This captivating furniture is sure to become a conversation starter

There are few materials more beautiful, enduring and versatile than glass, and one firm that specialises in putting this medium to good use is Reflex. Debuting their striking furniture designs in New Zealand for the first time thanks to local interior aficionados Sarsfield Brooke, the showroom has just received a range of the Italian brand’s unique pieces. Included in the delivery is the fanciful Aenigma coffee table, bringing its own sense of fun to the occasion with a curvy matte black base; the Foulard side tables and console seemingly suspended from the air like a tablecloth with no sense of gravity; the Leaf lamp, a delicate pendant comprising a myriad glass pieces bearing a similar sense of weightlessness; along with many more pieces drawing us in to the Parnell design mecca in order to embellish our home.

The new Reflex collection can be viewed at the Sarsfield Brooke showroom, Level 1, 165 The Strand, from Thursday 2nd March.

Sarsfield Brooke

165 The Strand
Parnell

(09) 377 1502

sarsfieldbrooke.co.nz

Design


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A new bar is putting the Win-Win back into Ponsonby Road

Your Saturday night is about to get a little bit more outrageous.

Dressed in red and adorned with a neon sign, the latest newcomer to the Ponsonby Road strip is the wild, younger sibling of The Whiskey. Popping up right next door and more akin to something you would find on K’ Road, Win-Win is loud, proud and bringing with it the lights of Las Vegas.

Once inside you’ll realise that there is nothing understated about this retro cocktail bar. Painted bananas decorate the walls and images of the City of Sin embellish the bar.

The cocktail menu brings to mind scenes from Fear and Loathing with names like ‘Smoke & Mirrors’ and ‘Players Punch’ and we’re told it will be ever evolving. Not to mention, experimental Jellyologist Jessica Mentis is in charge of the alcohol-infused jelly bites. There’s a popcorn machine perched behind the bar, but if you’re after something a little more substantial, Il Buco has come to the party with arancini balls, potato croquettes and stuffed mushrooms.

With a mix of funk, boogie and retro disco to get you grooving, your Saturday night is about to get a little bit more outrageous.

Open Wednesday to Sunday, 5pm till late.

Win-Win

212 Ponsonby Road
Ponsonby

(09) 361 2667

www.winwinbar.co.nz

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Peer Gynt [recycled]
Picturing Asia: Double Take
Natalia Osipova & Guests
The Bone Feeder

Comedies, photojournalism, ballet and more — Auckland Arts Festival has something for all

The Auckland Arts Festival isn’t something you can easily ignore. The far-reaching celebration of all things art, performance and exhibition related is gearing up to smother our fair city (from 8th-26th March) with an endless number of cultural offerings — many of which you will have seen plastered up and touted around town. As wonderful as these more talked-about events will be, we’ve decided to scour the rest to bring you some of our more unassuming picks.

Mariachi with a twist
Who would have known that Mexicans have a thing for The Smith’s OG frontman, Morrissey? Well, they do. Enter Mexrrissey, a ‘six-piece super group’ whose talents have been carefully compiled by Mexico City DJ and producer Camilo Lara. Unfolding at the spiegel tent set to be erected in Aotea Square, the award-winning troupe will channel the English songwriter’s best hits, warping them into a vibrant repertoire of ranchera, mariachi and cha cha cha-themed interpretations with a whole lot of sass. Get tickets here.

Photojournalism at its finest
Enshrining two of the biggest names in photojournalism, Steve McCurry and world-renowned New Zealander Brian Brake, Picturing Asia: Double Take aims to juxtapose their respective styles in a study of complex narratives and stunning images at Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery. The objective, naturally, is to stimulate a conversation about how Asia is ‘pictured’ within an old history of the exotic thanks to these two pros having put the region’s cultural richness in the spotlight. Free entry.

Bad boy theatre 
Can you relate to the bad-boy way of life? Or, have a chronic problem with dating one too many? Then you’re already half-acquainted with Peer Gynt — the big dreaming lothario set to take the ASB Waterfront Theatre’s stage in a production by wunderkind playwright Eli Kent. With lust, fame and fortune driving the Peer Gynt [recycled] storyline — a classic originally written by Ibsen — we can’t wait to partake in this wild ride. Get tickets here.

An operatic world premiere
Inspired by the tale of the SS Ventnor which sank off the Hokianga coast and is a lost part of New Zealand history, The Bone Feeder is a new opera, beautifully written by poet and playwright Renee Liang and imaginatively scored by Gareth Farr. As an audience, you’ll be subjected to the mysteries, traumas and gifts of migration, home and belonging. Get tickets here.

Not-your-average ballet
Featuring Sergei Polunin, i.e. the star of the David LaChapelle-directed video that was Hozier’s Take Me to Church, we’re hotly anticipating the guest appearance of this ‘bad boy of ballet’ (yes, it’s a theme) in Natalia Osipova & GuestsRead more here.

Auckland Arts Festival

www.aucklandfestival.co.nz

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Bird On A Wire

Did someone say office shout? Your team will love you for choosing one of these delectable eateries

Who needs fresh air? These lunchtime solutions are delivered straight to your door.

