There has been a lot of talk about New Zealand food stories recently. About the connective power of food and its potential to foster a deeper sense of place and identity. But how do we tell these stories and who gets to tell them? And what of the ‘doing’ part of food – the sharing, growing, eating, transporting – and its immediate role in our lived experience?
New Zealand’s first ever Organic Wine Week (17-23 September 2018) will see organic wine producers teaming up with six of the country’s leading restaurants – The Grove in Auckland, Shepherd in Wellington, Bistronomy in Hawke’s Bay, Arbour in Blenheim, Gatherings from Christchurch and Sherwood in Queenstown – to deliver some exciting organic wine and food experiences.
Tracy Whitmey meets the star of New Zealand’s young winemaking talent.
Every time I visit Wellington I leave disappointed that I have not been able to cram enough in. Labelled the ‘coolest little capital in the world’ by Lonely Planet and a ‘locavore’s dream’ by Vogue, Wellington’s hospitality scene seems to be overflowing with energetic creators and collaborators.
Gas barbecues have long reigned supreme in New Zealand, while smoke has been reserved for kahawai or trevally, but things are changing. Low ’n’ slow barbecue is a burgeoning part of New Zealand’s food scene and some of the country’s finest, most innovative restaurants are cooking atop raw flame and permeating their food with smoke.
Every Raglanite knows the place to start off the day is at Raglan Roast on Volcom Lane. Join the long queue of caffeine-cravers who line up for their hit of coffee, which is roasted fresh on site. If you peer inside you might spy their roasting contraptions and catch a whiff of newly toasted beans in the air.
Kelli Brett confronts the part of the paddock-to-plate process that most of us would rather ignore. Allan Brunt, Boning room senior supervisor, Alliance Lorneville.“This is the part where it gets tricky, the part where most people disconnect. Why doesn’t anyone want to talk about the fact that eating meat means that animals are killed?”
I’m ashamed to admit that during my first two years in New Zealand, despite a number of trips to Queenstown, I had never thought about visiting Wanaka. It was suggested I pick up a hire car at Queenstown airport and make the drive across.
Clad in a t-shirt emblazoned with the words “In cod we trust”, Fleur Sullivan carefully tears open large pieces of freshly harvested kelp, deftly fashioning them into bags into which she’ll soon stuff whole crayfish, sea perch, and, of course, the venerable blue cod hailed on her top.
Imagine a magnificent day out tasting flavours and ingredients that you might never have tried before, mixing with people who are passionate and knowledgeable about premium food, and along the way hearing inspiring stories of determination, ingenuity, risk and innovation?
Sauvignon Blanc, salmon and salt. It’s often what comes to mind when you think of Marlborough. Of course it is much more diverse than that. From the idyllic northern Marlborough Sounds to the beginnings of the Kaikoura Ranges in the south, the vast, wide plain of the Wairau Valley makes for varied geography and a wealth of wine, food and experiences.
Trips to Australia now find me constantly comparing their restaurant offerings to what we have in New Zealand, trying to get a measure on what we do well and what opportunities might exist to increase our rating as a must-visit culinary destination.
This is the third year in which Cuisine has been media partner for Plate of Origin, an annual competition showcasing chefs from across New Zealand. Hosted in Manawatu, seven local restaurants sought a partnership with a renowned restaurant in a region allocated to them at random.