Monday Bunday went on holiday last week, I don’t know if anyone noticed but today I present a double whammy Monday Bunday rolled into a restaurant review.
I recently joined the NZ-based bloggers group #brunchclub. Here, bloggers can network, share tips and advice on all things blog related and of course, meet regularly for brunch.
On Saturday, I attended my very first#brunchclub meetup. I was super excited not only to meet local bloggers (some who I have followed for a while) but also because it was at a newish cafe/bar/restaurant called The White Rabbit.
This week’s Monday Bunday is a review this visit.
History of the space
The White Rabbit is in downtown Auckland on the corner of Customs Street and Gore Street, where the slightly dingy pub Rose & Crown and later Britomart Brewery used to be. The building, originally known as Hotel Britomart was established in 1864, just a year before Lewis Carroll published Alice in Wonderland.
Painted white and fitted out in Scandinavian inspired light fittings, the space is light, bright and very white. Magically appearing after a thorough renovation in a short span of time, The White Rabbit was partly named for this quick transformation. Downstairs is a cafe and separate bar, upstairs is a restaurant/bistro.
Design and illustration
Coming from a design and illustration, I fell in love with their logo. A top hat with a Miffy-esque rabbit card tucked into band. This alludes to Alice in Wonderland without being over the top. The light blue and white colour palette, their embossed leather menus and upstairs in the restaurant dining room, there are hand coloured prints of John Tennie’s illustrations from Alice In Wonderland. The staff all wear a white t-shirt with logo front and centre.
The separated bar area called Jones is like the cozy private reading room of a writer. Taxidermy peacock, vintage books, reading chairs, Where a literary gentleman such as Lewis Carroll himself might have retreated to for a stiff drink and some serious reading or conversation (if he wasn’t pondering magic mushrooms, opium or weed).
For brunch, I had the Braised farro, mushrooms, onion, wilted greens topped with a poached egg ($16). This was flavourful and delicious, like a breakfasty risotto. To this I added a side of cured salmon ($6), though it didn’t really need it.
My flat white ($4) served in a cute sky blue cup, was nice and strong and I loved how the teas come in a cast iron teapot. The other bloggers ordered a range of dishes, from granola, to toast, to bacon and eggs to a duck burger with chips (I know right?) I’m fairly sure we covered just about everything on the menu.
Breakfast dishes range from $8 to $18 and there are a couple of smaller sweet items for those who just want a nibble with coffee. The was unexpectedly sophisticated and the most interesting thing on the menu is the Pigs head, turnip, green apple, radish, and barley ($16). I honestly have no idea what to expect but I’m pretty confident whatever it looks like, it will be delicious. It was also cool to see black pudding as an optional add on.
They have a breakfast and lunch menu, a bistro menu, a grazing menu and two separate drinks menus. The menus are designed by executive chef Sean Marshall (Matterhorn, Libertine, Everybody’s, Roxy,) and their head chef is Ian Harrison (Clooney, Everybody’s).
Thanks to The White Rabbit for having us. All thoughts are my own and we paid our own way for our meals.
The White Rabbit
69 Customs Street East, Auckland Central
09 369 5069
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