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LUCKY STREET

Recently, my parents moved overseas, which means my sister and I are now fending for ourselves in the kitchen – I was very excited, mainly because of the freedom we would have to cook whatever we fancied! However, after spending many nights chopping vegetables, making marinades, stir-frying meat, cooking rice etc. and then eating very late, I have come to the conclusion that poached eggs on toast, takeaways and food deliveries are simply the best.

And my new favourite dinner? Street food, like tacos, dumplings and burgers, delivered straight to your door!

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Introducing LUCKY STREET, a new weekly meal-kit delivery service, run by taco aficionados Sarah and Otis Frizzell from The Lucky Taco.

Launching this Sunday 20 August, LUCKY STREET will offer two “fun, tasty and easy-to-assemble” meal kits which are delivered to your doorstep each week, each including award-winning Lucky Tacos and another dish that will change weekly. The second dish will be from famous food joints, such as cult Korean burger bar Tiger Burger, Brazilian-Japanese sushi from the Temaki Truck, pop-up Miss Changy, Thai eatery Farang Cafe and K’Road curry house Satya, with other exciting names to be announced soon.

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Last week, I received LUCKY STREET‘s week one box. It contained all the ingredients to make mouth-watering Chipotle Chicken Lucky Tacos – marinated free-range chicken, soft tortillas, avocado crema, pink pickle, shredded red cabbage and fresh salsa, coriander and lime…

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PLUS all the ingredients to make Tiger Burger’s Smokey Lee Burger – free-range patties, smoky bacon rashes, aged cheddar, crispy shallots and homemade Korean BBQ sauce and aioli, with a bibimbap salad and tasty dressing.

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And the great thing? No complicated recipe cards… just quick and easy cooking videos on YouTube!

Both the Chipotle Chicken Lucky Tacos and Tiger Burger’s Smokey Lee Burger tasted out of this world amazing! Literally the best food delivery/takeaway/homemade dish ever. All the ingredients were of high quality, were fresh and had loads of kick!

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I am so excited about the new LUCKY STREET meal-kit delivery service, for its delicious and easy to prepare meals. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

The low down:
LUCKY STREET launches this Sunday 20 August (delivery will then be every Sunday).
• Choose from 1 or 2 options of the BEST famous eats in NZ.
• Weekly or fortnightly delivery available.
• Delivery to the Greater Auckland area for launch (from Long Bay to Papakura).
• Expansion to Hamilton, Tauranga and Wellington is on the cards if the service takes off.
• Sign up to LUCKY STREET here.

For more information, click on the links below.
Website / Facebook / Instagram

Auckland Restaurant Month: SOUL

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Food lovers rejoice because Auckland Restaurant Month is here!

From 1-31 August, Restaurant Month celebrates the central city’s diverse dining scene, offering 26 unique dining events and the chance to experience over 100 special menus, priced at $25, $40 and $55+.

It is also a great opportunity to step outside the box and eat odd – try a food you wouldn’t normally eat and have a whole lot of fun doing it!

Last Friday, a friend and I were invited to dine at SOUL. In honor of Restaurant Month this year, SOUL goes L.A. Chic! They have a limited edition menu which is inspired by the flavours and food trends of Los Angeles. It’s new, it’s funky, it’s delicious!

We indulged in their $50 three course Restaurant Month dinner, matched with a delicious gin and pineapple rum cocktail and wines. I particularly enjoyed their Smoked Chicken Liver Pâté with date vinegar, Oxtail Agnolotti, and to finish, a decadent Chocolate Budino Tart. The Santa Monica Sling cocktail, Pencarrow Pinot Gris and Kumeu Village Chardonnay were also perfectly matched!

Here’s a peek of the dishes we tried:

To start: 

Santa Monica Sling Cocktail with black robin gin, pineapple rum, rosemary, kaffir lime syrup and almond spice. Lovely refreshing cocktail with strong flavours. A great start to the night!

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For entrees:
Smoked Chicken Liver Pâté with date vinegar and grilled bread. My first time trying chicken liver pâté – it definitely exceeded expectations!

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Salt & Pepper Squid with almond skordalia, chilli oil and lemon. SOUL’s salt and pepper squid is always a highlight!

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For mains:
Oxtail Agnolotti with pistachio, rosemary, brown butter and currants. My favourite dish of the night – melt in your mouth!

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Mushroom Tortelli with balsamic and hazelnuts. Our least favourite dish of the night, as the pasta was under cooked.

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For dessert:
Chocolate Budino Tart with salted caramel, olive oil and sea salt. Glossy, rich, decadent, divine.

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Food aside, service was friendly and attentive – we couldn’t fault a thing! The atmosphere was buzzing and the setting always a highlight. Think waterfront views, boats, twinkling lights and pretty white flowers hanging above.

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The ‘SOUL goes L.A. Chic’ menu will be available the whole month of August and costs $40 per person for a two-course meal or $50 including dessert.

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For more information about Auckland Restaurant Month and a full list of events, click here.

Photo credits for non food pictures: Heart of the City / SOUL

 

Georgieats’ Weekly Faves

Following on from my first post of Georgieats’ Weekly Faves, and in memory of attending The Food Show this time last week, I will be sharing my favourite foodie products which I purchased at The Food Show. There were some amazing products, along with some great show specials – I ended up coming home with 7 bags! I have narrowed this list down to my Top 10 products. Enjoy!

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Follow me on Instagram (@_georgieats_) to see me discover new eateries, try out new foodie places and products and see previews of future blog posts!

 

Weekly Faves


Tamarind Chutney by Jenny’s Kitchen

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Jenny’s Kitchen Tamarind Chutney is my all time favourite chutney by far, and something you will always find in our fridge at home. It is the most divine chutney you will ever eat, and tastes great with everything. I love spreading it on pizza, adding it to salads, with vegetables, with lasagna, or simply eating it straight out of the jar. I especially love their X-hot flavour!

Below is a Caramelised Onion, Chicken and Tamarind Chutney pizza by Jenny’s Kitchen to get you drooling. Recipe here.

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Jenny’s Kitchen Tamarind Chutney is available at Farro Fresh, IE Produce and Binn Inn.

Jenny’s Kitchen Tamarind Chutney
Instagram / Facebook 

 

Silver Fern Farms

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Silver Fern Farms makes quality New Zealand lamb, beef and venison. It is expensive, so I have rarely bought it, hence I haven’t tried a lot in their range. They did however have a great special at The Food Show (3 products for $32), so I purchased their Beef Stir-fry, Lamb Stir-fry and Venison Mince. I plan to make thisthis and this. Stay tuned on Instagram for my snaps!

Silver Ferns Farms is available at Countdown, New World and Farro Fresh.

Silver Fern Farms
Instagram / Facebook

 

Nut Butters by Pic’s

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Hands up who’s a fan of Pic’s peanut butter? I reckon it’s one of the best peanut butters on the market and who can resist their latest ice cream collaboration with Lewis Road Creamery? (For more details, click here).

Prior to The Food Show, I had never tried their Almond or Cashew nut butters. They are delicious. So far, I’ve enjoyed both on rice crackers (see below), on toast and of course, eating it straight out of the jar!

Pic’s nut butters are available at New World, Pak & Save, Countdown and Farro Fresh.

Pic’s
Instagram / Facebook

 

Blackcurrant Powder by Sujon

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Sujon was started by two Kiwis, Sue and John Gibb (hence the name) who run Australasia’s first and longest berry company. You can buy their Sujon berries frozen, powdered, mixed and in capsules.

Their blackcurrant powder is our favourite – it is essentially crushed, freeze dried blackcurrants. A load of research has been done on blackcurrants – they are definitely the next superfood! Check out the information here and here! And best of all, the powder, when sprinkled on porridge/cereal, blended through smoothies or mixed with water, tastes delicious! Check out this yummy recipe here.

Sujon’s frozen berries are available to buy at New World and Pak N Save, however you can only purchase the blackcurrant powder at Health 2000, Binn Inn and selected health stores.

Sujon Berries
Instagram / Facebook 

 

Rice snacks by Ceres Organics

Have you tried Ceres Organics Black Rice Crackers yet? They are ah-mazing!!!

