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the goose, willoughby

September 4, 2012

“Get over here you silly little goose.”

It was a mere three hours after meeting Koji and already I’d been given my first nickname.

I wasn’t sure about it at first – geese are such odd creatures, you see, all long necks and beady, curious eyes and flapping wings – but it’s managed to stick, and every startled honk and sideward glance out of me continues to perpetuate the moniker.

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What is the best way to compliment your lazy Sundays and make them even more perfect? A hot cup of frothed coffee of course! Devondale Barista’s Own is made to deliver a consistent smooth creamy froth to your favourite style of coffee at home.

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About three weeks ago, as Koji & I sat on the bus heading city-wards, he caught me in a flurry of rapid blinks and hand waving at a sight out of the window.

“What was it gosling?” he asked, readying himself for a detailed description of a chair, or a person, or some other nondescript object that had nonetheless caught my attention.

“It’s a GOOSE! We should go!”

“Alright then. But it means we’ll have to get off the bus, catch it and take it home. And we’ll be late if we do…”

It wasn’t, of course, a real live goose (as Koji had envisaged), but a brand new restaurant named “The Goose”.

Run by interior-designer Jane, her son Anthony & their business partner Sam, the Goose is an impressive looking venue with polished concrete floors, three large chandeliers, a stone hued bar and a long wooden table running almost the length of the room.

And so, after hearing rave reviews about their steak sandwich from Koji’s housemates (and seeing a picture of a giant piece of meat, almost comically topped with a slice of bread), that we made our way there for breakfast.

This little gosling has clearly grown up quickly.

Despite having only been open for six days, we arrived at a little closer to 11 than anticipated to find an almost packed out joint. Mums and kids. Dads and daughters. A cycling group and a nattering reunion of friends perched on the long wooden table.

Tables cleaned, and stunned with the choices, we selected the final two dishes on the menu.

For Koji, a hearty meal of potato rosti, poached eggs, wilted spinach, grilled haloumi & chutney ($13.50) with a side of thyme roasted mushrooms ($3) and for me, an amazingly rich ensemble of two poached eggs, beetroot cured salmon pastrami, white asparagus, wilted spinach and a lush truffled hollandaise that I subsequently went mad for ($17.50).

We were charmed.

(And I was kicking myself at having not brought along my camera).

So I did the only thing reasonable and dragged Lex along for a reprise.

Monday mornings call for coffee. Well, they do if you’re Lex and have a long day of driving ahead.

A flat white and a macchiato for him – both downed with murmurs of contentment – and a hot chocolate for me.

“Make sure you write that it’s a Belgian hot chocolate” chides Anthony, jokingly as he sidles past our table “we made it with chocolate buttons.”

Whatever it’s made with, it’s good. Faintly bitter, creamy and just hot enough to be warming without risking a scalded tongue.

free range poached eggs, crispy pork belly slice on your choice of bread, truffled hollandaise $14.50

I’m scanning the menu. Leaning to and fro between the pancakes and the rather intriguing black rice, coconut milk & poached strawberry dish, when Lex looks me square in the eye.

“Shez. It says pork belly. Are you seriously going to say no to pork belly?”

“You’re probably right. But I’ve got lunch plans.”

“You’ll be fine. It’s probably only a couple of rashers anyway…”

“You’re probably right. Belly it is!”

But he was wrong, and gloriously so!

Four long, perfectly crispy and salty strips of pork belly sitting atop two slices of soy and quinoa bread. Gooey poached eggs atop them. Oh. And that truffled hollandaise that I’d been thinking about all week.

The mind willing but the body weak, I left half a rasher behind from a sheer inability to eat it all.

gruyere scrambled eggs, black pudding, thyme roasted mushroom and prune jam with choice of toast $15.50 // extra thyme roasted mushrooms $3.00

Lex, deciding to match one rich breakfast dish with another, opted for a platter of gruyere scrambled eggs accompanied with mushrooms and black pudding.

Three stout rounds of black pudding sat atop a slick of prune jam. More sausage with blood and chorizo than blood sausage, it had a spicy moreishness to it rather than the typical slightly metallic flavour of its more traditional counterpart.

“These eggs haven’t been watered down. I like that in a scrambled egg,” mentioned Lex as I swiped as many of the extra mushrooms as I could before anyone noticed.

Full near to bursting, we paid our bill and waddled away.

“I’m absolutely stuffed. Full. To the brim. I’m going to have to cancel lunch and dinner,” said I later to Koji.

“You’ll be just about right for the oven then. I’ll let the family know Christmas is coming early.” he replied.

“Harrrummmph… HONK!”

 

The Goose Bar & Restaurant

537 Willoughby Road, Willoughby
ph (02) 99588785
Open Mon – Tue: 07:00-16:00 / Wed – Sat: 07:00-23:30 / Sun: 07:00-22:00
website

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What is the best way to compliment your lazy Sundays and make them even more perfect? A hot cup of frothed coffee of course! Devondale Barista’s Own is made to deliver a consistent smooth creamy froth to your favourite style of coffee at home. Check out some of the fantastic breakfast recipes in the Lazy Sunday Series thanks to Devondale Barista’s Own.

The Goose on Urbanspoon


  • #1
    September 4th, 2012

    That free range poached eggs with crispy pork belly and truffle hollandaise looks heavenly… I can’t believe how reasonably priced everything is!!

  • #2
    September 4th, 2012

    yay I love finding out about new places to eat in the ‘hood. The gruyere scrambled eggs sounds great and pork belly for breakfast? Yes please!

  • #3
    September 4th, 2012

    The words crispy pork belly grabbed my attention, but then married with poached eggs (my fave) and hollandaise (another major fave) oh hello!!! I will admit I have never had pork belly for breakfast, not that I don’t want to :)

  • #4
    September 11th, 2012

    That pork belly looks AMAZING!! This is my new must try place. Great review.

  • #5
    Phil
    December 7th, 2012

    Sorry but the atmosphere and bar service were pretty terrible. The ceviche had come straight from the fridge and was terrible – drowned in liquid and they even agreed it had been made 24 hours earlier. The squid was actually good and better than most wine bars.

    Unfortunately the staff didn’t take kindly to being told about the ceviche. Whatever happened to ‘the customer is always right”?

    While only personal preference, they need high tables as well as the low tables and to get rid of the one long table. This place suffers from trying to be two things – a wine bar and a cafe. It simply doesn’t work very well at night.

    With so many great small bars within 1k, this won’t survive unless they make some changes quickly.

Shez