Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Nieuw Amsterdam, Melbourne CBD by Bureaucrat

Nieuw Amsterdam.  I love saying the word nieuw.  It somehow makes me feel very worldly and well-travelled. Having taken over the spot that was previously Pugg Mahones (the Irish pub), Nieuw A'dam is a wonderful replacement.  

For a good old gossip lunch with Ms W and Ms H, we headed to Nieuw.  There's a sense of intrigue as you climb the dark, ornate stairs up to the restaurant.  The place is very nicely fitted out in dark woods and luxe gold and marble touches.  It feels like the set of Cheers but with way more class and elegance and hipsters.

Deciding what to eat was difficult - everything was tempting.  I dithered between the NY clam chowder, the lamb neck and the grits.  I decided on the slow braised lamb neck ($22) and was in heaven.  Melt-in-your-mouth lamb.  It was beautifully lamb-y but not game-y/mutton-y in flavour.  It went wonderfully well with the al dente hand rolled spag (so worth blowing my no gluten diet) and the salty earthiness of the manchego cheese.  The turnips, surprisingly, added a nice sweet earthiness to the dish.  It was a pretty big serve but I finished it... oh yeah!  I wasn't going to let any of this dish go uneaten!

Ms W went for the Nieuw Reuben ($16).  A thick slab of bbq beef brisket w sauerkraut, pickles, cheese and Sriracha mayo.  It came with these impressive chips and a crisp salad (propz for the inclusion of radicchio).  

Ms H ordered the southern style pork bahn mi, pickled carrot, cukes, apple sauce, pate and crackling ($16.50).  Both Ms W and Ms H struggled to finish their meals and had to get the rest in a doggy bag to take with them.

We were all definitely full but I persuaded the guys to share with me the pumpkin doughnuts w Kentucky bourbon cream ($15).  Freshly made, the doughnuts are fluffy and orange on the inside.  You couldn't quite taste the pumpkin but that was okay, as were all loved the cinnamon sugar crust and the boozy cream.

Food – 8.5
Service – 7.5
Ambiance - 8.5
Price – 7

A great restaurant with a wonderful vibe, food and service.  It is a bit more pricey but well worth it.  Definitely a place to go if you're looking for something special but still wanting to spend less than $20 for a main meal.  I will be back!

Nieuw Amsterdam
106-112 Hardware Street
Melbourne 3000
Telephone: 9602 2111

Nieuw Amsterdam on Urbanspoon

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