No residence in Melbourne could ever be complete without a visit to The Hardware Societe. It took me the better part of two years before I could make it along, the queues were always so off-putting but overall it’s an experience almost worth waiting for. Personally, I’m a little fine to skip returning though. Jamie and I were going to have a wild afternoon checking out buildings as part of Melbourne’s Open House Weekend and we’d start our day checking out the validity of the place to see if it matches up with its fame.
The queue was the better part of half an hour, which isn’t too terrible in the grand scheme of things, we may have been partially fortuitous having arrived at the earlier part of the day. We were seated right by the kitchen, which I should mention is an extremely tiny but a well run one at that. Coffees were mentionably good and service was efficient. Our server was a little over the top camp, I guess that’s okay.
Jamie’s order was the Lobster benedict ($25) with lemon and saffron hollandaise, grilled asparagus, soft herbs, brioche bun and two poached eggs. He enjoyed this dish quite a lot and so did many other people judging by the number of orders the kitchen was sending. I noticed the lobster wasn’t served warm but apparently this wasn’t a concern so I returned to minding my own business.
My dish was the Confit duck ($22) with salad and something pureed. Maybe red wine sauce, maybe parsnip puree. I can’t quite remember and pulling out the menu now confirms that the components can change from time to time. I did quite like the permutation on my day, very big plates and very luxe dishes – this is brunch we’re talking about and we’re being served confit duck and lobster! I personally would have preferred a touch more crispiness to the duck (unnecessarily eroded by sauce) and in comparing some of the other executions of the duck confit at Hardware Societe, I think there have been better ones before. Hardware Societe makes for an outrageously delicious and fancy option for your morning, if you can be bothered with the wait.