If you’re pushed for time as those deadlines fast approach, or, it’s an office birthday and you’re using the excuse to take a break, this delectable line-up will make ease of lunch prep and keep bellies full. Whether ordering online or jumping on the delivery run, you can thank us later for bringing these time-saving options to your attention.

Toto Pizza
Always a crowd pleaser, their ‘pizza by the metre’ will not only conveniently feed the masses without copious amounts of packaging, but their less-is-more approach to toppings will transport you back to Italy for lunch hour too.

4&20
Classic sandwiches, healthy salads and tasty baking, we wouldn’t be surprised if you were mistaken for making it yourself. Just as fresh as homemade, 4&20 have a huge variety to keep everyone happy. Their New York baked cheesecake is a must — it gets a 10/10 from us.

Eat My Lunch
Why not have your lunch and eat it too? Or, at least allow for a local kid to have it too. While we’re sure most of you are aware of this awesome initiative, we can’t give it enough praise. Not to mention, it’s cheap, convenient and simple. It will be delivered to the door and is sure to bring the positive vibes all day long.

Taco Party
Taco ’bout a good time, with only 48 hours notice required, the team at Honeytrap will deliver all the goods necessary to host your own taco party without having to deal with the prep. Gather round the desk and have your own fiesta, there’s nothing quite like bonding over your taco building skills.

Bird on a Wire
No strangers to the lunchtime rush, Bird on a Wire spreads their wings with their office delivery circuit. Available around central Auckland, their signature chicken rolls, salads and duck fat chippies will spoil you for choice. Bonus: You can order online.

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Treat yourself to a Powersurge online shop, and receive a generous restaurant voucher for paying it forward

Four cardinal rules for keeping your carving tools sharp

Whether you’re the designated carver for a Sunday night roast, dicing some daikon or trying your hand as a sashimi master, these four tips — according to the maestro Mike Bernard of Mikes Mobile Knife Sharpening — will keep your carving instruments as sharp as a tack. The sharper the knife, the better the outcome.

1. Never store them in a draw
Unless you have a non-slip lining the knives will knock against everything else in there and thus dull the sharp edge.

2. Don’t put them in the dishwasher
Along with banging around with all your other kitchen tools, dishwasher detergent is very abrasive. You wouldn’t wash your hands with it, so why hurt your knives with it? (Plus, it’s not safe for those stuck with the task of unloading either)

3. Wooden blocks are okay…
So long as you slot them in spine up as opposed to sharp end down.

4. The best place for them is a magnet
But same principal applies; place them spine first so the sharp end is the last part of the knife to hit the magnet.

Gastronomy


From perfect pasta to mouthwatering mezze, these are the best comfort food takeaways to order right now

This new Miann opening is bringing the sweet life to Ponsonby Central

Treat yourself to a Powersurge online shop, and receive a generous restaurant voucher for paying it forward

The new cocktail closing in on the espresso martini

To be honest, when we heard of the fresh cocktail trend that sees gin and tonic muddled with coffee, our first thought was: ‘great, finally a chance to be hyperactively sad in public.’ Not the type of libation that instantly appealed, we were hesitant to give this one a go, but since whipping up and knocking back a few of the aptly named, ‘Turbo G&Ts’ we have to admit… we were wrong.

Blending gin’s light botanicals and tonic’s soft bitterness with a splash of earthy coffee, the unusual flavour combo really works. It’s a subtle twist on the classic gin and tonic — rather than a complete taste overhaul — and makes for a delicious party-starter guaranteed to both perk and loosen you up in one fell swoop.

But don’t just take our word for it, make your own. Simply pour a shot of gin over ice, followed by a small nip of cold brew coffee, before topping with tonic water and a twist of lemon to finish. Our new aprés work beverage of choice, turbo charge your Friday evenings with this enthusiastic gin tipple. 

Gastronomy


From perfect pasta to mouthwatering mezze, these are the best comfort food takeaways to order right now

This new Miann opening is bringing the sweet life to Ponsonby Central

Treat yourself to a Powersurge online shop, and receive a generous restaurant voucher for paying it forward

A stellar cafe is bringing out the best of Birkenhead

Heading over the bridge? This baby is well worth a stop.

Just when we thought things had hushed a little in the ‘burbs over the bridge — since the likes of Mulan and Fika With Me anyway — it has been brought to our attention that a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed cafe, bar and restaurant has opened its doors, much to the delight of Birkenhead locals and beyond. Named simply after its coveted coordinates, The Junction is — to quote a happy customer who could barely contain their excitement when we asked — is “one to watch”. We couldn’t agree more.

Proudly marching to the beat of their own drum, the firm foodie favourites here feature the perfect portion of personality to keep things interesting — a reflection of their discerning, worldly clientele perhaps? Take the eggs benedict for instance, the saucy twist takes the form of a burnt butter Hollandaise that brings a nuttiness to the table that kept us coming back for more. The ‘unsmashed’ avocado is another fine example. Tired of hearing the alligator pear served pulverised, The Junction’s rendition leaves our beloved avo intact and accompanied by a turmeric-infused sea salt, high-quality bocconcini and the ‘do-not-dare-say-no-to-it’ garlic sourdough.