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I also love their Rice Cakes! I purchased both at The Food Show and have been non-stop munching! For a great snack, I love a good rice cake spread with nut butter and topped with tomato, like below!

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Ceres Organics’ products are available at Countdown and New World, as well as the Ceres shop in Ellerslie.

Ceres Organics
Instagram / Facebook


Little Bird Grawnola by Little Bird Organics

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I love Little Bird Organics. Raw, vegan, gluten and dairy free food that is insanely exciting and tasty! Just visit one of their cafes and you will be amazed! They also sell a delicious selection of homemade macaroons, crackers, nut milks, and best of all, grawnola. My favourites are their berry and cacao flavours and I love adding it to my weetbix or sprinkling it on my porridge!

Little Bird Grawnola is available at Little Bird Unbakery (Britomart and Ponsonby branches) and Farro Fresh.

Little Bird Organics
Instagram / Facebook

 

Sprouted Seed Pizza Bases by Home St. / Bakeworks

Home St. is bringing back bread the way it should be – nutritious, wholesome, delicious, and gluten free. Their bread is baked with sprouted and activated seeds (like sunflower, sesame, pumpkin and linseed), resulting in a soft and chewy texture.

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I’m already a huge fan of their Sprouted Good Seed Pizza Bases, having made a Chicken, Caramelised Onion + Jenny’s Kitchen Tamarind Chutney pizza (mentioned above) and a Margherita pizza (as below)!

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Home St’s pizza bases are available at New World, Countdown and Farro Fresh.

Home St. / Bakeworks
Instagram / Facebook

Chocolate Marshmallow Bars by Queen Anne Chocolates

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With their chocolate marshmallow eggs only available during the Christmas and Easter periods, Queen Anne Chocolates wanted to make a product that could be purchased all year round. Introducing, Chocolate Marshmallow Bars!

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The bars come in a variety of flavours – Dark Chocolate Boysenberry, Dark Chocolate Caramel, Milk Chocolate Raspberry, Milk Chocolate Caramel and Milk Chocolate Caramel and Strawberry. Yum!

Queen Anne Chocolates are available online and at New World, Pak N Save and Smith & Caugheys.

Queen Anne Chocolates
Facebook

Chia Seed drink by CHIA

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CHIA is a company I had not come across until discovering it at The Food Show last week. It is a beverage made from 90% organic hydrated chia seeds, with the company located in Nelson.

My favourite flavours are the Feijoa & Guava, Mango & Coconut and Blackcurrant & Apple. They also make sparkling coconut water infused with lemon and blackcurrant – lovely!

CHIA is available at New World, Countdown, Scarecrow, Best Ugly Bagels and Commonsense Organics.

CHIA
Instagram / Facebook

 

Lebanese products by KOHKOZ

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Kohkoz was a new stand at The Food Show this year, selling authentic Lebanese hummus, baba ghanoush, garlic dip, falafel and breads.

I tried all of their products and can say that everything tasted delicious! I bought a packet of their Lebanese wraps, falafel and baba ghanoush dip and plan to eat these in the weekend. Stay tuned on Instagram for my snaps!

KOHKOZ’s products are available at Farro Fresh and online at Foodbox.co.nz.

KOHKOZ
Instagram / Facebook

 

Hope you all enjoyed my faves this week and stay tuned for next week!

For more of Georgieats’ Weekly Faves, click here

The Food Show 2017

Calling all food lovers!

Today, I attended my favourite foodie event of the year, The Food Show Auckland.

Held at the ASB Showgrounds over four days (Thursday 27 to Sunday 30 July), The Food Show showcases the best in food, drink and kitchen equipment from product owners around the country.

There is so much to sample and buy at The Food Show, you get the opportunity to meet and talk with the owners behind all your favourite brands, experience different foodie zones and EAT, EAT, EAT, which is what I really love about this event! Below, I list my favourite zones, stands and products to buy at The Food Show.

Ticket entry also includes cooking demonstrations by some of your favourite culinary stars at the Cooking Theatre! There will be 19 sessions over the four days, featuring headline cook Annabel Langbein, along with Michael Van de Elzen, Ray McVinnie, Simon Gault, Annabelle White, Nici Wickes, Jonny Schwass and French chef Nicolas Bourgois. Check out the timetable here.

Another great thing about The Food Show is the product specials. This is your opportunity to buy your favourite products at a discounted rate, as many product owners will offer a 2-for-1 deal or something similar. Prior to visiting, I usually make a list of what I would like to purchase on the day and the prices for each product. To save you the time, I have listed my favourite show specials of The Food Show below.

Also, don’t leave without buying/renewing a magazine subscription – my favourites being Taste and Dish! They will have a special deal on their respective magazine and usually this includes a wonderful goodie bag and sometimes, a delectable treat!

Check out my list below for my favourite zones of the day, stands and show specials, along with a string of foodie photos!


ZONES

There are many fun and exciting zones to visit at The Food Show, including the Casa Barilla Cooking School, Artisan Village, Huntley & Palmers Cheese Alley, The Healthy Hub, Ceres Organics Healthy Hub Kitchen, Street Food Alley and Countdown Fresh Market. Check these out in more detail below.


Casa Barilla Cooking School

Wanting to learn the art of simple Italian cooking? Well, then the Casa Barilla Cooking School is just for you! Hosted by Executive Chef Andrea Tranchero, these one-hour interactive pasta masterclasses are hands-on, meaning you get to cook your own pasta dish and taste it afterwards!

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Executive Chef Andrea Tranchero

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There are five sessions each day (10.30am, 11.45am, 1pm, 2.15pm and 3.45pm) and you get to take home a wonderful Barilla goodie bag! The masterclasses are free when you buy a ticket to The Food Show, but spaces are limited.

I attended the 11.45am session today and it was so much fun! We made Penne Rigate with Italian Sausage, Porcini & Button Mushroom in a Bolognese Sauce. It was simple, yet delicious and very convenient as all the ingredients can be found in the supermarket. If you would like the recipe, let me know!

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Penne Rigate with Italian Sausage, Porcini & Button Mushroom in a Bolognese Sauce

Artisan Village

This zone is all about handmade, small-batch and traditional high quality goods all in one place. My favourite stands include:

  • Gathered Game X Wild Venison Salami – 100% Wild New Zealand Venison, which comes in four different flavours (mine being the smoked paprika). It’s also dairy and gluten free.
  • Milly Molly Bakes  perfect fit baking paper liners which are pre-cut for baking tins. Such a great idea!
  • The Macho Mini – Auckland-based cupcake company who specialise in mini cupcakes which are soft and fudgy, with delicious fillings such as raspberry coulis and salted caramel.
  • Wild Fennel Co.  gourmet seasonings for your meats and seafood.

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Huntley & Palmers Cheese Alley

Cheese, glorious cheese. Head to the Huntly & Palmers Cheese Alley to sample some of the best cheese from makers and suppliers around New Zealand and beyond. My favourite stands include:

  • Huntly & Palmers – delicious crackers to accompany your cheese (my favourite are their baked oat thins, which I eat almost every day!)
  • Ghiotti European Cheeses – I love their Buffalo Mozzarella and Parmigiano Reggiano!
  • Spring Blue Cheese – I love their organic goat feta and haloumi.
  • Mathura YNM Foods – authentic Indian dairy products, i.e. paneer cheese.
  • Sheep Milk NZ – if you haven’t tried sheep milk, you’re missing out! It’s sweet, creamy and has a deliciously nutty taste.
  • Taste Greece – a small family owned business which makes goat and cow feta, as well as barrel-aged feta – a must try!

