Oh! So

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29 Crummer Road,
Grey Lynn

(09) 360 0700

The ViewAuckland Review

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Review byBrett Atkinson17/09/2009

It’s market day along Ponsonby Rd, and a few businesses seem to be using this rainy Saturday morning as an opportunity to mark down lots of stuff they’ve had sitting on the shelves for a while. The paucity of real bargains doesn’t seem to be putting many people off though, and parking is at a premium, especially around a few of our favourite brunch haunts. It’s just as well we chance upon a great alternative just a few short blocks way from Ponsonby’s main drag.

Apparently Oh! So Café opened in early 2009 to cater to the SOHO Square development just around the corner on Williamson Ave. Owing to the excesses of international bankers, the development is still just a waterlogged hole in the ground, and Oh! So is busy focusing on a mix of business and residential customers. Chances are the parking would be more difficult on a weekday, but on a Saturday morning there’s no problem, and the hassles of finding a space on nearby Ponsonby Rd seem miles away.

Oh! So is housed in a lovely old corner villa that’s been brightened up with modern décor, spacious rooms and big picture windows. Service is professional but friendly as we’re seated at a big shared table right beside a nicely up-to-date selection of local and imported magazines. There’s also an outside deck that will the go when summer finally arrives, especially when Oh! So starts opening for evening meals. A small, but perfectly adequate wine and beer list, is another reason to plan a return for dinner in a few months.

Right now though, Oh! So is all about a concise but well considered breakfast and lunch menu. My Chorizo with Mushrooms on Sourdough ($14.50) is very good; hearty and warming, and lacking the cloying richness that adding a marsala sauce sometimes brings. Coffee from the Supreme team up the road is hot and flavourful. Carol’s choice of Cured Salmon with Scrambled Eggs and Green Tea Oil ($14.50) comes piled on robust slices of Five Grain toast, also perfect for mopping up the last of my tasty sauce.

Ponsonby Rd’s cafes will continue to be a destination for many brunch fans, but any really canny weekend diners should also make their way to this slightly out of the way gem.

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