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11° & CLEAR SKY ON WEDNESDAY 21 AUGUST IN WELLINGTON
By John Son
July 22, 2019
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Brown Brothers

This new CBD opening serves up daring Indian-inspired European dishes.
By John Son
July 22, 2019
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We all love a good fusion restaurant, especially when one sets out to shake things up with rarely attempted combinations. Brown Brothers is the latest gourmet eatery to land on the popular Marjoribanks Street, serving up daring Indian-inspired European dishes.

You can tell it's a fusion restaurant before you sight the menu. Step inside and you're instantly embraced by that enticing aroma of Indian spices — but the dishes that people are tucking into look like the sort of thing you'd see in a high-end Cuba Street establishment.

Even the fit-out reflects this theme, with the warm red hues of one wall contrasting with the trendy brick facade of another (complete with subtle neon signage).

After being served a complimentary pan-fried mash with coconut as a starter, our mains arrived. The wild shot venison ($32.50) is one of the restaurant's signature dishes, and it comes with a tamarind puree, a side of dauphinoise potatoes, oyster mushrooms and an assortment of vegetables. The meat is pretty standard, with a nice char to it, but it does combine well with the medley of sweet flavours found elsewhere on the dish.

If the venison was all about being quietly solid, the rum flamed duck cafreal ($28.50) comes out with all guns blazing. The presentation is something to behold, and the quality of the dish itself comes pretty close. While we found the duck a tad dry, we just couldn't ignore the bold flavour of the beetroot raita, and the pumpkin thoran adds a nice creamy edge. Bonus points also for the creative poppadom, which is served as a flauta-like roll.

We finished up with a couple of desserts: the saffron yogurt panna cotta with lime and honey creme fraiche ($14.50) and the sorbet trio ($13.50), the highlight of which was definitely the ginger beer sorbet.

The food at Brown Brothers isn't what you'd call mind-blowing, but we expect them to continue improving as they settle in — the foundations are definitely there. While it's not the best fare you can get at this end of town, you have to commend them for pushing the boundaries, going all-out with some unique flavour profiles and bringing something new to the game.

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