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Spring Blue Haloumi

The Healthy Hub

Always one of my favourite zones at the Food Show, featuring wholefoods and healthy products. A highlight was seeing Ceres Organics again – they have great show specials (see below under ‘Show Specials’) and many tastings! Stands which I also loved include:

  • Bakeworks – Home St. breads – I love their nutritious and gluten free sprouted and paleo breads and pizza bases. Their latest creation is Sprouted Sunflower Paleo Bread, which is absolutely delicious. They have a great Food Show special too (see below).
  • CHIA – a beverage made from 90% organic hydrated chia seeds in Nelson, NZ. My favourite flavours are Blackcurrant & Apple, Feijoa & Guava and Mango & Coconut.
  • Fix & Fogg – three words: Honey Peanut Butter!
  • Kea Cookies – handmade gluten and dairy free biscuits, which are delicious. I love their Hokey Pokey Cookies!
  • KOHKOZ – a new stand at The Food Show this year, selling authentic Lebanese hummus, baba ghanoush, garlic dip, falafel and breads.
  • Little Bird Unbakery – one of my favourite clean-eating eateries in Auckland. LBU are selling their range of macarons, crackers and juices.
  • Sujon Berries – this company was started by two Kiwis, Sue and John (hence the name) who run Australasia’s first and longest berry company. You can buy their berries frozen, powdered, mixed and in capsules. My Mum swears by Sujon’s blackcurrant powder!
  • WaHiki – a new brand to The Food Show this year, WaHiki make creamy coconut ice-cream in a variety of flavours.

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Ceres Organics Healthy Hub Kitchen

A new zone this year, the Ceres Organics Healthy Hub Kitchen will introduce you to some of the tastiest and healthy ingredients to serve up delicious and nutritious meals, thanks to demonstrations by Nadia Lim, Megan May (Little Bird Organics), Lauren Glucina (Ascension Kitchen), Sarah Tanner (Greenleaf Organics) and Olivia Scott (The Raw Kitchen). There are three demonstrations each day (11am, 1pm and 3pm). Check out the timetable here.

Countdown Fresh Market

If you love fresh fruit and vegetables, then definitely check out this zone. You will find the Countdown stand – recipes and tastings for dishes like chorizo sausage bake, tasty soups and the freshest fruit and vegetables. Other stands include: AS Wilcox Inca Gold Potatoes, FreshWest capsicums, Kaipara Kumara, King Avocado, Leaderbrand Produce (love their beetroot), Turners and Growers (their JAZZ Apples are delicious) and my favourite stand, Meadows Mushrooms – be sure to try some of their homemade dumplings matched with kombucha!

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Street Food Alley

Returning to The Food Show this year, the Street Food Alley is a food lover’s paradise! It is the perfect zone to chill out, relax, and have lunch, before heading out back into the action! This year, there’s tacos, Vietnamese, burgers, dumplings, crepes, paella, salami and a food truck dedicated to cheese!

We didn’t have lunch until 2pm (!) and by this time, we were so full, that all I could eat was 4 x Akemi’s gyoza dumplings and an IPA beer from Good George Brewing Co.

Akemi’s Gyoza

Authentic Japanese dumplings in three flavours – pork and garlic chives (my favourite), chicken and prawn and miso and shiitake. All dumplings are served with a homemade ponzu sauce and chili oil. Price: 4 dumplings for $5, 9 dumplings for $10 and a frozen bag of 18 dumplings for $15.

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Melt

Raclette cheese. Need I say more? We didn’t actually purchase a meal from Melt, but I just had to share pictures of their raclette and cheese wheel, as below. Drooling!

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STANDS

Other stands which I loved (not mentioned above) – there were over 270 exhibitors!:

  • Jenny’s Kitchen Tamarind Chutney – one of my favourite NZ products and the most divine chutney you will ever eat. I love spreading it on pizza, adding it to my meals or just eating it out of the jar. This is a must try at the Food Show! Here’s a pizza recipe to get you drooling…
  • Fresh As – they make freeze dried fruit and powders, and they have two new products – Raspberry Panacotta and Black Doris Plum Panacotta! Simply add two ingredients and you’re good to go! Also, don’t forget to pick up one (or five) of their recipe cards.
  • Marcel’s – delicious homemade gluten free crepes, hotcakes and blini. These are so convenient as all you have to do is reheat and then add your toppings – I like chocolate spread, caramel sauce and pure maple syrup! They have a great show special – see below!
  • 1907 Water is naturally alkaline bottled artesian water and saved the day, when I realised I hadn’t packed a drink bottle! Hydration is key at The Food Show, plus it gets super hot and stuffy when you’re carrying loads of bags round!
  • The Pie Piper & Doornuts – run by the amazingly talented Danielle and Suzanne, who make American style pies, donuts and all things sweet and wonderful. They have a cute shop on K’Road serving the like. Think maple bacon donuts, s’mores tart, rocky road pie, key lime pie… yum!
  • House of Dumplings – I first tried these dumplings at the Seafood Festival two years ago. They are all handcrafted and taste heavenly. My favourites are the Korean Sesame Beef Sprouts and Nepalese Spiced Lamb! ($2.50 each).
  • Pic’s Peanut Butter – who doesn’t love Pic’s? It’s great on toast, on bagels, in smoothies, swirled through ice cream….
  • Queen Anne Chocolates – I love Queen Anne. Based in Christchurch, Queen Anne make a range of chocolates with fluffy marshmallow inside. Absolute heaven. Their latest creation is Marshmallow Bars, which I bought one too many of!
  • Silver Fern Farms – in my opinion, this is the best quality New Zealand lamb, beef and venison. It is however expensive, so I only have it on special occasions. They do have some great show specials. See below!
  • Zebra International – selling Freshpak Rooibos, which is my favourite tea!
  • Taste Magazine – I always update my subscription for Taste at The Food Show, because it is a great deal (12 issues for $58), which also includes a goodie bag!

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Raspberry Panacotta

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SHOW SPECIALS

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Below are a list of my favourite show specials for some great products:

– Jenny’s Kitchen Tamarind Chutney aka the most divine chutney you will ever eat! Special: 2 jars for $20. (Retail price: $14 each)
– Meadows Mushrooms have a great special! 3 for $5 for their Chef’s choice mixed mushroom medley. (Retail price: $5.49 each – such a steal!)
– Fresh As are selling their freeze dried fruits and powders. Special: 4 x new panacotta powder mix for $10.
– Little Bird Unbakery are selling their macaroons and crackers for $10 each, otherwise 2 for $15 and their grawnola for $15 each or 2 for $25. (Retail prices: $11.75 for macaroons, crackers around $11 and $17.90 for grawnola).
– Yocomo makes coconut yoghurt and is offering a great deal: 2 small yoghurts, 2 large yoghurts, a chiller bag and the chance to win a trip to Fiji!
KOHKOZ – authentic Lebanese hummus, baba ghanoush, garlic dip, falafel and breads. Special: 1 dip + 1 falafel pack + pita bread for $15
– Sujon Berries blackcurrant powder is great on porridge or cereal. Special: $30 for 180g pack, $60 for 500g pack. (Retail price for the 180g pack is $30!)
– CHIA drinks have a great special – 1 bottle for $4 or 3 bottles for $10 or 4 bottles for $12 (I went with the latter!)
– House of Dumplings aka one of my favourite dumpling brand are selling their special sauce pack (Chili Oil and Mum’s Sauce) – both for $25.
Fix & Fogg’s latest product is honey peanut butter and this, among all their other nut butters are on special for 2 for $10.
– Spring Blue make the most delicious haloumi and feta. Special: 3 products for $10.
Huntly & Palmers make the best crackers ever! Special: 2 products for $5, plus receive a free packet of buckwheat and millet rice crackers.
Inca Fe is all about coffee! You can purchase takeaway coffees for $4 each. Special: 2 bags of coffee for $14.
Pic’s Peanut Butter are selling their 380g peanut butter jars for 2 for $10, their almond and cashew butters for 2 for $15 and their 1kg jar for $15. (Retail prices are $6.50 for peanut butter and $18.50 for 1kg). AND, $11 for their cashew and almond butters, so this is a great special!
– Queen Anne Chocolates have a new product (as mentioned above) which is their Chocolate Marshmallow Bars. Amazing. Special: 2 bars for $5, 3 bars for $7 (otherwise they are $3 each)
– Gathered Game sell premium venison sticks and salami. Special: Sliced venison packs for $13 and deer sticks for $10.
 Zebra International – Rooibos Tea aka my favourite tea! Special: 40g pk $3.50 or 2 for $6, 80pk for $6 or 2 for $10.
– Bakeworks and Home St. are selling their pizza bases (2pk) for $6, bread for $6 and their new paleo bread for $8. (Retail prices are $8 for pizza bases and $10.50 for bread).
– Marcel’s make delicious, ready to eat hotcakes, crepes and blini. Special: 1 pack for $3, 2 packs for $5 (includes everything in their range). Great deal!
– Silver Fern Farms make quality New Zealand lamb, beef and venison. Special: 3 for $32 (includes 7 choices), 3 for $42 (includes 6 choices) and 3 for $52 (includes 3 choices).
– Ceres Organics offers a range of specials, including: 3 packets of rice crackers for $5, 3 packets coconut smiles for $6, 3 packets of seaweed for $5, and so much more!
 Taste Magazine is my favourite foodie mag and is offering a great deal on their subscription, $58 for 12 issues (2 year subscription), PLUS a goodie bag!
 Dish Magazine is also offering a subscription show special ($38 for six issues), which comes with a bottle of wine and a wonderful goodie bag.

