Sunday, September 1, 2013

Tuck Shop Take Away, Caulfield North by Big Fil

It was a chance meeting, two strangers passing in the night, but I was a little surprised to see Nathan Stockley (who I recognised from photos from another website) walk into a new burger place on Glen Huntly Road.  It did provide the opportunity to swap stories about a few little known places to try, which is how I found out about Tuck Shop Take Away.

For me a Tuck Shop brings on flashbacks to school day lunches and there were a few elements of our visit which took me back to earlier times.  Redskins, served not as lollies but as milkshake flavourings, paper straws and glass milk bottles and Kids in America playing in the background.

Once you start ordering though it becomes quickly apparent that the menu is definitely modern Melbourne rather than your normal schoolyard fare.  Jaffles include creamed corn and pulled pork, milkshakes aren't your everyday vanilla and chocolate but rather peanut butter and salted caramel.  What really drew my eye first was the redskin milkshake, cute, frothy, sweet and ordered in junior size to make sure there was room for the other things I was planning to enjoy.  For Snooze it was the mint tea, made not from a packet but using fresh mint leaves.  Both drinks were obviously make with thought and care and a great start to our lunch.

My burger de jour was the major burger, with American cheese, onion, pickles, mayo, egg, bacon, tomato sauce and French mustard.  I must admit I am an old school Aussie burger kind of guy, I want my onion in rings, my bacon and patty meaty and smokey and the whole thing kind of messy so I need to lean forward to avoid the risk of hamburger lap stains.  The burgers here aren't quite like that, closer to the more common trend of quality ingredients, sweeter bun and fresher flavours.  On that basis I thought it was one of the better burgers I had tried recently, particularly that the patty leaned to the medium rare side and the egg was still slightly soft and runny.

Item of the day though was undoubtedly Snooze's pulled pork jaffle, with apple and fennel chutney and smoked almond mayo.  Soft juicy pork accompanied classic matching flavours, this is the dish that I'd get on a return visit.  Without a doubt the best jaffle I have ever had.

To complete the burger and jaffle we ordered a serve of the 'cuts', hand cut potato chips.  These are almost a mandatory accompaniment to the jaffles and burgers and were very, very good.  Crunchy and the outside, fluffy in the middle, and avoiding the way too common problem of an overly strong hand with the salt.

From the baked goods on offer we selected the brioche style doughnut and the chocolate brownie with redskin ganache.  In the only slightly discordanent note for the day, Snooze was a big fan of the donut which I was a little indifferent too, and vice versa on the brownie.  The donut was light and fluffy and served with the 'plug' placed on top.  My issue was that I found the sugar icing a little disappointing, being a huge fan of cinnamon that's how I want my icing to taste.  On the other hand, with the brownie Snooze found it a little dry, I suspect at least partially because when we broke it apart I ended up with most of the ganache (although I wouldn't have wanted it cooked any further either).

A small but very cute space, extremely friendly service and decent prices, Tuck Shop Take Away is a great addition to the area and fortunately just far enough away to walk off some of those calories every time I want to visit.

Food - 8.5
Service - 8
Ambience - 8
Price - 7

273 Hawthorn Road
Caulfield North VIC 3161
Tel: 0431 406 580

Tuck Shop Take Away on Urbanspoon

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