Moving out of brunch territory, saying you’ll be spoilt for choice here is an ample understatement. Whether you’re in the mood for house frozen yoghurt and waffles (made on machines imported from the great waffle region of Belgium, we’ll have you know) or a beautiful salad of prosciutto, French goat’s cheese, cos, sliced pear and walnuts drizzled with a red wine vinaigrette — they have it all. Hoping to do dinner instead? The grilled veggie stack will appeal to many but, the braised lamb shanks… those are a must — so loved is the dish that we heard rumours of a fan club in the works in honour of the meaty main.

Here to heed the call of the hungry (and when a delicious morning fix of Atomic coffee is imperative), for food among friends in a convivial locale on the Shore, this hotspot is hard to beat.

The Junction Eatery

39 Birkenhead Ave
Auckland

Gastronomy


From perfect pasta to mouthwatering mezze, these are the best comfort food takeaways to order right now

This new Miann opening is bringing the sweet life to Ponsonby Central

Treat yourself to a Powersurge online shop, and receive a generous restaurant voucher for paying it forward

Waiheke finally has its own dedicated burger joint, Too Fat Buns

Though for many, a trip over to ‘the rock’ is one done in heels or a suit with lofty intentions of an elongated lunch and fine wine, there is often a call for some more casual cuisine. Whether that be for a grab-and-go meal on the way back to the ferry, a ‘pick me up’ after a glass of bubbles too many, or a day-after-the-night-before bite that is able to fill (and cheer) you up quick-smart, new opening Too Fat Buns is just the ticket.

The kind of place where burgers are bulging and shakes come thick and malted, the white-brick-lined shop tucked down the alleyway behind Oneroa Beach Cafe is a modern interpretation of the good old fashioned takeaway joint. There’s the ‘classic beefy bun’ loaded with prime beef, salad, pickle, relish and your pick of cheese; the ‘hot chicky’ that smuggles Moroccan-spiced tenderloins, jalapeño relish and citrus-tinted yoghurt into a bap; and the brilliantly-named ‘man bun’ which seriously ups the ante with beef, bacon, beetroot, salad, egg, avo and all the trimmings. With chunky chicken-salted chips, sodas, ice cream and options for the vegetarians, the gluten-free and kiddies too, the village newcomer has your bases well and truly covered.

Heaving burgers that don’t hold back on the good stuff, Too Fat Buns is the kind of place you stop at when you want something fast, filling and downright delicious. Handily positioned a few minutes walk from Oneroa beach, we suggest stopping in then whistling down oceanside to enjoy it… if you can make it that far without digging in that is.

Opening hours
Tuesday-Thursday & Sunday: 
11.30am-8.30pm
Friday & Saturday: 
11.30am-9.30pm 

Too Fat Buns

Unit 4
118 Oceanview Road
Oneroa
Waiheke Island

Gastronomy


From perfect pasta to mouthwatering mezze, these are the best comfort food takeaways to order right now

This new Miann opening is bringing the sweet life to Ponsonby Central

Treat yourself to a Powersurge online shop, and receive a generous restaurant voucher for paying it forward

A night at Cinema Peroni

Naturally, we Denizens never let a little drizzle dampen our spirits. This maxim held true last night when we gathered a stellar posse of friends and family for another stand-out evening at Cinema Peroni. Not deterred by the ominous precipitation, our ever-generous host, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, laid down a blue carpet and welcomed all and sundry into the cordoned-off area of Britomart’s Takutai Square. Having quaffed a few cold brewskies and delightful Peroni Spritz cocktails, the crowd was invited to install themselves in front of the open-air screen and subject themselves to the magnificent Paolo Sorrentino-directed The Great Beauty. Satiated by a three-course dinner from neighbouring restaurant Amano, and with our every whim catered to, there’s no wondering as to why we deem Cinema Peroni one of our favourite events on the summer calendar.

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Explore the most photogenic apartment block of all time

It’s been dubbed a ‘photographer’s paradise’ for good reason; Ricardo Bofill’s La Muralla Roja (The Red Wall) is an apartment block located in Alacante, Spain, distinctive for its geometric, fortress-like façade. Casting a jagged silhouette that mimics the surrounding mountains, over the years, innumerable photographers have made La Muralla their subject including artist Andrés Gallardo. Gallardo says of the architectural feat, “the best thing about Muralla Roja is that a photographer could visit it several times and keep taking totally different photos.” Capturing the striking colour palette against a crystal clear sky, the photographer emphasises the structure’s kasbah-like properties, presenting it as an impenetrable citadel of sorts.

Design


Treat yourself to a Powersurge online shop, and receive a generous restaurant voucher for paying it forward

This transparent furniture trend is a stylish exercise in creative contradiction

Melding modern lines with a romantic garden outlook, this home is the epitome of quietly confident luxury