Handsome & the Duchess - a big name to live up to

Handsome & the Duchess - 16 McHenry Street Adelaide SA 5000

**Please see our revisit review of Handsome and the Duchess for the most current review**

Mirko was quick to spot the opening of Handsome and the Duchess on McHenry St, just off Gawler Place in the CBD.  We decided to catchup for lunch and coffee as soon as we could.  Hard to spot from the main Gawler Place strip, the outside looks like its been copy and pasted from a Melbourne or Sydney laneway. Inside is much the same, the style throughout is eclectic, from the whisk shaped light shades, the open kitchen and white washed walls, it's the kind of fit out that Adelaide hasn't seen a lot of. The cafe has a small menu, with a few salads and sandwiches that are focussed on the lunchtime customers.

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Cakes, cakes and more cakes
There is also a large cakes cabinet, housing a range of cakes, large and small, all made in house. There is also one very cool coffee machine, and bags of Mecca coffee on the shelves. Nathan suffers a bit of tunnel vision when he sees this and suddenly becomes very eager.  No one else has brought Mecca Coffee to Adelaide yet, and Nathan frequents the King St location when in Sydney.

Adelaide, beef, Cafe, Coffee, Cold Drip Coffee, Food, handsome & the duchess, Pork Belly, salad, Sandwiches,
Vietnamese Salad - $10.90
We order and pay at the counter for a Vietnamese Salad, a Roasted Pork Belly Sandwich, Cold Drip Coffee and a Latte.  The menu is displayed on a menu board above the open kitchen.  The Vietnamese Salad is described as including lemongrass beef, cucumber, bean sprouts, spring onion, fresh coriander, fried shallots, mixed leafy greens and Vietnamese dressing (with optional hot chilli sauce).  Amanda is presented with the salad shortly after seating in a plastic takeaway container.  On observation and lots of mixing around we cannot see any of the described cucumber, bean sprouts or coriander.  Amanda raises this with the waitress and she returns it to the kitchen and returns with some cucumber placed on top.  She informs that the ingredients are at the bottom and the salad requires mixing (after mixing, we all agree there was no cucumber at the bottom originally).

While eating Amanda notices there is carrot in the salad that was not described on the menu, cucumber is now plentiful (after raising this) there is a lot of mixed leafy greens and spring onions but she did not come across any coriander or fried shallots.  The lemongrass beef was not tender as she was hoping and instead was chewy.  The serving size for the price was quite small and had her hungry not long after.

Adelaide, beef, Cafe, Coffee, Cold Drip Coffee, Food, handsome & the duchess, Pork Belly, salad, Sandwiches,
Roasted Pork Belly Sandwich - $12.90
Mirko's Roasted Pork Belly Sandwich arrives in a open cardboard box and we all notice the small amount of filling inside a good sized ciabatta roll.  The filling consisted of brie cheese, cucumber, shredded apple, cos salad and honey mustard dressing.  Mirko enjoyed the flavour combination but did not enjoy the pork belly.  The pork was undercooked and instead of a nice crunchy roasted skin it was a piece of soft fatty rind.  Mirko was hoping for a Pork Belly Sandwich reminiscent of his favourite at Hey Jupiter.  Read his review here.


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Cold Brew - $4, Skim Latte - $3.80
Nathan already had his lunch on this day, so he chose to come along to view the place and try the coffee. Nathan was like a kid in Lego land when he spotted the Mecca beans. He chose his standard skim latte, his base comparison drink as per his coffee roundup. It's a good coffee, using BD Paris Creek Farm milk too. The milk has good texture and heat, and the Mecca beans are well matched. He was very satisfied with his choice. Mirko also grabbed a cold filter coffee, and was nice enough to let Nathan try a bit. Another good coffee, with low acidity from the brewing process and some nice caramel tones. Nathan will be returning for coffee over the next few weeks to check for consistency.

In summary, we'd be heading back for coffee, but not for the food. There are a lot of other options that offer better quality and value for money.

Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly:  3 vegetarian options
Child Friendly: More a corporate clientèle

Ambiance: 4/5 - Cute, funky with an interstate cafe vibe.
Service: 3/5 - Over the counter service, fast arrival of food.
Food: 6/10 - Good coffee. The food needs more improvement.

In total OTCB gives Handsome & the Duchess 13/20 chops on The Chopping Board

Handsome & the Duchess on Urbanspoon

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