So another new place this week (its that time of year). This time in the old Bull and Bear premises at the bottom of the Plimmer Steps.
Now a speakeasy called Hideaway by Vincent Lombino with food from Adam Rickett (formerly of Matterhorn and Pravda). Described as a red meat and whisky joint with classic throwback dishes revisited – a dive bar with class and style. You can read more here about their intentions and ethos.
On arrival, the black and red setting and schmoozy bar setup does shout speakeasy. There’s a choice of booths or tables, and the music fits the mood. It is a fairly big space though, so might feel a bit rattly until enough people are in there (although a grand place to tuck away to do a deal or undertake a rendezvous as they suggest on their info page). The only mis-step for me was still seeing a side-alley of pokie machines. No, no, no.
My opening Chamomile Honey Sour cocktail (chamomile infused Famous Grouse, with lemon juice, honey syrup and egg white) was worthy at $14 and pretty to boot. The cocktail list was interesting and different and I’d definitely slide by here again for another on my way to/from wherever.
To the food. The $12 beef burger delivered in red and white chequered paper was considered flavourful and great value. The beef tartare got the thumbs up, as did the mac’n’cheese, the southern fried chicken, and the triple cooked fries (yep, there were four of us!). The parpadelle was delicious and classy, but overpriced at $26 by comparison to other dishes.
The desserts were outstanding,and the accompanying whisky’s rated rather good too. The partaker of the milk and cookies couldn’t tell us what type of milk it was, other than creamy, the donuts with salted caramel dipping sauce were large and sugary, and the pecan pie was to die for (I’m choosing that way to go!).
The waitress did tell us that they’re curing their own meats, so a couple of dishes are yet to be be available. Again, not much here for vegos (like everywhere new in Wellington lately).
And I must note that the staff were all fantastically welcoming and personable. I wish them well.