged, outback side of Australia – we like button ups and fine wine just as much as pluggers and a stubby.

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 The brews of home at Walkabout (image: @WalkieSheffield)

Outback Steakhouse

United States

Tacky is the perfect adjective for Outback Steakhouse. This restaurant chain in the US has all the decorations, but tries way too hard to appear Australian. The only flimsy connection it has with Down Under is its horrible naming convention for meals, such as Walkabout Soup, Gold Coast Coconut Shrimp and Alice Springs Chicken.

You'll hear the occasional Aussie accent from waitstaff. However, the external facade quickly crumbles when you realise the ambience of the place is identical to every other American restaurant chain.

The Aussie Rum Punch even has the audacity to only include Malibu and Mount Gay Rum! The quality of food isn't bad though.

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 You're a knucklehead if you think a Blooming Onion is Australian (image: Getty)

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Caffeine

Shanghai, China

Caffeine dedicates its time and efforts to replicating the Melbourne coffee culture in Shanghai. How close does it get? There's a definite feeling of Australia from the Chinese-Australian duo who opened the coffee shop, and the lattes and flat whites go a long way towards making travellers reminisce of home among the gumtrees.

However, although the coffees are strictly Australian, the beans used to make them aren't as authentic. The cafe decor is also a mixture of Aussie inspirations and the urban styles of the Danshui Lu neighbourhood in Shanghai.

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 Grab an authentic Flat White at Caffeine (image: Getty)

Coco's Outback

Amsterdam, the Netherlands

This inner-city bar's Aussie appeal comes mainly from its healthy selection of drinks, a commitment to the ocha style (especially on Australia Day) and a lack of other Aussie establishments in surrounding countries.

It's a bit of an amalgamation of various cultures, showing all the NFL Games from America and holding Thailand-inspired full moon parties. Fortunately there's room in the fridges for some VB and Coopers, and space along the top shelf for bottles of Bundaberg Rum.

You can also order up Kangaroo steak for dinner, but we're not sold on the grasshopper topping.

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 Coco's Outback has an underground feel. Aussie miners perhaps? (image: Coco's Outback)

Bronzed Aussie

Los Angeles, USA

With a name like the Bronzed Aussie, this LA coffee shop puts its authenticity on the line before you even step inside. Fortunately for the Aussie gal behind the brand, the Bronzed Aussie rarely strays far from its lamington and sausage roll roots.

The menu is comprised of quality Australian treats such as pies, fish and chips and ANZAC biscuits, while the coffee selection includes home-grown favourites like a Flat White and Long Black (a Southern Cross take on the American favourite).

Visit the Bronzed Aussie and you'll almost feel as if you're back in your home town stopping off at your street-corner coffee shop.

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Ben Stower

I love the kind of travelling that is one part strategic planning and two parts spontaneous adventure. Whether I'm exploring my local city or a small town in the middle of nowhere, I'm always hoping to find something no one else has discovered.