During a visit to Canberra a friend from Sydney (who has recently moved down there for work) met up with us. We decided to grab a late lunch after my boyfriend went mountain biking in the morning, and I biked around Lake Burley Griffin.
We stumbled upon Urban Pantry in the trendy Manuka area while we sourced the streets for a place that served gluten free food. This cafe style eatery has a trendy, vintage feel and delivered on the gluten free front and so we decided it would be the perfect place to eat. Inside is nice and cosy but there is also nice outdoor seating under a MASSIVE tree for when the weather is good.
I ordered the chicken risotto (gluten free) to share with my boyfriend whist my friend ordered the chilli seafood linguini (unfortunately I didn’t get a snap of it). The risotto was nice and creamy with a decent amount of chicken breast pieces scattered through. The baby spinach was nicely wilted but definitely far from being cooked which gave a lot of freshness. On top was a little blob of soft cheese (brie or camembert – I can’t remember). My boyfriend said he wasn’t so hungry and only wanted to try a bit but he ate half of it so he must have liked it!
I also ordered some parmesan polenta fries to try (probably not gluten free – cross contamination in the deep fryer). Last time I quite liked polenta fries because it came with a blue cheese sauce which was probably why I was so keen to order this at the time. However, with polenta chips you need to remember that unless you cooked them with some sort of stock or embed bits of pop all through it, it actually is quite bland. These were no different, they were plain polenta chips that was soft and moist inside with a nice crispy exterior. The parmesan and chives were a nice pop of saltyness and freshness amongst all the polenta but I felt like it needed more parmesan to go around. These were surprisingly very filling!
It’s a nice place serving quality food in a nice area. I’d come back, also because my boyfriend didn’t get glutened which gives extra brownie points! You can check out their website here for their latest menus: http://www.urban-pantry.com.au/
***Originally published Oct 2014 on my previous blog***