In the wise words of Veruca Salt, "I don't care how, I want it now!" Braised, roasted, slow-cooked or tossed through pasta; do with it as you please but, seriously, just serve it already. It may not be a gold-coated chocolate egg, but a good lamb shoulder sure does taste just as sweet.
I've never been the biggest lamb fan but, having had it forced upon me by my father since being able to chew, I'll tolerate it every now and then. That is, unless we're talkin' king of cuts - the glorious lamb shoulder.
Here are a few local haunts serving up this delicious fare, so have a peek and decide who's the best baaa none.
Described on the menu as being cooked for a "very long time", the dish is designed to share. You will be graciously presented with the piece de resistance before the waiter gently pulls the meat of the bone and drizzles with mint jus. Served with a choice of two sides, we recommend the miso dressed beans and whipped potato. It's a totally drool-worthy dish.
Where: Tank Restaurant and Bar | 31 Tank Street in Brisbane CBD
Contact: 07 3003 1993
Saltbush organic lamb shoulder with Asian greens | Organic Char
With the slogan, "Just because it's organic, doesn't mean it won't moo, quack or oink," one would assume that Organic Char serve up mean (and eco-friendly) lamb. Well, that they do. One of their most popular dishes, the slow-cooked Saltbush shoulder is deliciously juicy and tender. Team it with a side of the glazed beets with goat's curd, baby carrots and chardonnay vinaigrette and you won't be complaining.
Where: Organic Char | 1 Eagle Street in Brisbane CBD
Contact: 07 3211 9944
Strozzapreti al Ragu d'Agnello | Beccofino
For an Italian take on the traditional slow-cooked shoulder, make tracks to Teneriffe institution, Beccofino. Think short twisted pasta with a lamb shoulder and sweet pea ragu. Bellissimo!
Where: Beccofino | 10 Vernon Terrace in Newstead
Contact: 07 3666 0207
Slow cooked lamb shoulder with patatas a lo pobre and lemon puree | Oritga
People rave about this dish, and until you've tried it, you'll probably never fully appreciate why. Accompanied by poor-man potatoes cooked in lamb juices and peppers, with a bitter lemon puree, it's a Spanish flavour sensation. You'll know long before the lamb shoulder arrives that it's on its way, with the air dripping a warm, savoury and rich aroma. Sous-vide'd with herbs for two-and-a-half hours, it's pan seared and cooked for another 15 minutes before being served on your plate.
Where: 446 Brunswick Street in Fortitude Valley
Contact: 07 3852 1155
If lamb shoulder tickles your fancy, how do you feel about Brisbane's Best Pork Belly?