Review: Breakfast at The Duxton

Ashleigh Went

Canberra is spoilt for breakfast options.

With a new place popping up every five minutes, it’s hard to know where to get consistently good food, decent serving sizes, and a price that won’t have you seeing red (especially if you’re an avid avocado toast fan—and who isn’t?).

Well, this makes it easy… The Duxton at O’Connor are now open for breakfast on weekends, and having experienced it first hand, I can tell you it ticks all the boxes.

By day, The Duxton (which many may think of as an evening destination) is light, airy—and the outdoor seating will be positively divine once we start to see a little more of the sun. When we visit, it’s a sunny Saturday and we take a seat at a spacious table next to a big window overlooking leafy O’Connor, ordering our coffees and perusing the menu.

It’s not a huge menu (as someone who gets analysis paralysis when it comes to ordering food, I find this a relief), however, it’s big enough that there’s something for everyone. There’s a vegie-packed green breakfast or chia pudding with berries for the healthy among us, jazzed up classics for the traditionalists and a Duxton ‘Big Massive’ for, well, the hungry.

My better half orders the big massive, while I choose the breakfast burrito. As I write, it’s been a week since our visit, and every time I think of that burrito, I salivate a little.

Duxton breakfast burrito

The ingredients are delicious—pulled pork, bacon and scrambled eggs with avocado, refried beans and cheese.  There are a lot of smooth textures (plus the salty pop of bacon) and combined they make a creamy filling encased in a crispy, crunchy tortilla. Dipped in the accompanying sour cream, the result is hot, gooey, crispy goodness.

The Duxton Big Massive is an impressive portion. There are two poached eggs, bacon, pulled pork, avocado salsa, mushrooms, grilled tomato and sourdough toast. But my favourites are the hash browns, cooked to utter perfection: salty and crunchy on the outside, delicious potato on the inside. As I said, the portion is big, but given that brunch is essentially two meals…well, I wouldn’t judge you for eating the whole thing.

Duxton big massive

And how could I, when we share a third dish?

The Duxton Benjamins comprises two poached eggs with spinach, smoked salmon and hollandaise on sourdough. The eggs are beautifully poached with golden, runny yolks; the smoked salmon, delicious; and the hollandaise, buttery with a citrusy tang. None of that jarred nonsense. The sourdough is really lovely too—crunchy but not so much that you have to saw through it, and with just the right amount of butter.

Duxton Benjamins

I’m tempted to finish off with something sweet—the buttermilk pancakes with salted caramel ice cream, perhaps? Unfortunately, however, my stomach simply won’t allow it.

Let’s rewind a little now and talk booze.

One of the first things on the menu to catch my eye is the tempting list of breakfast cocktails. Yes, you read that correctly. It’s not a fancy way of referring to a humble smoothie—these are fully-fledged, adult cocktails.

I love this offering for a few reasons: I often meet friends for a celebratory weekend brunch and feel sheepish asking for a glass of bubbly. Enjoying a little alcohol on a weekend morning feels indulgent and special—a far cry from your average breakfast experience.

Duxton cocktail

For the sake of research, I try all three cocktails. The Bloody Mary isn’t something I’d usually order, but I enjoy it, nonetheless. With House vodka and house-made tomato juice, it has a real bite (and the option to add some chilli vodka for an extra kick!).

Duxton cocktail 2

The Breakfast of Champions is my favourite—hardly surprising, given it took out the AHA’s Spirit of the City cocktail competition this year. What better way to kick off your weekend than with rum, maple syrup, cold press coffee and chocolate bitters? With a bacon garnish, of course. It’s just as delicious as it sounds.

Lastly I try the Barbossa—spiced rum, banana, lime, apple and mint. It is kind of like the adult version of a banana smoothie! Not a list of ingredients I would think to blend, but a delicious surprise nonetheless.

I love the versatility of The Duxton for brunch. It’s somewhere I’d take my family, sit and catch and up with my girlfriends, and proves perfect for a leisurely breakfast date with my boyfriend.

It’s now firmly on my favourites list.

the essentials

What: The Duxton
Where: Corner of Sargood and Macpherson Street, O’Connor
When: Breakfast is available on weekends from 9am to 12pm
Contact: Call 02 6162 1799 or visit their website or Facebook page

This is a sponsored editorial. For more information on sponsored editorials, click here




Ashleigh Went

HerCanberra ACTIVE Editor Ashleigh Went has a passion for all things health and wellness. As someone who loves champagne and cheese almost as she loves a sweaty workout, she's all about living a healthy, balanced lifestyle. She can usually be found with her nose in a book, planning her next adventure, in the gym or updating her Instagram @wentworthavenue. More about the Author