The new flatties have settled in nicely, and last night we did a flat outing to the dizzying heights of Newtown for $10 Tuesdays at Monterey. It's a very cute wee bar on Rintoul St, and on Tuesdays all burgers and cocktails are a recessionista-friendly $10.
One thing I particularly liked about Monteray, was that there was paper on the tables. We played hangman (one flatmate had trouble with the spelling of "sphinx", which swiftly ended the game) while our cocktails arrived. I had a blackthorn - sloe gin, with vermouth and bitters, but with berry and plum undertones, apparently. We also scientifically established eligibility of couples using that method primary school students use, with the number of L's O's V's and E's in your names. It was sweet. We shared a bowl of fries to start ($7) which featured an extremely tasty coriander mayo.
Monterey is adorable. It has kitschy carpet, reminiscent of my parents' house prior to 1989, and a dinky record player - the highlight being the original version of "I think we're alone now". A quick google search tells me Tiffany didn't in fact coin the original, and it was in fact Tommy James and the Schondells we enjoyed last night. Since it was $10 burgers - that's what we all did. Two of us went with the Haloumi and Onion Ring burger, with rocket, barbecue sauce, and coriander mayo ($10 on Tuesdays, $16 the rest of the time). It came with a smattering of shoestring fries, but I don't think there was any rocket. There was though, what I think was summer 'slaw - a feature of other burgers - cabbage, carrot, cucumber - tasty as, but the onion rings I think disolved in the saucy mess this burger became. I didn't mind at all - I love getting all saucy amongst a burger. I did note all flatties using knives and forks at one point though, so thought I should probably increase the etiquette stakes slightly, and put down said burger in lieu of a knife and fork.
The other half of our current flat composition enjoyed the cheeseburger - beef, cheddar, pickles, relish, aioli, lettuce, tomato and red onion ($10 on tuesdays, $17 the rest of the time). Like the other burgers, there were shoestring fries on the side, and this burger received rave reviews as both an absolute classic and a burger being made particularly awesome with the addition of gherkins.
Their menus are pasted into old books, which I adore, and there was a table next to us who were obviously on the Tuatara tap beers - they seemed to go from playing scrabble to playing cards (I was totally jealous of the scrabble. In fact, speaking of scrabble, my flatmate and I are thinking of getting amongst this). It's a neighbourhoodly bar and restaurant that is definitely worth the trek from town to the 'burbs for. All in all, highly recommended. I wouldn't be surprised if this swiftly becomes one of those Wellington institutions people harp on about. And rightly so. Give it a go!
Monterey. 4 Rintoul Street, Newtown, Wellington. Ph (04) 389 3008. Tuesdays - all cocktails and burgers $10.