Duck Duck Goose

Rebecca Varidel
9th Aug 2015

Eat, Drink, Play is the Duck Duck Goose motto. And perhaps it is fitting, as the name of the game brings back childhood memories, if the blackboard on the back wall of the Randwick cafe and the kids menu are anything to go by.

Yet playful as the name is, it's only when you actually chow down on the Duck Duck Goose food that you get an inkling of the quality of the Randwick café, and of the background of its owner- Nick Porter. Dig deeper, check out the provenance of the Duck Duck Goose produce to find he uses such quality providores as Kirks for cheese, Pepe Saya for butter, Matt Brown for fruit and veg, Vic's Meats, Brasserie Bread. The list says chef, and with a pedigree. Porter did in fact cook at Aria in Sydney and Matt Moran who is a local sometimes drops in. Another name that zaps in the Porter past is from outside these shores, the smiling Irish Chef Richard Corrigan.

Although the café is very friendly, and customers are greeted at the door "would you like to eat in or are you after take-away" at Duck Duck Goose the food is the real reason to visit. The menu, I reckon is perhaps one of the most delicous around. No gimmicks, Duck Duck Goose are just dishing up bloody good tucker. The most popular brunch dish is Sweet potato pancakes and smoked bacon, maple syrup, marscapone and roast pear. Other temptations include Black pudding, apple & radish salsa, caramelized pear with 2 free range poached eggs & toasted sourdough ($22). Spicy chipotle house made baked beans fries the eggs and serves it with corn and avocado salsa, and sourdough toast. For something simpler, the menu offers what I feel is a marvellous option: 2 soft boiled free range organic eggs with sourdough soldiers. (Now that certainly takes me back to being a kid. Mum used to cringe after a big night out when she had to make me those runny eggs. Now I understand what a boozy night can do.) A wide range of yummy additions that are available for any dish, result in a perfect combo to fit everyone. One tip: try the house made salmon gravlax; it's dry cured in salt, sugar and herbs, and sensational and can come as an extra in two sizes ($4 /$7.50). Just these extras give the nod to the beauty of this place: Beechwood smoked bacon, Black pudding, Slow cooked lamb shoulder, Roast Thirlmere organic chicken, Grilled haloumi, Sencha smoked tofu.

New to the menu is an inspirational bowl: Crispy miso cured egg, sencha smoked tofu, avodaco, nori & sesame dressing on warm brown rice, kale & umeboshi plum salad. This latest innovation is worth a visit to Duck Duck Goose all on its own.

The current daytime menu also offers some exceptional burgers. Do you fancy some Compte aged Gruyere on your cheeseburger? Yes. Please! And falafels for the wraps are house made, as is just about everything including muffins, cakes and a decadent caramel slice.

The motivation behind a family-friendly café is about to go one step further. News is that Porter is looking to open at night. Like many new parents he sees that gap between when he could go out (same deal for his wife) to all those hipster places. Moving to Randwick, having young kids. Then what? So he has this fabulous idea: a 4.30pm to 6.30pm kids dinner setting when cheese by weight and prosciutto by weight will be offered for the wine drinking big kids. Sounds good? It is coming soon.

Porter practices what he preaches. Although we didn't catch his wife and young kids on the premises, we did I spy with my little eye him eating lunch with his Mum and Dad.