Small place big on flavours

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Saffron couscous with red onion, sumac and parsley, and a red-wine jus. Photo: Wendy Johnson

“This is a take-away food operation, plain and simple, but it’s a great way to feast with family or friends (goodbye junk food),” writes dining reviewer WENDY JOHNSON.

IT’S a small place that pumps out big flavours on all fronts. 

Wendy Johnson.

Pialligo Urban has mastered the art of maximising operations in its rather compact “pick-up or delivery kitchen” tucked into a wee corner next to Waves car wash in Lonsdale Street, Braddon. 

Despite its size, operations run as smooth as butter under the watchful eye of Canberra hospitality veteran Chris Gallaher, who is 100 per cent confident Pialligo Urban is dishing up a winning product. 

This is a take-away food operation, plain and simple, but it’s a great way to feast with family or friends (goodbye junk food). 

It’s smart that Pialligo Estate has branched into “the burbs”, and I envy Braddonites who are close enough to just walk to and fro with their pizzas ($18 to $26), charcuterie plates ($25), pastas (three types; $19 each) or dinner boxes ($130, but a real feast). 

The Possum Patch kids’ menus get the little ones jumping for joy (three options, $12.50 each).

Pialligo’s signature… the 18-hour, slow-cooked lamb shoulder. Photo: Wendy Johnson

We opted for the dinner box, simply unable to resist the Pialligo’s signature, whole 18-hour, slow-cooked lamb shoulder. 

We shared our dinner box with four friends at home, starting with the charcuterie platter (included) created with fine Pialligo Estate Smokehouse produce. The Smokehouse has picked up a whopping 113 awards, to be precise. It was a fine selection of cured and smoked meats and pickled, estate-grown veggies, and came with garlic pizza bread. 

The charcuterie platter… a selection of cured and smoked meats and pickled, estate-grown veggies. Photo: Wendy Johnson

Also included in the dinner box was saffron couscous, red onion, sumac and parsley and a packed-with-flavour red wine jus. It happened to be a chilly night so we opted for the seasonal, wood-roasted mixed vegetables from Pialligo Estate’s market garden.

It was a gi-normous meal with loads left over for lunches the next day. 

Seasonal, wood-roasted mixed vegetables from Pialligo’s Estate’s market garden. Photo: Wendy Johnson

We headed to the website to order, discovering we could only order after 5 o’clock on the evening we were dining. It made us a bit nervous because we didn’t want to miss out on that slow-cooked lamb, but we needn’t have feared. Staff just grab it from the sous vide, whip it into the pizza oven and, before you know it, the lamb is crispy and hot and ready to go.

Because we were dining in the inner south, we found it a bit fussy to organise delivery (there are several options on the Pialligo Urban website, but they didn’t all come our way) so just hopped in the car to pick up. When online you select which time you want your meal ready, so it’s quick and easy. 

Pialligo Urban, Unit 4, 15-17 Lonsdale Street, Braddon. Open Thursday to Friday (noon to 2pm) and Wednesday to Sunday (5pm-9pm).

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Wendy Johnson
Wendy Johnson: Food reviewer for Canberra CityNews magazine since 2004, covering stories for true foodies to digest.

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