119 Dixon St, Te Aro, Wellington
Opens 8am daily; closes 3pm (post-Covid hours)
Porridge $14, replaced with granola in summer; Flight coffee (incl filter and cold); Tea Drop (black teas) and Libertine (herbal and green) teas
Hangar has a place in my heart. It was there that I was introduced to the pleasure of filter coffee by a friendly and helpful barista. I suddenly understood that the cappuccinos I had been drinking for so long conveyed little of the subtle tastes of coffee. And the delicious and amazing looking muesli I was served (not photographed unfortunately) made me think that maybe I should start sampling café mueslis.
It is mid-winter as I write and muesli has been replaced by porridge on the menu. That’s fine, because this is pretty good porridge I’m pleased to say. My serving came in a shallow dish. This could be a recipe for going cold quickly, but the bowl had clearly been well pre-heated and the porridge stayed warm down to the last spoonful.
The porridge was cooked with milk and cream and was very rich, but pleasantly so. On the top was an apple and rhubarb compote that was neither too sour nor sweet, and beneath this quite tart and runny yoghurt. And there was a sprinkling of cinnamon over the porridge. The menu did describe it as spiced porridge, but the dusting of cinnamon was so light that it barely warranted being called this.
Patronage seems good in this post-Covid lockdown period, with the place about a quarter or even half full on weekday mornings but packed out around midday in the weekend. I always wondered if Hangar got spill-over from the hotel opposite in the mornings as guest sought something better than a standard hotel breakfast. So maybe that clientele has dried up.
This is a subtly and nicely balanced dish. The porridge itself is rich with cream, and sweet with milk, but this is countered by the tart and thin yoghurt and the astringent stewed fruit. There is nothing especially exotic and spectacular here: just perfect balance. Plus great filter coffee and free sparkling water.
Reviewed June 2020.
Menus, ingredients and opening hours may change. Check with eatery before you visit.