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Brix Cafe and Bar

Corner of Willis and Dixon Streets
New Zealand
Phone: (04) 385 1300 FAX (04) 385 1311
Date of Visit: 05 April 2007


Too long has it been between Dead Cows... far to long... so long in fact that this was the first official "Meat" of the year. One of my colleagues at work informed me he had seen a special for steak at a bar around the corner, $12 (about $8 US) Steak Eggs & Chips. Well at that point I thought, "bar steak, that can't be good" and "$12! You won't get quality for that." However as we hadn't been out yet, it was with in walking distance, and we could easily afford it, we decided to give it a go. So we headed out for lunch... and were pleasantly surprised.

Having been there before I knew what to expect. Atmosphere was average... it's a generic city bar. Dark wood colours, bench seats and regular seats with the odd mirror picture or beer brand on the wall. The place was empty so we had our choice of the tables. As I like being the center of attention I chose the middle of the room. There was a dip in the floor on one side of the table. I watched Nick go through about 4 different chairs before he figured out that it was the floor. Very funny. There was a distinct lack of background noise, there was no music and the screens around the bar where off. I kind of felt like I was in a library... A library that smelled like stale beer. Still it didn't stop us from having the usual loud and inappropriate conversations that occur among men when there is an absence of women.

The service was from a single barman he was straight to the point with out being rude and asked us what drinks we wanted almost before we were seated. Given the environment this is what I wanted. Our Dead Cow came out within ten minutes of arriving. This is the fastest service we've had yet. I was very impressed. A couple of the boys arrived late and the barman was right there asking what drinks they wanted. All in all pretty good service I thought (Though we were the only ones there).

Alas I forgot my camera and we had no pxt phones on us that could do any justice to a piece of Dead Cow. So you will have to use you imagination. Medium rare Sirloin of maybe 250gms (9oz) on a bed of steak chips and eggs. Good simple tasty food. I must complement them on the sauce. It was almost fruity like a chutney but slightly peppery, as a good steak sauce should be. It was very nice, especially on the chips. The eggs where actually runny, just how I like it. And the Dead Cow was far nicer than expected. It was well seared and the flavour was sealed in... this also meant my chips didn't sit soaking in a pool of blood so common with cheap steak meals. Not a single piece of Dead Cow was cooked wrong and it was far tenderer than the 12 dollar leather boot soles we had expected.

Don't get me wrong, this meal exceeded my expectations... but was still not in the same league as our preferred venues. It was, to quote my colleges, "good cheap steak". Well worth $12, I'd pay up to $18 for this meal but not more. Their drinks where well priced and the rest of the menu was typical of Cafés/Bars in the area so you can get the usual range of pub cuisine as well. As far as I can tell this is a semi-permanent lunch special. So if you in Wellington as looking for a good value lunch then head to Brix. Highly recommended cheap steak.


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