If you have any questions about the products, feel free to ask! If you are heading to the show this weekend, have a fabulous time!

All the details…

The Food Show Auckland
Dates Thursday 27 July to Sunday 30 July 2017
Times Thursday to Saturday (10am to 6pm) and Sunday (10am to 5pm)
Venue ASB Showgrounds, 217 Green Lane West, Greenlane
Tickets Online ($26) otherwise at the gate ($28), $14 for under 12s, under 5s are free
Parking $10 at the gate (cash only), or you could Uber like we did!
Instagram / Facebook / Website

 

Georgieats’ Weekly Faves

Hello Readers!

I would love to introduce you to my new series, Georgieats’ Weekly Faves, featuring a lowdown of my favourite foodie products of the week (some of which are gifted and others I have purchased online or over the weekend). Enjoy!

Follow me on Instagram (@_georgieats_) to see me discover new eateries, try out new foodie places and products and see previews of blog posts!


Weekly Faves

Mango and Passionfruit Craft Yoghurts by The Collective

I am loving the two new tasty additions to The Collective’s Craft Yoghurt Range – Mango and Passionfruit!

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These yoghurts are made the old fashioned way – freshly warmed milk and active cultures are left to naturally set, resulting in a silky, thick and creamy yoghurt. Combine that with a fruity compote and you’ve got a winner!

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So far, I have eaten both yoghurts straight out of the tub and made a breakfast bowl (above), with the new Mango yoghurt, Weetbix, chopped mango and fresh passionfruit, in my new Coconut Bowl. Yum!

The Collective / Coconut Bowls

 

Caramilk & Cadbury Spin Wheel

Happy Belated World Chocolate Day!🎈

In the last few weeks, I received two bright purple boxes filled with Cadbury chocolate!

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The first box was filled with Caramilk. Originally created in 1994, this smooth white chocolate and caramel combination soon became a hit among kiwis. And now, it’s back for a limited time only! It’s deliciously creamy, milky and as my workmate said, tastes just like Russian fudge. Heaven!

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The second box was filled with all of Cadbury’s delicious Dairy Milk flavours, including Black Forest, Top Deck, Hazelnut, Caramilk and 3 new special edition flavours: Crazy 4 Caramel block, Mad 4 Mint block and Craving 4 Coffee block.

Cadbury are encouraging us kiwis to branch out and become flavour bravers! From now until 8th August, you can do just that! Look out for the Cadbury Flavour Wheel popping in and out of Auckland, stopping by Sylvia Park, Lynn Mall and Britomart for your chance to spin the wheel and dare to try a new flavour!

Cadbury


Cypriot Halloumi by Food Snob 

Last week, I was sent a beautiful food delivery, filled with Food Snob’s new Cypriot Halloumi, a range of their olives and artichoke hearts, homemade dukkah, extra virgin olive oil, a lemon, a red onion, garlic, rocket, basil and mint plants, a French baguette AND a Lodge cast iron pan – wow!

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For lunch one day, I seared Food Snob’s Cypriot Halloumi in my new Lodge cast iron pan and served it with sliced tomatoes, olives and rocket on an olive oil drizzled French baguette, topped with a sprinkling of dukkah and mint leaves. The perfect lunch!

I used a variation of this recipe, minus the salsa. It was incredibly tasty, fresh and very easy to prepare.

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There are so many great things about Food Snob’s Cypriot Halloumi – it takes little time to cook, its vegetarian friendly and you can do many things with it – grill it, fry it, bake it, put it on pizza, in tacos, in a sandwich, grate it on top of your spaghetti… literally everything! It’s also super tasty too!

Plus, last night, I made Food Snob’s Halloumi Vegetables Burgers for dinner, using the halloumi, capsicums, courgette, onion and sweet potato. Recipe link is here.

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The Food Snob

 

Flourless Dark Chocolate Cake Mix by The Caker

The Caker, aka Jordan Rondel is one of my idols (read more about that here). I have been following her journey from the beginning – the first time I tried one of her cakes was in 2013! Since then, Jordan has gone on to release two cookbooks, open up shop on K’Road, cater to many events, birthdays and other celebrations, hold baking demonstrations and launch her cake mix selection.

Her cake mixes are super awesome – they give you a chance to recreate The Caker cakes at home, are easy to prepare and you only have to add a few ingredients. The current mix list includes: Coconut Raspberry, Ginger Pear Pistachio and Lemon Plum, plus Apricot Almond Rosemary and Dutch Spice Dark Chocolate cookie mixes.

And now, there’s a new flavour! Introducing… Flourless Dark Chocolate Cake!

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Jordan says about her new Flourless Dark Chocolate Cake mix:  “Add eggs and butter for, literally, the best chocolate cake you’ll ever eat.” And I totally agree, this is, by far, my favourite cake and until now, it has been a secret recipe – so now at least I know what’s in the cake!

Stay tuned for this weekend – I’m making this cake for my sister’s birthday!

The Caker / Cake Mixes

 

Peanut Butter Ice Cream by Lewis Road Creamery x Pic’s Peanut Butter

I have a new favourite dessert.

A new favourite obsession.

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Yes you’ve guessed it, it’s Lewis Road Creamery’s new Peanut Butter Ice Cream in collaboration with Pic’s Peanut Butter🍦🥜 It’s the creamiest, dreamiest peanut butter ice cream you could ever hope for!

This new Peanut Butter Ice Cream is available in 470ml tubs – perfect for sharing between two!

Lewis Road Creamery / Pic’s Peanut Butter

 

M2Woman July/August 2017 Issue

Guys, I’m in a magazine! The M2Woman July/August magazine! So stoked to be featured in their article “6 of the Best NZ Food ‘Grams”! This has made my year!!!

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In the article, I share why I started my Instagram and my favourite places to frequent, along with 5 other amazing Instagrammers – Bunny Eats Design, Hadlow Girls, Wellingnoms, Forking Yum and Delish Bella.

Thanks to all of you for supporting my Instagram and blog and for reading my posts – eternally grateful!

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M2Woman Magazine

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Hope you all enjoyed my new feature and stay tuned for next week’s weekly faves!

Georgie

 

Allan Scott Generations Gewurztraminer matched with Kimchi & Tofu Dumplings

Two of my favourite winter foods are Kimchi and Dumplings.

A staple in Korean cuisine, Kimchi is made from salted and fermented vegetables, in particular napa cabbages and Korean radishes, with added seasonings and chilli.

Different variations of dumplings are eaten worldwide. In Auckland, it is easy to find a good dumpling, either in a restaurant, at a cheap eatery, and even in the supermarket. I have eaten plenty, believe you me, but have never actually made my own.

Fast forward to last week, I received a bottle of the brand-new Allan Scott Generations Gewürztraminer 2016 from Allan Scott Family Winemakers, which was one of the first independent wineries to establish in Marlborough, New Zealand in 1990.

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The Allan Scott Generations Gewürztraminer (dubbed ‘G’whizz’ by the Allan Scott team) is the newest addition to their exclusive Generations range, with delicate and floral flavours and aromas – think exotic spices, candied figs, turkish delight and lychees. The G’whizz is divine on its own yet truly brought to life when paired with exotic foods, such as sweet Middle Eastern dishes, spicy Asian fare, and of course, dumplings.

So, what better way to try the new G’whizz than by matching it with homemade Kimchi and Tofu Mandu (Dumplings) and a spicy Yangnyeomjang – Korean Seasoning Sauce!


