In the charming little township of Mittagong in the Southern Highlands, we spotted The Shaggy Cow cafe on the main street and their all day grazing menu, which seemed to cover a wide range of Australian cuisine with an emphasis on local produce.
We were a little apprehensive as the tomato, basil, and buffalo mozzarella risotto arrived, looking a bit different from what we had expected. It was a vivid yellow, with dashes of green basil sauce, sprinkled with some pan grattato (Italian bread crumbs) with the extra lamb shank we had ordered placed to the side. Scooping the first creamy concoction into our mouths, we could not be more blown away by the intensity of the cheesy flavour and depth of the other ingredients. The lamb shank was cooked perfectly, providing a soft savoury accompaniment. Probably one of the best risottos I have ever had in my life.
Tomato, Basil, Buffalo Mozzarella Risotto with Lamb Shank, $23.90
We also shared a fresh linguine with braised beef cheek, roasted tomatoes, spinach and gremolata (fresh mix of lemon, garlic and parsley). The dish was topped with some baby spinach, parmesan, pine-nuts and seasoned with pepper. We were also suitably impressed with this dish, with an al-dente pasta with good flavours. We also liked how the nuts provided a crunchy texture to each bite.
Fresh Linguine with Braised Beef Cheek, $24.90
This is a quality cafe in an unlikely spot with fresh, gourmet dishes, which works well for travelers passing through the Southern Highlands to rest and refuel.
The Shaggy Cow
112 Main Street, Mittagong NSW 2575
Phone: (02) 4872 2966