For worthy eating and drinking experiences around Wellington, NZ (and the greater region) – you can also catch Heather out and about hosting Zest Food Tours around the city…

Archive for the tag “meals”

Kelburn kool…

A sunny Saturday (finally!) and a friend’s foodie tales of Kelburn beckoned.

A quiet start around 9am meant the opportunity to window peek and decide the sequence for sampling.  In the interests of brevity (Kelburn has a lot to offer), I’ll summarise where I think you’d go for the best offerings.

Kelburn Café – you can’t miss the advantage of morning sun and newspaper here.
After watching a continuous stream of people coming by for coffee, I too opted to try the LAffare on offer.  Smooth, silky milk throughout (not always easy with trim) and a pleasing creamy glossy finish. Very good.  The cheese scone that caught my eye on the counter wasn’t bad either.

The Original German Bakery – this is the place to come for breads, heavier dessert-style slices and hot cross buns.  Samples of said buns (both traditional and chocolate) were out the front on a wooden table to tempt passers-by.  Nice.

Cameron & Harrison Butcher and Deli – appealing rows of sausages and other meat goodies complemented by interesting deli products.   I succumbed to a purchase of the Glasseye Creek Wild Meat Sauce, with the most entertaining story label I’ve ever seen (the label alone is worth the price, truly).

Caffe Mode – the best show in town for eating in, cabinet or menu.  Sited in an old villa with front views of the lovely St Michaels Church, or rear views of bush and old Kelburn villas, this is a very pleasant spot to stop and relax.

I enjoyed a very pleasant bowl of muesli with yoghurt and warm berries, whilst browsing a magazine and watching the various staff disappearing and reappearing up the central wooden stairwell to the kitchen below.  A bit like magic really – go down with nothing, come up with delicious food!

The Platter Delicatessen – European styled, with all sorts of interesting products and condiments.  The owners (husband and wife, both present today), were very helpful in explaining products and suggesting new things to try.  I now have ideas for

the white asparagus, and came away with a bottle of The Platter’s own walnut vinaigrette (made using a French walnut mustard they also stock).  This is the place to come and pick up your dinner party ingredients (EFT-POS only though), or a quick dinner when you can’t be bothered yourself (chicken casserole with a tipple of whiskey, lamb bolognese with a tipple of pinot noir…), hand made pates, European style cheeses and meats, pies, and much more.  Hungry yet?

Dinner – I’m told the Yellow Chilli Indian is very good, there is a Mediterranean Warehouse branch doing pizzas in the old Keburn pub, and I also spied the Pratha To Go takeaways.  I’d come back and try these as something a little different in the takeaway space.  The folks from Roti in Willis Street, so should be good.

And if you happen to strike Kelburn on Kelburn Fair / St Patricks Day, with sun, jazz musicians playing on the street, fluffy green candy floss and green iced buzzy bee chocolate cupcakes, I think you’d just about pack up and move here…

Trade Kitchen

Well hello to all my loyal followers (yes all 15 of you!).  Last night was a dinner catchup with some ex-CCDHB colleagues.  A drink and nibble at Foxglove (will have to give you the low down on them another time, they’re a whole post’s worth) and then off to Trade Kitchen for dinner.

Trade Kitchen is another of those places that slides underneath the radar a little in terms of  profile, but actually turns out some very pleasant food at reasonable prices (in today’s market where a lot of restaurants are creeping up into the $30-$35 per main range).

The decor is subtle and reasonably sparce (I liked the big red fabric swathes around the xmas tree though), but still welcoming.  The food and drinks provided a good selection of the usual suspects, lighter and denser meals, and some rather pleasant wines – an unoaked chardonnay for me (not always so easy to get), and a rather tasty riesling for R (well what’s mine is mine and his is mine and mine is his – at least when it benefits me!…).

I chose the risotto of the day of chicken, mushrooms, asparagus, feta and strips of parmesan to complete.  The rest of the group chose a variety including free range chicken breast stuffed with pesto, spinach and mozzarella on warmed couscous, pinenuts, roasted vegetable salad and chermoula aioli (my second choice, mmmm), fish of the day, a scallop special and parmesan crumbed pork cutlet on porcini risotto and sauteed cabbage w almond and apple sauce (my third choice, mmmm mmmm).  They all looked good and were met with favourable reports.

We controlled ourselves in terms of dessert given we’d had wine and nibbles earlier, but the choices (and those that came to nearby tables) looked worthy.  Interactive and humorous service throughout completed the evening.

The only difficulty with the place was ventilation.  We were around the back (overlooking Customhouse Quay) with no opening windows or obvious ventilation on one of Wellington’s (finally!) warmer evenings, and were all glistening fairly well by the time we’d finished.

The brekkie menu looks good (especially the banana and coconut bread with citrus butter and honey – yep me the carbo girl), so might have to find an excuse to slide back along this way soon at the other end of the day…

Definitely worth a visit for something of good value and standard at this ‘corporate’ end of town.

Fork and Brewer, Bond Street

And so the Wednesday night wander has rolled around again (along with the rain). Having wandered past the Fork and Brewer on the weekend and thinking we should try it out again (having only been for a beer previously), here we are…

The boys from Malthouse are the main drivers behind this consortium, and they know what they’re doing in terms of decor, details and customer service.  There are lots of interesting little touches like different handles on all of the beer taps (and there are many) from utensils to tools to a hose head to a gun, a mix of booths, leaners, tables, balcony and relaxing couchy spaces, and a xmas tree made of beer bottles with twinkly lights.  Cute.

AND the brewing tanks and equipment are in the process of being installed (we wondered if they might be ex-Macs actually).  In fact, we had a wee table overlooking  the balcony right where they lifted another big piece of brewery structure in whilst we were there.  Entertainment as well as food and drink!

So the drink of the night was a Renaissance Barley Wine (one keg only available), which would have been rude to go past.  Actually it was rather unexpected.  We were imagining a pale drink like a dry lager.  But in fact it was rich amber, almost a bit thick in taste like a light stout, quite sweet and definitely not hoppy (yay!).  Very tasty.  Unlike in Vanuatu (where I discovered their beers are quite light, sweetish and not hoppy), I restrained myself from drinking all of R’s beer tonight.

And the meals were perfectly pleasant.  In fact probably a notch above that.  I had a light  Tandoori Chicken Salad with crispy noodles, turmeric potato and chili peanut dressing.  Very tasty.  And R had the pork burger off the snack menu (and a beery caramelly bread and butter pudding, just to be sure!), which also was interesting in that the bun was a thin light turkish style as opposed to the usual bigger boring burger bun (go the b’s…..), with a large home made style pork patty and the ubiquitous fries.  Not bad at all.

Nice and easy, a notch above usual large beer bars, and relatively close by.  We’ll definitely be back.

20 Bond Street.

POSTSCRIPT: And a few more recent F&B images:



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