Kimchi & Tofu Mandu (Dumplings)

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The dumpling mixture is very easy to prepare. I bought the tofu, vegetables and sauces from Fruit World Greenlane, and purchased the kimchi, toasted sesame seeds and Korean dumpling wrappers (25 in each packet) from Bok Mart in Mount Eden. I love the kimchi at Bok Mart – you can either buy the normal packaged kimchi or head to the middle of the shop (left side) where you’ll find a Korean lady selling her own homemade kimchi, which is packaged in plastic containers. We also bought some of her minced garlic, which ended up being spicy… but I’m not complaining!

I have used this recipe as my inspiration, however have made a few tweaks. This recipe makes about 48-55 dumplings, depending on the size of dumpling wrappers used. We originally budgeted for 45 dumplings and had mixture leftover. But never fear, we stir-fried this with extra tofu and vegetables and it was delicious!


INGREDIENTS

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For the dumplings:
2 packets of mandu (dumpling) wrappers
1 egg, beaten
2 oven trays, lined with baking paper
1-2 bamboo steamer baskets, lined with baking paper

For the filling:
2/3 of a 500g packet of mung bean sprouts
4 carrots, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, divided
Salt
1 block firm tofu
2 cups cabbage kimchi
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
1 leek, thinly sliced
1/2 white onion, finely minced
2 tablespoons finely minced garlic
1 teaspoon finely minced ginger (or grated)
1 teaspoon brown sugar
A pinch of black pepper
2 eggs, beaten

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For the Yangnyeomjang – Korean Seasoning Sauce:
Makes 1/2 cup

6 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 or 2 teaspoons gochugaru (Korean red pepper powder) or 1 or 2 teaspoons of chilli flakes
2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds, crushed or whole
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
1 spring onion, chopped

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Adjust quantities to suit your taste.

 

PREPARATION

1. Boil the bean sprouts with 1 cup of water until tender, for about 15 minutes. Rinse under cold water and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Coarsely chop and squeeze out any excess liquid.

2. While the bean sprouts are boiling, prepare the carrots, tofu, and kimchi.

3. Saute the carrots with 1 teaspoon of the sesame oil and a pinch of salt until tender, for about 2 minutes.

4. Place the tofu in a cheesecloth or dish towel and squeeze out the excess liquid.

5. Coarsely chop the kimchi and squeeze out the excess liquid. (Don’t let the kimchi juice go to waste – save it for soups and sauces).

6. In a mixing bowl, combine the bean sprouts, carrots, tofu, kimchi, spring onions, leek, onion, garlic, ginger, brown sugar, black pepper, a pinch of salt, and the remaining teaspoon of sesame oil. Mix and mash together (hands work best), taste, and adjust seasonings if necessary. Add the 2 beaten eggs and mix well.

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7. To assemble the dumplings, place about 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of each wrapper. (Make sure not to overfill, or the dumplings may leak in cooking.) Dip your fingertip in the beaten egg and trace the edge of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over to make a half-circle and pinch the edges together to seal. Place on oven trays (lined with baking paper), before transferring to the steamer basket.

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8. Line the bottom of your bamboo steamer basket with baking paper. Place the dumplings in the steamer. Find a pot/pan that your steamer will fit in snugly. Fill the pot/pan with water and bring to the boil. Once the water has reached the simmering point, place the steamer over or in the pot. Steam dumplings for 8-10 minutes.

9. Transfer dumplings to a platter, and serve with the yangnyeomjang sauce for dipping, and a glass of chilled G’whizzEnjoy!

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For more information about the new Allan Scott Generations Gewurztraminer and Allan Scott Family Winemakers, check out their website here.

This is a not a sponsored post, however the new Allan Scott Generations Gewurztraminer was gifted to me by Allan Scott Family Winemakers. All opinions are (and always will be) my own.

The Nightingale, Auckland

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Last weekend, I dined at Auckland’s newest pop up, focused on serving craft beer, gourmet comfort food and providing top notch entertainment, including live bands, DJs and comedy. Introducing The Nightingale.

This new craft beer pop up bar is situated in the Viaduct, between Danny Doolans and Soul Bar & Bistro. Its great location means stunning views of the sail boats and harbour, making it the perfect spot for lunch, dinner and after work drinks.

We loved the bright and funky decor as you walk in and the feature wall of artsy Nightingales – rare birds which sing both day and night. Hence the name The Nightingale, as this restaurant and bar is open all day and almost all night!

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The atmosphere is buzzing too, particularly on the upstairs outdoor balcony. I highly recommend sitting up top if you can get a spot – the views are stunning, plus the bar opens out onto the balcony. #winning. If balconies are not your style, then you can also sit outside on the ground level (complete with wood fire burners for cold wintery nights) or inside at the bar, at funky tables or in colourful booths.

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Now, onto the beer and food!

We ordered two beers – Jupiler (from Belgium) and Speights Gold Medal. While they are not craft beers, they were still great choices, in terms of price, and perfect for our very sunny Saturday afternoon.

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We loved the food menu, which is designed to be matched with their beers. Our waitress described the food as gourmet comfort food. And it is. Platters to share, burgers with fries, poutine, mac ‘n’ cheese, Belgian waffles with fried chicken, duck fat potatoes and for dessert, Grandma’s chocolate cake and key lime pie.

While I was set on ordering the Southern Chicken n’ Waffle, we couldn’t go past their Burger Platter ($65) – your choice of 8 small versions of their burgers, plus a giant size of poutine on the side. Yum.

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Burger options included:

  • Flame Grilled Angus Beef Burger with tomato, lettuce, pickles and a surprising spicy mustard aioli

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  • Buttermilk Soaked Southern Fried Chicken with lettuce, avocado and chipotle mayo

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  • Manuka Smoked Pulled Pork with Tennessee whiskey sauce, crispy shallots, bread and butter pickled cabbage and red onion

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  • Tabasco Brined Oyster Po Boy breaded in cornmeal on a tender hoagie with lettuce, tomato and homemade aioli

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  • Marinated Portobello, Roasted Red Pepper and Artichoke, with a lovely olive tapenade and The Nightingale’s own parmesan aioli

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We ordered 2 x Vegetarian, 2 x Oyster Po Boy, 2 x Buttermilk Fried Chicken, 1 x Angus Beef and 1 x Pulled Pork. There was a bit of a wait for the burger platter and poutine, however it was worth it. We loved the presentation and the burgers were too cute!

Surprisingly, the waitress mixed up our order. We received two pork burgers and were missing the beef. When we explained to her, she rushed back to the kitchen and two mini beef burgers were made, at no extra charge. So, we ended up eating 5 mini burgers each, plus a mountain of fries. I am not complaining!

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Our favourites out of the five burgers were the Manuka Smoked Pulled Pork (for its killer Tennessee whiskey sauce and tender pulled pork), the Tabasco Brined Oyster Po Boy (because, well, oysters in a burger!) and the Marinated Portobello, Roasted Red Pepper and Artichoke (a great vegetarian option, with huge chunks of vegetables).

The Poutine, however, was another story. Great fries and stringy cheese curd, but the let-down was the gravy. I imagined it would be a thick beef gravy like the poutines I have had before, but it was watery, and sat at the bottom of the dish, and we just couldn’t dip our fries into it. Frustrating!

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The Nightingale has the odd thing to improve on… the Poutine?… but overall, the beer selection is extensive, the location is perfect with stunning views, the service is welcoming and efficient, and we loved the idea of comfort food – ideal for the upcoming cold wintery nights. But pop in quick, as it is only open for six months!

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* I received a voucher for The Nightingale, courtesy of the restaurant, however all opinions are (and always will be) my own.

The Nightingale

Open Monday to Sunday, 11.30am till late
Address 204 Quay Street, Viaduct Auckland
Notes Extensive beer selection / takes bookings / the upstairs balcony has the best views of the harbour
Instagram / Facebook

The Nightingale Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

BAO, London

I am Gua Bao crazy.

Crazy for Taiwanese steamed buns.

Soft, fluffy buns filled with mouthwatering ingredients.

This is BAO.

