Review: Shed 5, Wellington

Chicken and mushroom tortellini with black truffle beurre blanc at Shed 5.
Britt Mann/Fairfax NZ

Chicken and mushroom tortellini with black truffle beurre blanc at Shed 5.

A taste of… Shed 5, Queens Wharf, Wellington

We'd heard… You could have a two or three course lunch for less than $50, from the Dine 'n Dash menu.  

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We started with... A different menu to what we were expecting. The list before us was not the "new" one Shed 5 had posted on its Facebook page.

We made the catastrophic mistake of ordering the skate entree. The adorable fish, known and abhorred for its high collagen content, died in vain. We scraped the gelatinous mush off a bed of spiky bones with a little shiver of horror, longing for the bruschetta we'd snobbishly passed over. 

The ravioli, barely perceptible to the naked eye, was delicious - seasoned, ground chicken and mushroom in silky dough, with black truffle beurre blanc -  the portion was minuscule but the flavour was big. 

Slow-braised beef cheeks with mushroom ragout and onion rings at Shed 5.
Britt Mann/Fairfax NZ

Slow-braised beef cheeks with mushroom ragout and onion rings at Shed 5.

Then came the pork belly, and the beef cheeks. My friend preferred the pork - the crackling was crunchy, caramelised, salty and rather imaginatively dusted with gingerbread crumbs. I found the dish a bit dry, preferring the dark, molten beef cheeks orbited by crumbed onion rings. My enthusiasm was almost certainly due to my shameless love of over-salted foods. 

The desserts were a highlight. My petit fours with affogato was as cute as a chocolate button. Vanilla bean ice cream, two little chocolate truffles, and a biscotti that disintegrated at first touch and sprayed me with delicious crumbs. The most interactive dessert I've had in a while - I'd order it again.  

We each had three courses at $40 each. The meal was worth the price, but probably not the skate-related trauma. 

The service was... hilarious. My friend and I joked about the romantic harbour views when we sat down. The waiter brought us a tealight candle.

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The vibe was... fancy, curiously juxtaposed with fluoro-clad runners hurtling past the window, and the middle-aged couples by the water having a cheeky lunchtime pash. 

If you go… You can book online.

Immigrant Son espresso with vanilla bean icecream, biscotti and truffles, at Shed 5.
Britt Mann/Fairfax NZ

Immigrant Son espresso with vanilla bean icecream, biscotti and truffles, at Shed 5.

Try to avoid… The skate. At this restaurant, and all others. 

Rating out of 5: 2

 - Stuff

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