Carbs and dairy, you’re pretty much soul mates. And there really is no combination more drool-worthy than an oozy serving of good ol’ mac’n’cheese.
Now, maybe it’s just us, but mac’n’cheese dishes seem to be all the rage in Auckland. From classic American versions to something a little fancier (truffle and crayfish, anyone?), here’s to helping our city’s very own mac moment with a list of all the mac’n’cheese dishes you need in your life.
The Grill’s menu is crammed full of irresistible dishes, but it’s the mac’n’ cheese that gets us every time. Made with pecorino and Talbot cheddar, a minimum of two serves of this side dish should be on your table at all times.
Jervois Steak House
We could smooch whoever decided to bring truffle to the mac’n’cheese party. Herne Bay’s Jervois Steak House cook their mac’n’cheese in a skillet alongside smoked ham hock and truffle for a truly glorious carbs-meets-cheese experience. It will go perfectly with your medium-rare Savannah Angus and is one of the best mac’n’cheese dishes in Auckland.
Bedford Soda & Liquor
So cocktails are cool and everything but Bedford Soda & Liquor’s mac’n’cheese needs to attention…right now. It’s a simple dish, nothing too snazzy, yet you’ll be sent to cheesy, carby heaven as soon as it hits your mouth. With the option to add bacon, we don’t know how this mac’n’cheese could be any better.
Smoked ham hock in mac’n’cheese appears to be a thing and we’re totally chuffed about it. The Culpeper’s bubbling skillet of happiness is the ultimate comfort food and therefore best enjoyed with an ice-cold beverage or two. You’ll be ordering seconds; we can guarantee that.
From time to time, Al’s Deli decides to treat us Aucklanders to a monstrous mac’n’cheese burger. This beast includes a brioche bun loaded with an Angus patty, bacon, caramelised onion and white truffle, overflowing with creamy, cheese-laden pasta. BYO defibrillator.
How do you take mac’n’cheese to the next level? Put it in a ball, chuck it in a deep-fryer, and serve it with truffle mayo and streaky bacon. And that’s exactly what Miss Moonshine’s does. What sets these babies apart is the crispness of their exterior. It will be love at first bite, people. Love at first bite!
One for all you seafood lovers, Harbourside’s mac’n’cheese contains two types of kaimoana—prawn and crayfish. Juicy prawns with a silky smooth crayfish béchamel, this is one cheesy mac that doesn’t cut corners. Soak in the ocean views and tuck in.
Forks at the ready! Johnny Barr’s offers not one, not two, but FIVE different styles of mac’n’cheese, and you’re going to want to try them all. Start with cheddar and chorizo followed by gooey brie and chives before moving onto blue cheese, bacon, apple and walnut. Seriously, get it in your belly. Pecornio and truffled mushroom is perfect for mushy fans and don’t forget to leave room for the three P’s—parmesan, prawn and pomodoro. You might have to be rolled out the door but mac’n’cheese is totally worth it.
Oyster & Chop
For a restaurant known for oysters, we were surprised to discover that Oyster & Chop also dabble in a bit of mac’n’cheese making. Prawn mac’n’cheese to be precise. Featuring plump prawns, roasted apple, gruyere AND ritz cracker crumbs (#notypo), you haven’t had a mac’n’cheese like this before. Genius! Genius we tell ya.
The Lumsden Freehouse
Why order your burger with a side of fries when you can get it with mac’n’cheese? (For real, why would you do that?) Choose between one of The Lumsden Freehouse’s handmade burgers—double cheeseburger, country-fried chicken, pulled pork, philly cheese-steak or pan-seared fish—and devour alongside a skillet mac’n’3cheese.
Brioche and parmesan crust you say? Little Easy’s mac’n’cheese is a standout on their fancy pub-grub menu. If you’re going to town on soul food delights, go ahead and order their cheese steak toastie—alternating bites of that and the mac will blow your mind.
Soul Bar & Bistro
Look, we get it. You might be feeling a bit mac’n’cheese’d out by now, but trust us, Soul Bar’s version is one of the best in Auckland. They make theirs with shrimp, chilli, paprika and parsley crumbs, and it’s nothing short of a carb-heavy masterpiece.
Just gouda have some more cheese? Here’s 20 of Auckland’s Cheesiest Dishes.
Image credit: Seasons & Suppers