I love toast. I love cheese (though it doesn’t love me…a very sad relationship). I especially love cheese on toast. As a student, I used to love to come in after being out at the cinema with my then boyfriend, and sit down with my parents and whatever guest happened to be there, and make a pile of what we called, cheesey toast. It was made with whatever Cheddar cheese was lying around, grated, and mixed with milk, then spread on bread and put under the grill. It was a kind of poor man’s instant Welsh Rarebit, runny, cheesey and nicely browned. Sometimes, to push the boat out, some of us would add a thin layer of anchovy paste underneath the bubbling cheese.
I’ve never been able to recreate that toast. If you ask me why, I will tell you that it was the gas eye level grill, something you don’t see now I don’t think, being rather dangerous features that were great at setting fire to tea towels (at least in my childhood home….). You need a hot grill, placed close to the cheese, and, let’s face it, cheap, sliced bread.
These thoughts all came to mind following an excellent early lunch at Field & Green in town. I had been wanting to go there for a while to try their kedgeree, but as I had had my standard poached eggs for Saturday breakfast, looked for something without eggs. As the waitress came across to take my order, I decided to forget my cheese avoidance and opted for the Tuna and Gruyere Mornay on Toast.
What arrived was hot, bubbly cheese on toast, with a hint of tuna. It was sublime, the ultimate comfort food, just the thing on a bit of a grey Saturday after a challenging Pilates class. You may think the toasts look small, but believe me they were so rich you couldn’t have wanted for more. I washed them down with some good-not-tea-bag English breakfast tea (though if it had been an hour later, I may well have tried the Bloody Mary).
The menu changes week to week, and everything on the all day/supper menu looked so good. The lunch menu is available from 11:30am to 3pm, and dinner Thursdays to Saturdays from 5pm. They are closed on Mondays, and open until 3pm Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday. You can find Field & Green on 262 Wakefield Street in Wellington. They were recently awarded ‘one hat’ in the Cuisine magazine Good Food Awards.
Verdict: probably the most expensive cheese on toast I have ever had but worth every dollar. Service excellent, clientele all reading Monocle or newspapers, or meeting up with friends and family. I would definitely go back again and this time not have eggs for breakfast so I can try the kedgeree.
*Blog title – quote from an essay on cheese by G K Chesterton