Picklehead pickles

Author: Fiona Donnelly
Photography: Ben Hansen

Local ingredients and a tried-and-true formula make for magic in a jar.

WHO Director-photographer Mikey Hilburger and his wife, Lizzie, set up Picklehead Pickles in June 2012 using base recipes from Mikey's mother. They began small-scale commercial production of three types of pickle in 2015.

WHAT Lebanese cucumbers are cut into quarters lengthways, rather than sliced into rounds, for maximum crunch; cucumbers and dill are sourced locally via Rocklea Markets and from market gardens in Brisbane's outer suburbs; birdseye chillies come from a local Vietnamese grower. The pickles are made with an apple cider vinegar base and the Hilburgers also make Get Out Kraut, a naturally fermented sauerkraut.

WHY All Picklehead's principal ingredients are sourced from Queensland, no artificial additives are used and the pickles are also unpasteurised. "All three pickles have very different flavours," says Hilburger, "but they all share the same ingredients, just with different levels of garlic, chilli and peppercorn." He says chewing a Bronx Vanilla (New York diner slang for garlic) is a little like wrestling an Italian, but his New York-style dill pickles are better behaved. The Hot Patootie is perhaps more self-explanatory.

WHERE Picklehead Pickles supplies two-litre jars to local Brisbane craft-beer venues such as The Scratch in Milton and Paddington's Kettle & Tin, and they're also are on the menu at GOMA and Two Trees caf├ęs, and Che Asado restaurant in South Brisbane. For 500ml jars, check facebook.com/pickleheadpickles for stockists.

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