Previously the old post office, Three Lamps renamed itself after the area and kept the architecture the same. They rebranded themselves from the Belgian Beer Cafe just over a year ago and, with over 220 craft beers from New Zealand and all around the world, it's no no wonder that beer lovers flock here!
I was actually quite overwhelmed with the beer selection but Josh and Mike were very helpful and picked an Emerson 1812 (IPA) for me when I expressed a fondness for pale ale.
|Harrington's Saddler Lager paired with Chilli and Garlic Prawns and Fish Tacos|
Our first beer was a Harrington's Saddler, a malt lager, to be paired with three seafood entrées. It had a toffee flavour and a light citrusy after taste. While very refreshing, I was confused that this wasn't a recommended menu match for any of the entrées we were served.
The Chilli and Garlic Prawns arrived in a sizzling pot with some crusty French bread. They were beautifully garlicky but lacked the promised spice. Not that it stopped me from picking them out of the pot with my fingers..
I was a bit skeptical of the fish tacos when they arrived as it's not something I would normally order but I was very pleasantly surprised. The soft fish, coated in a very thin layer of crunchy batter had a great texture and was paired well with a sweet chutney. The addition of jalapeños delivered a nice kick through sweetness.
|Whiskey Cured Salmon with Horseradish Cream Cheese|
|Beef Cheek Sliders paired with Emerson's London Porter and Mushroom & Blue Cheese Sliders paired with Yakima Monster|
The sliders came in fluffy buns that were incredibly soft and sweet. I started with the Beef Cheek Sliders paired with the Emerson's London Porter. The beef cheeks had been cooking for 6 hours which meant the the sweet, tangy sauce had penetrated through the meat and the tendons melted as you bit into the slider. I thought the porter was a bit heavy and overpowered the flavour of the beef.
We thought the blue cheese and mushroom sliders were better suited to its beer match, which was the Yakima Monster APA from the Liberty Brewing Company. The mushrooms were plump and smothered in a generous helping of cheese sauce which oozes out the sides as you take a bite.
|Crispy Skin Salmon with Prawn and Lime Risotto and Capsicum and Wasabi Couli|
|The "Boil Up"|
This was paired with the Dogfish 60 minute IPA, named for the fact it has over 60 hop additions over a 60 minute boil. It had a buttery flavour with a hint of apricots and there is also a 90 minute and a 120 minute IPA.
The Venison Pie came with a Newcastle Brown Ale and was served with a side of kumara mash and creamed broccoli and cabbage. The pot was filled to the brim with tender chunks of venison, which thankfully didn't have a strong gamey taste, and had a crunchy and light pastry top. The mash was very smooth and the sweet kumara was good contrast to the deep hearty flavours of the venison. The good ol' pie was paired with the Newcastle Brown Ale - something I can see myself having on a cold winters night.
|Lamb three ways|
The cutlets were perfectly pink in the middle and the crumb provided a nice crunch. The roasted shoulder was very tender although had a few tough bits that were kind of hard to chew. The shepherd's pie was nice and thick -again, something that I would love to have on a winter's night.
|Andrew the owner|
|Sierra Nevada Porter and Banana Bread Beer|
|Donuts with Chocolate Sauce|
This was paired with the Wells Banana Bread Beer which really blew my mind. The beer had a strong banana aroma (obviously) and tasted very caramelly.
The creme brûlée looked amazing when it came out and I was salivating before it even hit the table. It was a real shame that the sugar top had turned into a soft toffee and denied us the pleasure of cracking it with our spoons! The toffee stuck my mouth shut when I had a go at it anyway so I set it aside and dug into the creamy centre which had a good balance of espresso flavour and sweetness. I think I would order this again as it was obvious that Paddy usually executes this dish a lot better. I thought the shortbread was quite a heavy accompaniment though, perhaps something lighter and wafer like would have gone better. The toffee taste and bitterness of the Sierra Nevada Porter complimented the brûlée wonderfully.
|Espresso Creme Brûlée|
|Whitestone Cheddar Plate|
|Menu with craft beer suggestions|
Three Lamps Bar and Eatery can be found at 1-3 St Mary's Road, Ponsonby, Auckland
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Lucy and Jason dined as guests of Zomato and Three Lamps Bar and Eatery.