I use TripAdvisor quite a bit when I go traveling and saw that The Federal Store is racked the Number one eatery in New Plymouth. So I thought I would give it a try. The Federal is a bit out of town maybe five minutes drive and I was fortunate enough to have a car to drive there. The decor of this place is pretty cool and pulls it off very well. There is a huge cabinet filled of salads and other savoury goods. While another cabinet is filled with cakes and other sweet delights. I decided to order my lunch off the menu and see what their hot food is like.
Vietnamese Style Pork Belly Burger with Pickled Veges, Pate, Spicy Aioli, served with Onion Rings and Fries
This was the burger special at the moment. I honestly did not know what I was going to expect but it did sound a bit like a Bahn Mi, which I am very fond of, but the onion rings through me off the scent. The fries were very nicely cooked and tasted like beer batter fries or had some very nice seasoning on them. The spicy aioli of the chips complimented the fries very nicely. The onion rings were some of the best onion rings I have eaten. The batter was crisp and the onions were cooked perfectly with the sweetness coming through.
The burger was fantastic. The pickled vegetables were fresh and had a good bite from the pickling and crunch from the freshness. The Pork was beautifully cooked and when you add it together with the pate and the aioli, an outstanding burger.
Hot Smoked Salmon
with your choice of salad from the Deli; Cesar and Kumara, Bacon and Orange Salad
I came back a day after as I enjoyed this place and we wanted something fresh for lunch. I decided to try their Cesar and Pumpkin, Bacon and Orange Salad and I discovered you could also order a piece of smoked salmon to go with it.
The Cesar salad was really nice. The pieces of boiled egg were perfectly cooked, the lettuce was crisp as were the one crouton I got. Adding it together with the dressing it was really good salad. Shame though there were no anchovies though.
The Kumara, Bacon and Orange salad was also very nice. The Kumara though had slightly dried out but with the other ingredients it was very nice. There was also pumpkin seeds in the salad that gave it a good textural difference.
The salmon was nicely cooked. However, I was not entirely sure it was smoked or was not smoked that long. However, it went really well with salads.
I am also I sucked for custard squares and when I saw this, I had to have it. The custard was of a good solid constancy and was not made of custard cream. The pastry was nice and light and combining it with the vanilla icing the custard square was really good.
Lemon and Passionfruit Slice
I had the slice on the second visit. Unfortunately this got served with yogurt which I am not a fan of with my cakes and slices. The Lemon slice was gluten free and was very nice. The coconut top was nice and not over cooked with the lemon and passionfruit curd was tart but sweet and the biscuit base was very good. Overall a very good slice and surprised that it was gluten free.
When the flat white arrived I was impressed by the contrast in colours. Overall the coffee was fantastic. The coffee was dark and bitter in taste but full of body with the milk velvety and smooth. After some research I discovered that the bean they serve is made especially for them by Ozone Coffee Roasters and named The Fed. Interestingly fact the inventor of the blend originally worked at Havana Coffee works and worked with Ozone to get the taste he wanted.
Overall I can see why this place is rated the number one eatery in New Plymouth. The food is really good, both the savoury and sweet. The milkshakes look fantastic and the coffee was very good. The service as well is very good and the food came out pretty fast after ordering. Overall a must try when you go to New Plymouth.
Website; The Federal Store