I feel like many people and placed fancy up an “authentic” food and dishes, but I believe the true, very authentic food is not really fancy, but more simple, comforting, not perfect, and always make you imagine a friendly grand-ma in a kitchen, cooking up that very dish. It is perfection in a different way, not how it is executed, but how it makes you feel when you eating it. While searching for authentic Australian food, I learned that one of the authentic dish from Australia is a meat pie. So, I looked for a place where I can get an Australian meat pie. Where did I find it? at the Tuck shop.
It is a small place, cozy, with few counter seats and 2 metal tables put together by red brick wall. It is not a place people will have a long, three-course-dinner type of place, so the set up is enough for what they offer.
They had lots of antique looking Australian memorabilia on the wall, and some interesting artworks. They also had a surf board up on the ceiling too. What they offer is all sorts of savory pies, rolls, and some side dishes. They also offer homemade soda in several flavors.
We ordered their Traditional Meat Pie ($6), Pork ‘N’ Sage Roll ($4), and Mac ‘N’ Cheese Pie ($6). They had other pies that sounded really great too, but I wanted to try the traditional kind first, and who can resist Mac and Cheese?
The traditional meat pie is filled with ground beef, very juicy and packed with flavor. Simple, comfortable, and warm you up from the inside. The pie crust was thin, flaky, kind of dry as they were not fresh out of the oven, but came out from their heated show window. It had good amount of seasoning, with a subtle kick to it. Nothing fancy, but good old fashion meat pie.
Pork and sage roll was a pretty good size, packed with pork, sage, and veggies. It was again, meaty and packed with flavor. It was satisfying and very affordable. It was not as tasty as the meat pie, but added veggies and sage stuffed with meat gave different kind fresh flavor.
Mac ‘N’ Cheese pie was not as good as I wanted it to be. It sounded better than it tasted. I t was gooey but I wanted it to be more cheesy. The top had nice golden color from being baked, but it was a bit dried, again from sitting in a heated show window for a while. I think it would’ve been much better if we got it fresh out of the oven.
We also had a small dessert, Lamingtons ($3), a sponge cake with a strawberry jam center, and then smothered in chocolate and rolled in coconut. When I tried to cut in half (since we were sharing), it came apart easily right in the middle. It had pinkish hue, different from the one I had from the Thirsty Koala (you can read about it here: http://www.foodlovergirl.com/the-thirsty-koala/). But, as I bit into it, I realized that the pinkish hue is actually the strawberry jam. I wonder if they accidentally put the cake on the side way?
Anyways, as I bit into it, I could see the sponge cake. Since the strawberry jam is on the vertical side, instead of in the middle, in horizontal way, I didn’t get the flavor of strawberry jam with every bite. And the dessert itself was just a-ok, simple, no frill.
The staff was ok, nice enough, very chilled environment. A relaxing but quick snack stop to get a hot savory pie. I heard they have a daily special pie, but on this day, we were told they didn’t have any special pie on that day. Bummer… I would like to try some of other pies if I am in the area, needing a quick snack.
Tuck Shop – 68 E 1st St #1, New York, NY 10003