For those of us with an overdeveloped interest in breakfast, lunch and dinner, the opportunity to travel brings with it a chance to explore the tastes and textures of a tourist hotspot by putting you right at the heart of the eating and drinking action. This is by no means a definitive list of the best bites of New Plymouth, but I can guarantee that if you are from out of town and not sure where to spend your dollars, these establishments are some very good places to start...
I hadn’t expected a short flight to Tauranga to have me feeling like I’d stepped into a mini European vacation.
With its Gothic architecture and stunning coastal landscapes, Dunedin has always had a quirky urban charm, but there is a sense of change in the air for the local restaurant industry with professional kitchens sizzling and a new wave of chefs stepping up to the pass.
During my first trip to Ōamaru I joined a substantial group of people milling around on Harbour St. While in full chat mode I glanced down to see a tiny penguin waddling past; it wound its way through the crowd of ankles on that glorious road of stunning limestone buildings, with no one except me seeming to think this was unusual at all.
Wellington. Recently opened by Yu Group in the building that formerly housed The Bresolin, Cinderella offers elaborately conceived snacks in its covered courtyard bar and modern European cuisine in its upstairs bistro.
Napier. P&S creates classical French dishes in a humble cottage setting, in one of the so-called Six Sisters along Napier’s Marine Parade. While both service and setting may feel sufficiently homely and familial for certain men to rock up in shorts, the dining is distinctly hoity-toity.
Auckland. The kitchen serves well-conceived dishes that range from some spectacular snacks through to an impressive offering of dry-aged steaks, accompanied by a drinks list that includes original cocktails and some seriously good wines.
While Parmigiano Reggiano is the king of cheeses, Massimo’s burrata is the undisputed queen – the Marilyn Monroe of mozzarella.
A scratchy phone line to Rob Beard is explained by the fact he’s on a high inland farm in Hawke’s Bay inspecting farming stock; he’s also overjoyed by the fact that he’s just spotted three deer.
I discovered sauerkraut quite late,” says Kelli Walker from Forage & Ferment, an artisan producer of sauerkrauts.
“Call me Betsy, that is what everyone in Wellington and New Zealand calls me,” says Betsaida Rivas Teutenberg.