When Google tells me that Lonely Planet describes Dose Diner as having one of the best Eggs Benedicts in Christchurch and the café wins Zest’s 2015 Café of the Year, the it sounds like a place that I need to check out.
Dose Diner can get busy, and when it does there’s little to no parking – as was the case on this particular day. I decided to park at The Warehouse just next door and walk to the café.
Eggs Benedict with pork is gaining some traction around town and Dose Diner has a Pulled Pork version which I simply had to try.
Served on a couple of nicely toasted pieces of sour dough, the plate looked extremely appetising when it arrived. However the two poached eggs had merged into one large one in the pan and hence had a very frugal amount of hollandaise on top.
The ‘eggs’ were perfectly cooked and the hollandaise was pretty standard. Having more sauce would have helped balance out the meals most fatal flaw though, as I’ll explain.
The pulled pork was lovely, with a mild BBQ taste, and went well with Eggs Benedict. I can see why it’s becoming popular, if a tad untraditional. But the taste of the pork, and everything else on the plate was tainted by a sticky sauce drizzled all over the plate.
I thought it may have been a honey/soy concoction so I asked the waiter what it was. He asked the chef and told me the sauce is a “sweetened balsamic reduction”.
“It’s really nice, isn’t it?” the waiter said.
“No, it ruined the whole meal” I replied, much to his astonishment.
You see there was nothing sweet about this balsamic reduction at all – it was intensely bitter and tainted almost every mouthful. It overpowered the delicate eggs and when it got amongst the pork, it killed that taste too.
The baby spinach under the pork was also strangely bitter and metallic, which didn’t help things either.
Had there been a more generous serving of hollandaise, I believe it could have balanced out some of the bitterness, but alas there was nothing to save this dish from leaving me underwhelmed.
So I left with a bitter taste in my mouth both literally and figuratively, and a firm believer in what many call the “Lonely Planet curse”.
Eggs Benedict with bacon, salmon or pulled pork
on Sour Dough $19.50
on Two Hashbrowns $21.50