While in London last year, I made a beeline for BAO, an upmarket Taiwanese eatery located in the Soho area.

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The restaurant is small, yet cosy and staff are friendly and efficient. BAO doesn’t take bookings, instead you have to wait in line… at a designated spot across the street, in front of a man eating bao. (Laughs).

When I arrived for lunch on a weekday, the place was packed. Luckily, the service is quick (without the feeling of being rushed), so I ended up waiting in line for only 10 minutes.

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But, waiting in line for their bao is worth it.

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Their menu is simple. It consists of Taiwanese small plates – 9 dishes, 5 bao, 4 sides and one dessert bao. When ordering, you simply tick the box next to the dish you want and then hand it over to the wait staff.

While I wanted to order all 19 dishes, I only ordered three – the Classic Pork Bao and Taiwanese fried chicken, and for dessert, the Fried Horlicks Ice Cream Bao.

The Classic Pork Bao was perfect – a fluffy pillow-like bun of goodness, filled with pulled pork, fermented peanut powder and coriander. Melt in your mouth!

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The Taiwanese Fried Chicken with hot sauce was also very good – finger licking good. Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside.

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Taiwanese Fried Chicken

But my favourite dish was definitely the Fried Horlicks Ice Cream Bao – a must order when dining at BAO. It is a scoop of creamy malt ice cream between two sweet buns. Simple, but done well. Plus, it looks super cute!

As of last year, I had not seen a dessert bao on an Auckland menu. Now you can get them at Auckland eatery Po’Brothers. Yay!

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Fried Horlicks Ice Cream Bao

BAO is the creme de la creme of bao. I would highly recommend eating here if you are in London. I cannot wait to go back, just so I can try more of BAO’s creations!

BAO

Open Monday to Sunday, various times (check their website for times)
Address 53 Lexington St, Carnaby, London
Notes No reservations
Instagram / Facebook

Bao Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Meat Fish Wine

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Last week, I was invited to dine at Meat Fish Wine to try their five course degustation menu, matched with local and international wines. We had a fantastic night, thanks to the beautiful food, wine, ambience and service.

Meat Fish Wine is located on the corner of O’Connell and Chancery Streets, making it a great central spot for dining. The menu changes seasonally, focusing on fresh New Zealand produce, in particular meat and fish, and it has one of the largest wine lists in New Zealand. With over 500 wines to choose from, hand-picked by a Sommelier, you are truly spoilt for choice.

Walking in, the interior is stunning. We loved the inviting bar area with plush seating, the large heritage windows overlooking O’Connell Street, the open plan kitchen (with adjoining chef’s table), the unique bathroom (don’t leave without taking a peak!), the luxurious private dining rooms (named Waiheke, Rangitoto and Kawau) and most impressive of all, the chandelier display of over 2,000 Riedel wine glasses shaped to reflect a Hei Matau or traditional fish hook.

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Chandelier display of over 2,000 wine glasses shaped to reflect a Hei Matau

Our degustation menu consisted of three starters (fish, venison and seafood tortellini), a main (lamb) and desserts. Every dish was beautifully presented in ceramic bowls/on plates and a highlight was that all the hot dishes arrived on warm plates… definitely makes a difference!

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We started with a warm bread roll and horopito butter – heavenly! Followed by the Kingfish Ceviche with tiger’s milk, chilli, coconut, lime and salmon caviar, matched with a 2014 Meßmer Feinherb Halbtrocken Riesling from Pflaz, Germany.

A simple, yet refreshing dish, with punchy flavours! It is a little spicy, however if you reserve a few sips of your riesling for the end, you will finish with a lovely sweet aftertaste and the spice magically disappears…

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Kingfish Ceviche with tiger’s milk, chilli, coconut, lime and salmon caviar

The next starter we enjoyed was the Raukumara Venison Carpaccio with beetroot, parsnip, celeriac, watercress, hazelnut and sherry dressing, matched with a 2015 Pyramid Valley Calrossie Pinot Noir from Malborough.

A well-presented dish, with many different elements, representing earthy and winter tones. We particularly enjoyed the crunchy parsnip on top. The Pinot Noir was also a perfect match – very smooth!

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Raukumara venison carpaccio with beetroot, parsnip, celeriac, watercress, hazelnut and sherry dressing

Our favourite dish of the night was the Prawn Tortellini with crayfish bisque, fennel, crustacean oil and lemon, matched with a 2015 Pizzolato Pinot Grigio from Venice.

The bisque was lovely (the hint of brandy gave it that special touch) and the flavours of the prawn tortellini superb. We also savoured the sweetness and crispness of the Pinot Grigio.

The only glitch with the prawn tortellini was the dish it was served in – a very large bowl! While I have no complaints about the bowl itself, it would have been much easier to eat the tortellini if it was served in a lower bowl or plate.

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Prawn tortellini with crayfish bisque, fennel, crustacean oil and lemon

For our main, we loved their Silere Alpine Merino lamb rump, served with a potato and parsnip gratin, pea puree and port wine jus, matched with a 2015 Te Mata ‘Estate’ Syrah from Hawkes Bay.

The lamb rump was perfectly cooked, juicy and tender. It is the most delicious piece of meat I have ever eaten – every bite was heaven. I also loved the creamy potato and parsnip gratin, plus the Syrah was a perfect match!

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Silere Alpine Merino lamb rump, served with a potato and parsnip gratin, pea puree and port wine jus

Last but not least, dessert. We indulged in their ultra-smooth Lemon Posset, with Raspberry Sorbet and Ginger Crunch, which was a lovely sweet finish to a beautiful meal.

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Lemon Posset, topped with Raspberry Sorbet and a sprinkling of Ginger Crunch

And one of the best desserts I have eaten this year, Warm Chocolate Brownie with Maple and Walnut Ice Cream and Italian Meringue. Every mouthful was melt in your mouth, thanks to the decadently rich and gooey brownie, chocolate discs, smooth maple and walnut ice cream and perfectly piped meringue. Highly recommend this dish to all dessert lovers out there!

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Warm Chocolate Brownie with Maple and Walnut Ice Cream and Italian Meringue

I can’t recall which dessert wines were matched with our Lemon Posset and Warm Chocolate Brownie, as we were too engrossed in devouring them!

Overall, we were very impressed by the food, wine and service at Meat Fish Wine. I will definitely re-visit as it is the perfect place to have a drink at the bar, enjoy two or three dishes from their express lunch menu or indulge in their degustation menu, paired with a few of their wonderful wines.

* I was invited to dine at Meat Fish Wine, courtesy of the restaurant, however all opinions are (and always will be) my own.

Meat Fish Wine
Open Tuesday to Friday for Lunch (12pm to 4pm), for Dinner (5pm till late), Saturday for Dinner (5pm till late), Closed Sundays and Mondays
Address Corner of O’Connell and Chancery Streets, Auckland
Notes Takes bookings, degustation, wine flights and express lunch available
Instagram / Facebook

Meat Fish Wine Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Auckland Food Guide by georgieats

Hello readers!

I get asked almost every day what my favourite dinner spots are, where to have breakfast in Auckland CBD, where I go food shopping and of course, what are the best desserts in Auckland. So, I have decided to start my own Auckland Food Guide.

Below is my ultimate guide to all things food related, featuring my favourite eateries in Auckland and eateries I want to try, along with coffee spots, desserts, food trucks, favourite cocktail bars, food related activities, markets and shopping.

I will keep the list up to date to include new openings, and will link each place to either my Instagram, my blog posts or my favourite Auckland food blogger’s blog posts or Instagram posts.

Enjoy!


