So back in August, during Wellington on a Plate, I had made it my mission to get to as many Dine 2010 set lunches as possible, after not nabbing tickets to several of my top events (note to self, book earlier next time!). Duke Carvell's was one of the ones I wanted to try, mainly because I had heard good things about their Burger Wellington entry.
We went on a weekend on the cusp of lunch-time; everyone around us was eating eggs and brunch-y things I was majorly envious of.* But we were there for another reason: the $25 Dine 2010 set lunch and Duke's Ali Baa Baa Burger.
But all hesitations about eating a burger for my first meal of the day flew out the window when I was presented with this: pulled lamb shoulder, fried Kefalograviera cheese (yeah, I had to look it up too), beetroot hummus, pickled cucumber and a generous pile of rocket on warm Turkish bread.
It was interesting to see and taste each component on its own. The pulled lamb shoulder was a highlight, easily holding its own outside of the burger.
The marinated eggplant was bathed in a tzatziki-ish yoghurt sauce, and I got to eat most of them since E thinks he doesn't like eggplant (one day he'll see the light). They were cold and slimy (by nature I suppose), and I thought they could have used a bit more salt, but together with the cool creamy sauce I found myself gobbling them down pretty quickly.
As part of E's $25 set lunch we got this exquisitely presented affogato. I loved the little metal jug the espresso came in, the visible flecks of vanilla bean and the pool of Amaretto liqueur surrounding the ice cream.
We ceremoniously poured the hot coffee onto the ice cream, watching it melt into a sweet, strong, coffee-y liquid that I could drink gallons of if I knew it wasn't made mostly of ice cream, caffeine and alcohol. (Or maybe I would, anyway.)
Okay, the dessert:food photo ratio is getting a little out of control now. But it was really that beautiful, kind of reminiscent of one of those layered shots that are never a good idea the next morning, or those bottles of sand art you find at kitschy souvenir shops or kids make at summer camp.*
But my favourite part of all must have been these tiny
Duke Carvell's has been a favoured spot of mine for a little while now, both for weekend brunches and evening meals (generally served tapas-style, and 2 for 1 on Mondays!). And from looking at their website it seems they've added both these Wellington on a Plate features - the burger and the metze platter - to their usual lunch menu. Which is great news, because after writing up this post I'm ready for another one of those burgers.
Duke Carvell's Swan Lane Emporium
6 Swan Lane (off Cuba St, behind Floriditas)
(04) 385 2240
Open Mon-Fri: 12pm-late, Sat & Sun: 9am-late
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* and for good reason. They have some good brunch food.
** sand art?! Really?! It must be getting late. Must get some sleep....