Post recent renovations it no longer feels like a pub at all but rather someone's house - where the interiors are low-key but inviting, and where its warmth on a clear winter's day is more welcoming than the blue but cold skies outside.
|Devil's Corner pinot noir and mulled cider at The Duck Inn, Rose Street, Chippendale|
Around the restaurant side, especially closer to the windows where we've scored a table, it feels like a sunroom with views out into the outdoor seating (or backyard).
It's a great place for a group to sit, drink and catch up noisily, which is what most tables seemed to be doing. A mug of spicy mulled cider is made for winter days like this, but I'm finding red wine to be my long-haul drink of choice these days.
|Charcuterie board with pancetta, Danish salami, jamon, cornichons, |
onion jam and sourdough
The charcuterie board was particularly generous with toasted sourdough but the jamon was cut too thick while the salami was a little pedestrian. The ample cornichons, onion jam and seeded mustard kept things interesting.
|Roast pumpkin salad with rocket, goat's cheese, toffee walnuts and honey balsamic|
|Roasted eggplant ravioli with sage butter, Castel Blue and walnut crumbs|
Looking nothing like a pub meal, the fresh ravioli filled with roasted eggplant was strewn with greens, pumpkin and bits of blue cheese. The pasta was lovely and al dente although the filling could have had a better impact with more seasoning.
|Lamb and rosemary sausage with creamy mash, capsicum marmalata and minted jus|
|Posh chicken and truffle pie with creamy mash, pea puree and dark ale jus|
Being a bit of a pastry fiend, I'm not sure deconstructed pies are my cup of tea but I can see the appeal for the carb-conscious (mash aside).
|Roast lamb shoulder, creamy mash, carrot and vanilla puree, turnip fritter, sauteed|
cavalo nero with peas and bacon, ale jus
Not only was the meltingly soft lamb gorgeously rich, the dish included the creamy mash, a flavoursome ale jus and vegetables turned somewhat naughty; that is, deep fried into a turnip fritter and tastily cooked with bacon.
|Dessert platter: chocolate brownie with clotted cream and raspberry sauce |
and vanilla creme brulee
The creme brulee was easily the best I've had all year. A cracking toffee top covered a vanilla-fragrant custard that was just textbook in flavour and texture - heaven in a ramekin.
We lingered over glasses of wine and schooners of cider in the restaurant until families and kids started to arrive for their early dinner bookings. We'd popped in for lunch and almost made it to dinner, which is a good sign that The Duck Inn could easily become my new second home.