BREAKFAST AND BRUNCH

  • Winona Forever – I love their Insta-famous Eton Mess French Toast, buckwheat hotcakes and anything from their amazing food cabinet! Check out my post here.
  • Major Sprout – a must try is their EPIC buttermilk pancakes with mascarpone, butterscotch, marshmallows, candy floss, freeze dried fruit AND unlimited Noble maple syrup! Need I say more?! Check out my post here.
  • The Garden Shed – recently tried this place for #NZBloggers brunch club and loved it! Try their breakfast board or their famous burger!
  • Catroux – I have only ever head great things about this cafe! Check out this post by Thea (of Simply Theora)
  • Raw Power – head here for a vegetarian breakfast – my favourite is their EPIC French Toast! Check out my post here.
  • Odette’s Eatery – beautiful food, setting and service. Check out this post by The Hadlow Girls (of What’s Yummy)
  • Bestie – another brunch place to indulge in your sweet tooth, namely their hotcakes with toffee apple ice cream. Check out this post by Tiffany (of Heartshrooms).
  • The Smoothie Bowl – popping up on my Instagram feed a lot, this smoothie bowl place looks amazing! Definitely heading here next time I’m on the shore.
  • L’oeuf – probably the most Instagrammed dish on Auckland’s foodie Instagram, the ‘Nest‘ with sunflower seed crumbed soft-boiled eggs, in a filo nest with beetroot ketchup, feta and a rocket salad. Another eatery I am yet to try!
  • Goodness Gracious – a bagelry and coffee joint which has just opened up in Parnell! So far, I have only tried The Brekkie Bagel, but next on my list is the Pulled Pork and the Haloumi number. Blog post coming soon!
  • Bowl & Arrow – another delicious smoothie bowl place. Currently located at Orakei Bay Village, but they are opening another store in Parnell soon (hopefully September!)

COFFEE / HOT CHOCOLATES

  • Le Chef$3 large flat whites, all day, every day
  • Cova Cafe – Gravity beans / consistently good coffee, the fluff is perfect and it is always extra hot
  • Bones – Coffee Supreme beans, plus check out the skull feature wall
  • Miann – the first of its kind in New Zealand, with a special Valrhona Hot Chocolate menu, consisting of 8 different flavours.
  • Vulcan Lane Bagels – eighthirty beans, always perfect!
  • Major Sprout – serving Flight Coffee, which is creamy and delicious.
  • Best Ugly Bagels – their main jam is bagels, but their Havana coffee is amazing
  • Rosie – love their Valrhona hot chocolates! Check out my post here.
  • Marua Road Cafe – very good coffee (Jack’s) and the cutest latte art I have ever seen.
  • Cornwall Park Cafe – deconstructed mochas, complete with separate coffee, milk, chocolate, marshmallows, chocolate fish and flakes. Sounds like heaven! Check out this post by Tiffany (of Heartshrooms)

SWEETS / DESSERTS

  • Giapo – the BEST ice cream in New Zealand, thanks to Giapo Grazioli. My all time favourite flavours are Giapo Buono, Siamu Popo and Hokey Pokey. Click the links below to see Giapo’s different flavours:
  • Miann – my go-to dessert bar! My favourites include their ever changeable gateaux, plated desserts, handmade bonbons, Valrhona hot chocolates and ice cream (love the s’mores). Check out my post here.
  • The Pie Piper & Doornuts – American style pies and donuts, delivered straight to your door! I LOVE their maple bacon donut – tastes just like pancakes. Mmmmm. Check out my post here.
  • Milse – Auckland’s first dessert bar, selling gateaux, macarons, plated desserts and my favourite ice cream on a stick – Bombe Alaska, with the sorbet flavour inside changes according to season – yummy! Check out my post here.
  • Winona Forever – sweet sweet food cabinet heaven! Doughnuts. Lamingtons. Cheesecake Slice. Crossiants. Rocky Road. Brownie. Meringues. Check out my post here.
  • The Caker – looking for a celebration cake? The Caker is your answer. Beautiful handmade cakes, usually adorned with flowers. Also love their cake mixes! Check out my post here.
  • Vaniye – a French patisserie located in Parnell serving beautiful gateaux and crunchy baguettes. Check out this post by Amy (of My Dining Journey)
  • The Dairy – Kapiti ice cream sandwiches and sodas topped with fairy floss!
  • Moustache – who could say no to cookies and milkshakes? My favourite cookies in Auckland!
  • Little & Friday – head here for doughnuts, filled with creme patisserie and raspberry coulis – the best in Auckland!!!
  • Cibo – try their Fry-pan brownie pan dessert, with raspberries, raspberry marshmallows and butterscotch raspberry ripple ice cream, which recently won an award in the 2017 Metro Restaurant Awards.
  • Gerome – a must try is their Loukoumades aka Greek doughnuts, served with a perfect coffee ice cream, nutella sauce and hazelnuts. Check out my post here.
  • Petal Cupcakes – they taste just like the real thing! With flavours like mango, salted caramel, red velvet and espresso, they are guaranteed to satisfy your sweet cravings!

LUNCH

  • &Sushi – my favourite lunch place in Auckland. My favourite dishes include their Sashimi Don, Yakisoba Noodles and Kimchi Pork Donburi. Their sushi is beautiful  too! Check out my post here.
  • Lucky Buddha – an all time favourite, serving Japanese, Korean, Thai and Filipino food. Check out my post here.
  • Raw Power – head here for awesome vegetarian food, in particular the salads, corn fritters, tofu sandwich, falafel and pumpkin curry soup.
  • Bird on A Wire – fresh and delicious salads, served with homemade rotisserie chicken – delish!
  • The Vodka Room– a 2017 newcomer, serving Russian inspired cuisine. I love their “$20 Rush in Lunchboard” which is Russian antipasti with a twist. Check out my video of it here.
  • Scarecrow – I love their $10 soup and salad specials, plus their iced drinks made with Little Island ice cream.
  • Bannsang or Faro – for a cheap Korean lunch (bibimbap!!!) in Auckland CBD
  • Revive Vegetarian Cafe – delicious salads, soups, meals and breakfast dishes that change weekly! Check out my post here.
  • Kushi – a great Japanese restaurant in Auckland’s CBD. Nice ambience, good service, variety of dishes, good lunch special, plus on Friday nights, they do a short drum performance, which is very cool! Check out this, this and this.
  • Mamak – my favourite Malaysian joint in Auckland. Love their beef rendang, curry chicken and char kway teow. Check out this post by Sophia Joy (of Joy & Serenity)
  • Little Bird Unbakery – two locations across Auckland, dine in at Ponsonby or get takeaway from Britomart. Delicious raw food, including breakfast and lunch dishes, smoothies, desserts and more.
  • Poderi Crisci – located in Waiheke, Poderi Crisci serves the dreamiest lunch spreads. Check it out here.
  • The Nightingale – burgers, beers and music. What more could you want? Check out my post here.

COOL CHEAP EATS

  • Hello Mister – my new favourite Vietnamese in Auckland! Amazing rice paper rolls, noodle salads (so far, I have tried the lemongrass chicken and crispy pork), banh mi, beef pho and watermelon juice!
  • Chinoiserie – delicious Taiwanese street food. I recommend their Pork Belly Bao, Tofu Bao, Spicy Popcorn Chicken and any of their cocktails!
  • Best Ugly Bagels – the best, but definitely not ugly. My all time favourite is the tomato, mozzarella and basil.
  • Xuxu Dumpling & Bar – Cocktails, Dumplings and Dessert. Three of my favourite things. And three things that you will find at Xuxu, making it one of my favourite eateries in the city. Check out my post here.
  • Tiger Burger – awesome eatery, with top notch burgers and the best kimchi fries (omg!). In love. Check out my post here.
  • Ceremony – cool guys + cool burgers.
  • Vulcan Lane Bagels – you can’t go wrong with their Pastrami Melt Bagel, so delicious!
  • Dantes Pizzeria – my go to place for a mouthwatering margherita pizza!
  • Velvet Burger – Kiwi burger brand, love their vegetarian burger and hashies. Check out my post here.
  • Mexico – hands down the best fried chicken, perfectly spiced and crunchy! Also love their quesadillas, guacamole and shots of the 1800 coconut tequila.
  • Indochine Kitchen Express – cute takeaway spot serving delicious summer rolls, beef pho, papaya salad, beef stew and banh mi.
  • Flavour – for when you want a quick, cheap and yummy lunch. I love their ‘Flavour of the day’ for $5, my favourite day being Wednesday, because that means falafel!
  • Aroy Thai – super filing and tasty food, with most dishes priced under $15. I love their Pad Thai.
  • The Kimchi Project – a modern take on Korean cuisine which I’m loving! Especially their sodas, kimchi waffle fries and bao. Check out this post by Anna (of Anna’s Brunch Club)

COCKTAILS

  • The Vodka Room – love their espresso martinis!
  • Xuxu Dumpling & Bar – amazing cocktails, but my favourite is their passionfruit mocktail (it’s not on the menu, but just ask).
  • Soul Bar & Bistro – all of their cocktails are perfect, but of course, their espresso martini is my favourite!
  • Pilkingtons – again, love their espresso martinis
  • Frida’s Margaritas – 12 different margarita flavours – so far, I have only tried the Lychee and Salt, which was top notch!
  • Bellini Bar, Hiltontoberlone cocktails and espresso martinis are my favourites here.
  • Bedford Soda & Liquor – Instagram worthy cocktails! I once went to a cocktail masterclass at Bedford Soda and it was awesome – check out my post here.
  • White & Wongs –  I haven’t tried it yet, but my friend swears by their “Dragon Drop” cocktail with gin, vodka and elderflower liqueur.

