The Hangar

Hangar - bircher - header image

119 Dixon St, Te Aro, Wellington
Opens 7am daily; closes 3pm
Bircher $17, Porridge $14, granola; Flight coffee (incl filter and cold); Tea Drop (black teas) and Libertine (herbal and green) teas

The Hangar is a special place for me, for it was here that I was served a delicious and amazing looking muesli (not photographed unfortunately) in early 2019 that made me think that maybe I should start sampling café mueslis. I also took the plunge of trying a single origin filter coffee and I’ve never looked back. Some day I will do the three-bean tasting comparison they offer – like wine tasting where you get a line-up to try at once.

Hangar - bircher and coffee

Hangar change their oat dishes from time to time. I was expecting porridge to have replaced muesli for the winter, but no, it was bircher muesli instead. And not a traditional bircher at all, for it was dominated by soaked chia seeds. However, unlike the chia bircher at Cin Cin, these did not take over completely. They were accompanied by large, soaked whole-grain oats. At least, I think that’s what they were. They looked a bit like soaked sunflower seeds.

Speaking of seeds, the menu lists the dish as ‘tahini bircher w/ banana, candied seeds, cacao nibs and raspberry compote’. I didn’t detect candied seeds. Nor tahini, though I suppose it could have been there. And as for raspberry compote, there was a pink colouring, as you can see, but no berries evident. I thought it was just berry yoghurt. There was a single drop of pink syrup on the banana though. Not sure what that was. And everything was well awash in what I assume was oat milk.

Hangar - view to back semi empty

Two things helped shift the dish from being an insipid bowl of mush. The cacao nibs added a crunch into the swampy base. My companion particularly liked them, but I sometimes thought I’d bitten on a piece of grit. If you have ever lost fillings or chips off your teeth to tiny stones in food you will know that awful feeling. So it was a mixed experience for me. The other bit of pizazz were the flower and petals that added colour and contrast.

Hangar - interior populated

The filter coffee was great as usual. I had the Nicaraguan unwashed Los Morales one. The only negatives with The Hangar is that they no longer offer newspapers, and most of the seats are fairly squashed together in the back area, away from the natural light. Mind you, if you sit near the glass doors at front you get a stream of people coming and going, and a draft on cold days.

Hangar -view to counter

Patronage seems good in this post-Covid isolation period, with the place about half full on weekday mornings and packed out around midday in the weekend. I always wonder if Hangar gets spill-over from the Abel Tasman hotel opposite in the mornings as guest seek something better than a standard hotel breakfast (in the rebranded but still dismal-looking Staten Eatery there).

Hangar - exterior
Conclusion

I have enjoyed the muesli, granola and porridges at The Hangar in the past, but I have to say this bircher muesli was a disappointment. In a nutshell, too liquid and slimy. I haven’t written the place off by any means though. The menu will change and we will hopefully get something nicer. And there will always be the great filter coffee and 7am opening on weekdays AND weekends (who can beat that!?)

Reviewed June 2022.
Menus, ingredients and opening hours may change. Check with eatery before you visit.

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