DINNER

  • White & Wongs – my current favourite restaurant, which has absolutely amazing food! The first time, we indulged in their dumplings, edamame (with a killer sauce), pork belly bao, Korean spicy chicken bao and nashi pear iced teas 🌸 I will definitely be back!
  • Depot – owned and run by Al Brown, Depot is one of my favourites. I love their oysters, kingfish and potato skins! Check out my post here.
  • Federal Delicatessen – New York Jewish deli style food. My favourite dish? Their Montreal poutine with fries, cheese curd and gravy. Check out my post here.
  • Tok Tok – I first tried dishes at Tok Tok at last year’s Taste of Auckland. I haven’t been to their restaurant in Takapuna yet, but it’s high on my list. Check out this post about Tok Tok by Angela (of A Style Collector). Angela recommends the Steamed Buns, Crispy Hapuka Dry Red Curry and Wagyu Beef Brisket. All sound delicious!
  • Queens Cafe Bistro – the perfect hideaway in Auckland’s CBD, with a lovely restaurant setting, beautiful food and attentive service. Check out my post here.
  • Meat Fish Wine – Beautiful food, ambience and service, plus over 500 wines to choose from! Check out my post here.
  • Po Brothers – Asian fusion cuisine, with dishes like pork belly, prawn sashimi, chicken karaage and deep fried dessert bao. Check out this post here by Tiffany (of Heartshrooms)
  • Beirut – traditional Lebanese food, my favourite dishes being the Smoked Yoghurt Labna with scorched flatbread and the Merguez (spicy sausage). Check out my post here.
  • Burger Burger – never fails to amaze me! Order a few burgers, a side of broccoli and potato skins. And a peanut butter thickshake. And, if you are dining at their Newmarket or Takapuna branches, then you will want to save room for dessert – ice cream sandwiches!!! Check out my post here.
  • Masu by Nic Watt – Japanese fine dining. Check out this post here by Sophia Joy (of Joy & Serenity).
  • Soul Bar & Bistro – fantastic food, service, atmosphere and surroundings. Check out my post here.
  • Tao – I’ve heard that this is the new go-to place for dumplings. Check out this post about Tao by Genie (of Bunny Eats Design).
  • Oh Calcutta – my favourite Indian in Auckland. I recommend their Chicken Tikka Masala, Naan, Mango Lassi and Tandoor Chicken.
  • Blue Breeze Inn – love their crispy pork belly bao and cocktails in coconuts
  • Amano – Italian flare, serving handmade pasta, breads and pastries etc.
  • Cafe Hanoi – another favourite restaurant in Britomart, serving delicious Vietnamese food. Check out my post here.
  • Culprit – run by Kyle Street, former chef at Depot and serving yum cha style food. Check out this post about Culprit by Carli (of The Enthusiastic Cook)
  • Eight at The Langham – the best buffet in Auckland, featuring eight different food stations. Definitely something for everyone on the menu. Oh and there’s a chocolate fountain! Check out my post here.
  • Gerome – the latest newcomer to Parnell’s dining scene, serving beautiful modern Greek food. Check out my blog post here.
  • Pasta e Cuore – a colleague has dined here and loved it. Her favourite dishes were the Tagliatelle BologneseSpaghetti alla chitarra alla Carbonara and Spaghetti alla chitarra al Gorgonzola. Great service too.
  • Oaken – open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Oaken serves lovely seasonal food, with dishes I wouldn’t normally go for, like Pumpkin Gnocchi!
  • Prego – a fine dining Italian restaurant, serving traditional Italian cuisine. Check out this post about Prego by Sophia (of Joy & Serenity).

FOOD TRUCKS / STANDS

  • Judge Bao – one of my favourite food stands, serving mouthwatering bao (I love their pork belly bao and also the mapo tofu). Owners Debbie and Jamie are the sweetest too! Check out my post here.
  • Wise Boys Burgers – amazing vegan burgers, my favourite being their Kumara and Moroccan Spiced Patty Burger – to die for!
  • The Rolling Pin – traditional dumplings, served with a fresh and crunchy Asian salad. I love their Beef Cheek Dumplings.
  • Temaki Truck – sushi served in cones, filled with flavours like fresh salmon or tuna. They also serve seriously good karaage chicken.
  • Nitro Cow – so stoked to have finally tried Nitro Cow aka gelato made with liquid nitrogen!!! Love their chocolate and coconut combination.
  • House of Dumplings – popping up at events all over Auckland, as well as having a permanent spot at La Cigale French Market. My favourite flavours are their Korean Sesame Beef, Nepalese Spiced Lamb and Crystal Prawn.
  • The Lucky Taco – my first favourite food truck, serving amazing tacos, plus owners, Sarah and Otis, are so lovely!
  • Minty B Ice Creamery – delicious soft serve with EPIC toppings!
  • Soul Boul – New Zealand’s first mobile smoothie bowl truck, which has been popping up at events all over Auckland this year, including the Go Green Expo and the Vegan Food Fair.
  • Eggloo – egg waffles in cones, filled with ice cream and toppings. My favourites are their Peanut Butter Chocolate and Vanilla with Sprinkles and Marshmallows!

FOOD ACTIVITIES

  • UberEATS – the newish UberEATS app allows you to order your favourite dishes online from over 70 participating eateries, which will then be delivered straight to your home/office. My favourite eateries include &Sushi, Burger Boy, Best Ugly Bagels and Miann. Check out my post here.
  • Pasta Wednesday – my friend Carli over at Pasta Wednesday makes fresh pasta every week, delivered to your home or workplace! The pasta is seriously good and very easy to prepare!
  • Auckland Food Tours – a chance to try new dishes and learn about different cultures, all led by an experienced guide. Check out this post and this post about their Chinese food and culture tours by Bri Dimattina.
  • Pasta Fresca Workshop at Pasta e Cuore – learn how to make fresh handmade pasta in a two hour workshop. Check out this post about the workshop by Michelle (of The Foodie Inc)

FOOD MARKETS / SHOPPING

  • La Cigale French Market – my favourite market in Auckland. I may be biased as it is just around the corner from my house, but it seriously has it all. French macarons, tarts and gateaux, crepes, fresh juices, smoothies, gozleme, smoked salmon, Turkish dips and wraps, paella, dumplings, freshly baked pastries and breads, fresh fruit and vegetables, wonderful cheeses… and loads more. Check out my post here.
  • Avondale Market – a wonderful mix of Asian and Polynesian food and culture, held every Sunday. Check out this post about the Avondale Market by Carli (of The Enthusiastic Cook)
  • Good For Store – an organic wholefoods refillery, with products like pre-made muesli, lentils, rice, crackers, kombucha, spices and nuts. Check out this post by Laura (of Bitch Peas Blog)
  • Clevedon Farmers Market – coming soon!
  • Coatesville Farmers Market – coming soon!
  • Sabato – my one stop shop for Valrhona chocolate, Italian, French and Spanish products, beautiful cheeses, olives and garlics!
  • Farro Fresh – sells all the goods, including The Lucky Taco Kits, Culley’s Hot Sauce, Joshua’s Ice Cream, Garage Project beer, Goodness Kitchen Smoothie Packs, Kohu Road Ice Cream, and amazing cheese and chorizo!
  • Milly’s Kitchen Shop – my favourite kitchen shop in Auckland!